Alum Pothole by David Gibson
Date Saturday 6th September 2003
Location Alum Pot Yorkshire UK
Weather rains earlier then shower and clear during trip
Participants Ambar, Colon, Dave, Honky, Mark and Clive
(sorry for possible miss-spell) from West Midland Cave Exploration Group WMCEG
Alum Pot been chosen after several alternatives driven by heavy rain. As the only un-experienced person on the party I ‘ve been supported by most people during trip.
The entrance was not flooding as we predicted. Couple pool about 3 ft deep enough to make half body wet and cold. Temperature about 10C we agree that was warm enough (please mind my tropical blood guys!!!). Went down further on first junction to light transverse, along to first pitch -set by Dave and Clive. The Dollytubs pitch (14m), As I descended down the pitch it narrowed and then open out as I reached the bottom. water was dripping on pitch's walls made the descent more exciting lead to the pool on the ledge.
Through the boulders, was Greasy Slab (4.5m) to the Bridge which bit more likely conductor stage on a classical concert. This reminded me about the "Descent" magazine article about a bloke that did extreme ironing on this bridge. Cross the bridge pass many anchors to main pitch was not too nervous as I thought before. Bit fun while climbing on a greasy surfaces.
5ft from the top of the main pitch has been set a deviation. I failed to move the carabineer on to the rope above me 'cause run out energy. I left it hanging and continued to abseil down about 25m.
The main pitch was dry on top then getting wet as waterfall splashed to the air. The ledge to water-stream with to the right final pitch. On the ledge was amazing picturesque of the pot -most beautiful on any caving trip I've done.
A waterfall behind the bridge was pouring down to bottom pitch (>150m from lip's pot) waving water to the air drew by the wind. The atmosphere was glorious with grey light of the day picking among the trees on top. I on deep regret not bringing along camera to put you on same experience.
The last pitch (8m) about metres from the 2nd pitch ledge. I decided not to move on regained my stamina. This information behalf Mark who continued down to the bottom. The pitch quite wet with water stream and shallow walls. It was not as attractive than the main one. Dave, me and Honky then Clive followed back ascent to the bridge while Mark and Colon managed to de-rigging.
Total trip about 4 hours with difficult technical challenge (it might VS on climbing ). Thanks again for everyone involved with this wonderful trip. As Colon suggested, I need more SRT practice in garage !!
this trip report taken from WMCEG mailing list