Tuesday 27th November 2007 Mercer and Parker
Mr Walsh having found something else to do at the last minute this was
another Mercer/Parker duopoly.
Way in obstructed for 95 minutes by pumping of fairly full static sump
leading to major shivering by our dynamic duo. After that forward to the
Window where the imminent ladder installation became fact. This followed by
dragging of tackle bags through the odd tight bits until we reached
Richard’s high level phreatic tube.
Long legs were called into action and Phil climbed and traversed the (as
usual) extremely muddy walls until he could see that there was more to look
at. The drill and associated gear was assembled and sent up so a bolt for a
safe descent could be placed. After that a move across a hole led
immediately into a cross-rift. It seems to choke/finish in both directions
although at a lower level the blockage was mud – possible dig. However a few
feet of upwards progress was made and there then appeared further
possibilities up on high. Decided that the odd bolt for confidence and
safety would be in order.
Both parties were now getting cold so Phil retreated to passage level and we
headed forward to Oh Bother It to dump the bolting gear. On Friday there was
the sound of water from along the wide rift passage, today that sound was
louder and quite enticing. Another look at the boulders/holes confirmed that
a bolt traverse is the sensible option.
We carried out a line plan survey on the way out and as the compass/clino
has vanished this was restricted to direction and lengths. From the chamber
back to the window we have 54 metres of passage, the majority of it, to our
surprise, heading at around 240 degrees. The large rift passage is on a
bearing of 160 degrees, parallel to the original rift entered from the
window but some 25 to 30 metres to the west – interesting.