Another caving trip in the Dales

I've suggested a new date: - Dec. 1st. (its the earliest I can do). It doesnt matter what time of the year it is, as the underground temp. is fairly constant; as long as its been relatively dry and no heavy rain or showers are forecast on the day.

The trip in mind is 'Calf Holes' nr. Horton-In-Ribblesdale and its easier and shorter to cater for some who missed out in September. There's an 11m. entrance pitch, which we could abseil; other than that its a mixture of walking, wading, crawling and a bit of scrambling (and you exit out of Browgill cave, rather than having to return). There isnt the kit hire as we had before but good headtorches should last for the duration of the trip (2.5 - 3.0 hrs.). Here's a few ideas of whats on offer:
http://uk.images.search.yahoo.com/search/images?_adv_prop=image&fr=yfp-t-702&va=calf+holes
http://www.wirralcavinggroup.org.uk/trips/calf.html
and while we're there we could have a look into Birkwith cave - just a 5-min. diversion - on the way back if you have'nt had enough:
http://uk.images.search.yahoo.com/search/images?_adv_prop=image&fr=yfp-t-702&va=birkwith+cave
Be aware that both caves respond to heavy rain, so I'll keep a good eye on the weeks weather .For last minute queries my no. is[masked]

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  • Lesley

    Awesome pics looks like it was fun

    1 · December 2, 2013

  • James G.

    Yet another magically successful trip, thanks Kevin and every one who managed to make it despite the confusion.(Sorry bout that).....Just a question to nigel. Is there any environment that you fail to take a good photo? Not sure how you do it but I'm a little reluctant to put mine up next to yours.

    1 · December 2, 2013

    • Nigel A

      Thank you Mr Gareis. I think it's just pure luck, the only photography rule that I stick to is 'The Rule of Thirds'..!!

      December 2, 2013

  • Kevin

    Jess's dad saw a couple of Red Squirrels in the plantation where we parked above High Birkwith. I didn't realise they were this far south, but I found this link, which shows they are.:
    http://www.forestry.gov.uk/forestry/infd-7etbp7
    For anyone interested, if you click on no. 7 for the Yorkshire Dales, the most southerly reserve is just above where we were. It looks like it covers Ling Gill which is a National Nature Reserve and a SSSI - and has some caves - , but I think its closed to the public at the mo'

    1 · December 2, 2013

    • Nigel A

      It is closed off Kevin. I walked around the outside perimeter of it a few week back, its surrounded by fencing. It's only a few hundred yards further along the track from the Calf Holes entrance shaft.

      December 2, 2013

  • Kevin

    Thanks to all for the enthusiasm and for making it a good outing; to Nigel for the quick work with the pics (there's some good ones there) and to Leo for never shutting up - I don't think - for the whole trip !

    1 · December 2, 2013

  • Nigel A

    That was fantastic, i'm still on a high from it. Josh thoroughly enjoyed it too.......thanks Kevin.

    December 1, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Brilliant trip, thanks all (and esp Kevin for organizing!)

    1 · December 1, 2013

  • Kevin

    James, you shouldn't be lost. I was trying to get some fencing done when all these texts clogged up the Dales airwaves !
    Paul, I'm really sorry about this. It has changed from Sunday to Saturday and back again. As you say, Saturday would be better for you but if you can't make it Sunday, please do keep in touch for a SRT trip.
    It sounds as if the Penyghent cafe is closed, so we could meet at the car park beyond, then drive up.

    November 29, 2013

  • James G.

    I'm lost here! Paul, the plan was for Sunday then it changed to Saturday now back on for Sunday. My fault really for suggesting the change last week. We're caravaning near Horton in Ribblesdale and thought we would have to be off the site by lunchtime on Sunday. Luckily the owner is ok letting us keep the pitch until late. So, due to the unusual turn off events we're back on for Sunday. Hope this helps. ........

    November 29, 2013

  • Paul

    I have just seen this - Saturday is better for me so I'll be there.

    November 29, 2013

  • James G.

    Just been past the cafe and it says on the door they're closed until boxing day. There is a car park further on might be better.

    November 29, 2013

  • Nigel A

    Can I just confirm Kevin, we all meet at the Pen-y-Ghent Cafe......and then drive from there up to Calf Holes...??

    November 29, 2013

  • Kevin

    Ok, by 'popular demand' (not one to 'name and shame', though the initials J.G. spring to mind ), its now back on for Sunday. Everyone who replied knows about the new arrangement...I think !
    btw, thanks Amy for letting us know; hope you're well soon

    November 29, 2013

  • Amy W.

    Sorry for the lack of reply I have a bit of a flu so don't think it's the best idea for me to come!

    November 29, 2013

  • Kevin

    OK Jess, let's go for Saturday.. There's actually been a 'majority' anyway from yourself, james & Leo and Nigel & Josh. I saw Mike last night and he'd been sharing a rope with Julian who fancied getting out climbing, so a 'not sure' there and I haven't heard from Amy or Paul. Sorry if this has inconvenienced anyone

    November 29, 2013

    • Kevin

      j. just read your full message. I'll text you

      November 29, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Hmmm, so the car broke down.... preference is now Sunday in light of that (by which time it will be fixed!) If this does end up being tomorrow is there any chance I could beg a lift off someone if I get to an appropriate train station please?

    November 29, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Is there any consensus on which day? It will affect where I go when I finish work tonight (i.e back to Sheffield or over to Holmfirth) so if anyone could possibly drop me a text with which day I'd really appreciate it (I won't have much internet access today) 07759364024. Thanks! Looking forward to it. Jess

    November 29, 2013

  • James G.

    Saturday preferable but Sunday absolutely fine. .. either way, we'll be there with our knickers in the air. ......

    November 28, 2013

  • Kevin

    I've mailed everyone now who has RSVP'd for this and asked for replies here. I'll just go by the 'majority' verdict. (I've said that if the outcome isn't what you want, not to worry, because there'll be another trip put on.

    November 28, 2013

    • Nigel A

      I've no preference, either Saturday or Sunday suites me.......

      November 28, 2013

  • Kevin

    James (same reply as in the climbing meet):
    I'm happy with either day for the caving (though I doubt I'll turn out on both days if it frees up the Sunday) but it just seems a bit late to try and get everybody on board for the Saturday.
    (If anyone else has flexiblilty or preferences, plase chip in)

    November 27, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      I can do either day too, have a slight preference for Sat but either day is fine :-)

      November 28, 2013

  • Nigel A

    Both Josh and myself should be ok for caving on either Saturday or Sunday...... Still both looking forward to it.

    November 27, 2013

  • James G.

    We are hoping to spend the weekend caravaning near Austwick so will only be 15mins away from meet. It'll just be Leo and myself for caving now as Lisa will be entertaining Evie. We could even do Saturday if the weather is better. Actually, Saturday would make it easier for us to get the caravan home on Sunday but happy with either day.

    November 18, 2013

  • Kevin

    I've put a 'cap' on the RSVPs now. If anyone can't make it, please let us know and take your name off. I'm a bit wary about taking any more but if anyone else is interested, stick your name up here and there's likely to be another trip anyway. In either case it'll be down to the weather again in the week leading up to the meet

    November 12, 2013

  • Kevin

    Hey Jess, long time - a very long time ! - no see. Of course, have a go at the caving. I don't know if you've been underground before, but have a trawl through this mass of comments below, for ideas about what to wear and what you're likely to encounter. If there's any other queries, just stick them on here.
    Lesley, thanks for letting me know. Although its not a long trip and all the difficulties will probably be on the entrance pitch, I might cap the numbers now as there's enough really with 10 people.

    November 8, 2013

  • Nigel A

    Tuesday 29th October 2013..... I was on annual leave today, was bored and so had a drive up into the Yorkshire Dales. Diverted to have a 'nosey' at Calf Holes, and Browgill Cave. Looking at Calf Holes, Kevin's decision to cancel was a good one.......quite a bit of water entering compared to my last visit(this time I couldn't cross the stream..!!). Browgill Cave water level was higher too, but I managed to get a little way in though(in wellies this time, not hiking boots). Drove up to Ribblehead, then towards Chaple-le-Dale. Had a wander to Great Douk Cave too where a family were all geared up and climbing the waterfall to enter the cave. If you want to view the photo's, here is the link to my online album from today.... http://opa.cig2.canon-europe.com/s/m/B8kCvs5uWE5

    3 · October 29, 2013

    • Kevin

      Hey, great pics , Nigel. Looks like you had a good day. I don't think we'd have got far at all - and certainly not all the way through - in Calf Holes, if the water levels were anything similar.

      1 · October 29, 2013

    • Lesley

      Fantastic pics though

      1 · November 8, 2013

  • Lesley

    Gonna give it a miss this time but keep me posted if ya do another next year. Its the week before my assignment deadline and im pretty skint

    November 8, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Hi Kevin,
    This looks fab! I haven't been on any of the other caving meet ups though (I've been beyond snowed under with lesson planning and assignments, sorry for disappearing!) Is it still Ok to join this?

    Thanks
    Jess

    November 8, 2013

  • Lesley

    Not sure if I can make this one but will try.

    November 2, 2013

  • Kevin

    I've changed the date and intro', as we'll try and keep another underground trip in mind. If its not suitable (Lesley partic.) do let us know and I'll see what I can do

    1 · October 26, 2013

  • Kevin

    Sorry about the delay folks, in contributing, but I wanted last-minute checks on the weather (and I tend to rely on the BBC version) and to check on any responses for my query on UK caving. I'm really sorry but I'm inclined go for cancelling this time. There's more rain tomorrow evening and may even be some on Sunday (though it looks like the southern Dales might escape that). There were 6 replies on UK caving (which i'm pretty impressed by) and the concensus is not to go near it. I was up above Gargrave today and levels in minor rivers and stream were quite high... I cant think of any worthwhile substitute just for the sake of going underground so I would rather leave it and try again in a drier period (As daft as it sounds, its sometimes safer to cave in November than it is in Summer, so we don't have to wait 'til next spring)..I'll mail this to all who RSVP'd just in case.

    2 · October 25, 2013

    • James G.

      I also clocked the ukcaving posts, It would be pretty crazy to ignore the warnings, especially with the young'un in tow. You here too many stories about folks going off against the odds. Thanks for the update Kevin. Good things come to those.........

      1 · October 25, 2013

    • Lesley

      Thats sensible and ya a day out climbing instead would be good depending on weather

      October 26, 2013

  • Nigel A

    Not sure if the links below are of any use in any decision making for this weekend....!! As you turn right in Settle towards Horton-in-Ribblesdale, their is a 'hydro electric' weir on the River Ribble immediately on your left.........this is monitored by the Environment Agency. Here's their link to the water levels on this section of the Ribble. http://www.environment-agency.g...­ ............and another link that I use often for current weather conditions at Ribblehead(this weather station is based in the old railway station at Ribblehead http://www.mylocalweather.org.uk/ribblehead/

    October 25, 2013

    • Nigel A

      October 25, 2013

    • Nigel A

      Hope the link above now works Kevin..........and just for curiosity, here's a link from Settle's Hydro website to their web cam of that same weir at Settle(obviously nothing to see at the moment until daylight). The link is http://settlehydro.hu...­

      October 25, 2013

  • Kevin

    I've just checked in the caving guidebook. Great Douk does'nt get a flood warning as Calf Holes/ Birkwith do. I've put up a query on UK Caving, to ask for advice on the flood potential for all of them, based on local experience, so watch this space

    1 · October 23, 2013

    • James G.

      Thanks Kevin

      October 23, 2013

    • Nigel A

      I keep having a 'nosey' at your query, and the replies you're getting on UKCaving Kevin......

      October 24, 2013

  • Kevin

    Yes James, I agree, the forecast is bl@@dy awful. Plenty of rain overnight Thursday to Friday a.m, then later again on Saturday. Showers on Sunday so far, which would be OK, had there been little rain before. Right now, I'm just not sure. I've done a quick trawl of 'easy' trips and there's this one. it means a few more miles up to Ingleton then past the White Scar show caves to Chapel-Le-Dale:
    http://ukcaving.com/wiki/index.php/Great_Douk/Middle_Washfold
    (I've got the guidebook with it in)..There's always the 'Hill Inn' by the path up to Great Douk to retire to if we didnt get far.
    If we stick to the Horton area, Nigel might be able to come up with a plan B walk if all else fails, but its a long way just for a walk. I'll keep checking.
    On the clothes front I've got a fleece onesie, a ripped oversuit and I think a 2-piece wetsuit somewhere for anyone's use

    October 23, 2013

  • Nigel A

    I have 2 standard cotton 'workwear' zip up boiler suites here at home(size wise, they are around....well my size lol. Can check their size though if anyone needs the use of them), neither Josh nor myself will be using them on this caving trip. Not sure if anyone will need the use of them, but i'll throw them in the car just in case....!!

    1 · October 23, 2013

    • James G.

      As far as I can tell from the caving websites, the very mention of 'cotton' is severely frowned upon. It appears that synthetic fibres are the way to go.. nylon and such like, as they don't soak up and stiffen when wet. you learn sumat new every day.

      1 · October 23, 2013

    • Nigel A

      When I were a lad James, we caved in cotton boilersuites............­...and holes drilled behind the ankles in our wellies to let out the water lol.........!!

      1 · October 23, 2013

  • Lesley

    Feeling kinda anxious about my lack of waterproof suit to wear so will be cobbling my things together to see what is suitable

    October 23, 2013

    • Nigel A

      Lesley..........cost me a tenner for a one piece industrial waterproof oversuite(like a 'onezie' lol lol). Not waterproof as in I won't get wet, but it does have elasticated hood, cuffs, and ankles(which may limit the amount of water that does get through to me though). I'm under no illusion that i'm going to get wet.........but think this suite may limit by how much I will get wet lol..!! See the discussion earlier on here as to where the place I got them from for both Josh and me.....

      October 23, 2013

    • Nigel A

      I've got a spare 'right-hand' marigold if you want to borrow it Lesley.......!!!!!

      1 · October 23, 2013

  • James G.

    Is there a contingency plan as forecast looks bl@@dy awful? Or is me wetsuit gonna get.............. well......... 'wet'?

    October 23, 2013

  • Nigel A

    Went up to High Birkwith on Friday just gone. Had a wander round and also visited Birkwith Cave, Calf Holes, and Browgill Cave. Just had to have a 'nosey' in Browgill Cave too lol....!! If anyone wants to see the photo's of the three entrances, and my little 'look' inside Browgill Cave...........the link to the photo album is below. http://opa.cig2.canon-europe.com/s/m/Fr7tXfksERk

    October 13, 2013

    • Kevin

      thanks for the link Nigel...Can anyone use this or do you have to set up a new album ?..I was just thinking of what you were saying about a 'general' album of outdoor stuff that anyone can contribute to and dip into

      1 · October 17, 2013

    • Nigel A

      This is my personal 'online' album run through Canon's website. I can put numerous albums into it, and password protect them too. Not quite sure how much it'll hold, but a 'general' album for pics on this site would be good. There are general things that may come up in conversation on weekend/evening meets that could be uploaded in picture form to something like a 'general' album. As far as others having an online album, anyone can do it..........it just means it's their personal one that they'd have to post a link to through here. Anything above and beyond this is beyond my knowledge...... Just out of interest for you....below is the link to my album of when I hiked Scafell in July of this year. It is password protected, the password is scafell (in lowercase). http://opa.cig2.canon...­

      October 18, 2013

  • Kevin

    Nigel, thanks for the mention of the MegaJul belay device. I don't know what to make of it really, because of the mixed reviews. have a good read through these links and see what you think:
    http://www.ukclimbing.com/general/search.html?cof=FORID%3A11&ie=UTF-8&q=mega+jul&cx=012320157739014986830%3Azyxmlwsazli&sa.x=0&sa.y=0

    1 · October 17, 2013

    • James G.

      Julian will be the one to speak to about the mega Jul. He's had one for a while now so may have useful feed back.

      1 · October 17, 2013

    • Nigel A

      It was Julian that mentioned that the the Mega Jul could be a useful abseil device for me. I'll have a chat with him about them next time I see him, didn't realize that he'd used one.........

      October 17, 2013

  • Kevin

    Nigel..now, what were you talking about on Sunday !...I found this :
    http://www.grough.co.uk/magazine/2013/09/22/ten-hour-overnight-rescue-for-caving-pair-trapped-in-providence-pot-system
    Anyway, don't be put off. We aren't going anywhere near Providence and Dowbergill. (Providence Pot in itself, is OK; its a bit of a muddy grovel if anything. Its only when you're well into the Dowbergill bit that things can get desperate)..In fact, if you're an outdoor fan, its best not to log in to 'Grough' too often; you'd be tempted to take up knitting !

    1 · October 9, 2013

    • James G.

      Don't underestimate the knitting needle. In the wrong hands. .... Well, owt could happen.!

      1 · October 9, 2013

    • Nigel A

      Knitting.......I failed with that as a pastime...!!!!

      October 9, 2013

  • Nigel A

    Kevin......we were discussing that gear i'd bought. Below is the link to the place where I got those one piece waterproof hooded suites. It is near the railway viaduct on Bradford road in Dewsbury, right next to Bill Hargreaves cycle shop.........a few minutes walk from the town centre. https://plus.google.com/108170450347047842814/about?gl=uk&hl=en#108170450347047842814/about?gl=uk&hl=en

    October 6, 2013

    • James G.

      Cheers dude.

      1 · October 7, 2013

    • Lesley

      Awesome.

      October 8, 2013

  • Kevin

    Weather-permitting, we'll settle for Calf Holes/Browgill (and a look into Birkwith), rather than Valley Entrance. With Calf Holes we only have to abseil or ladder climb the entrance pitch. Nigel made the very valid point that, if we're in Kingsdale Valley, we've got to re-ascend the pitch, which would prove very difficult, so if we make a decision now, all can give some thought to what they need and what it entails

    1 · October 7, 2013

  • Kevin

    The dates changed. I think everyone is OK with this. Sorry about the earlier mix-up; I thought we'd agreed on the 20th.

    October 7, 2013

  • Nigel A

    Well that's the one piece waterproof 'outer' suites purchased this morning............Josh and myself look pretty good in these matching green rubber suites lol.....!! Think getting these today, and letting him view a couple of youtube video's of what its all about has got Josh well up for this........and me too..!! Just need to tackle his apprehension of heights a little........even if it is undergound we're heading.

    1 · October 5, 2013

    • Kevin

      I'll get up in the loft at some point, as I might have an oversuit and fleece from old (and maybe even an old wet suit somewhere), so don't go spending any more on kit for now

      October 5, 2013

  • Nigel A

    Thanks Kevin. I'm certain that i have two workwear boiler suits that are around my size, if the 2nd one doesn't fit Josh then there's one up for loan(that's if any others are of a similar 'physique' to me..!!). We will also be in wellies, and possibly one piece waterproof 'hooded' outers........

    October 4, 2013

  • Kevin

    I've put up another suggestion for the actual cave in the intro. There's a few trips around with just walking or a'romp' up a streamway, but I just thought one with a variety of situations would be more interesting

    1 · October 4, 2013

    • James G.

      The more variety the better for us!! Even if we get a bit wet its not a problem, just adds to the adventure.

      1 · October 4, 2013

  • Kevin

    James, yes, wet-suits would be OK. I wore a wet-suit for years and they were the standard kit for a long time (though remember; again they might come in for a bit of abuse). They eventually do tear and fall to bits, but only after a massive amount of use. ..Climbing helmets are OK. The only snag is that the headtorches can get dislodged, but there shouldnt be problem on this trip......Also, If there's any likelihood that we'll have to do a bit of swimming, we ain't going anywhere near it !.

    1 · October 4, 2013

  • Kevin

    Nigel, the most essential items are helmet and lamp (with a good 4 hrs. of light - for today)..The normal cavers kit is a thermal baselayer, a fleece undersuit and the water-resistant oversuit. I also wear gloves (a sort of heavy-duty washing-up glove) and kneepads....The only things you really need to start off with are a pair of old boots and some old clothes. Wellingtons are probably the best but walking boots with lace hooks should be avoided as the hooks tend to get caught on the wire ladders we use. Trainers are totally unsuitable, as they offer no protection and minimal grip. Clothes can be anything that you don't mind getting wet and muddy - remember that they will get a battering. Several thin layers are better than one thick layer, and a "cagoule" and overtrousers keep you even warmer, but they can easily get ripped. Caves are fairly constant in temperature at about 8-10C. and a boiler suit on top is a good idea.

    1 · October 4, 2013

  • Lesley

    Cheers kevin.....looking forward to it

    October 3, 2013

  • James G.

    Nice one kevin. After the last Cave expedition I think I may have caught a bit of 'mole fever' so am getting quite a bit excited about this one, can't wait to tell Lisa and Leo. Do you think it's worth wearing wetsuits for this one? Judging by the photos on the link you put up, there may be some swimming to be done. Will normal climbing helmets do?

    1 · October 3, 2013

  • Nigel A

    Really looking forward to this caving trip, not been for many years. Could be a little 'challenging' for me, but still up for it. Kevin....could we have a rough kit list of what would be 'ideal' gear for this trip please......thanks.

    October 3, 2013

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