Jean Pot – Surveyed
Saturday, 7 December 2013

This was a last minute backup plan due to the weather forecast turning pretty bad at the last minute, writing off our original plans. A lack of imagination / guide books in the Ingleton car park had us browsing through NFTFH (the only book any of us had brought) which is not overly endowed with wet weather options. Holly suggested Jean pot, as although its a fairly short trip, its supposedly fine in most weather.

It was then mentioned that the cave had not been surveyed at the time of exploration, and that Holly and myself had been banging on for ages about getting round to doing it. Becka Cheerfully announced that she had two sets of survey kit in the car, so there was no getting out of it..

So we set off to Clapham and up past GG. The rough plan was for 2 teams of 2 to leap-frog survey the cave (complicated plan ensues, which no-one remembers once underground) whilst I rigged ahead to the bottom. Having not paid much attention to the description I was a little (pleasantly?) surprised to find the rigging a bit “minimalistic. As much as I enjoyed rigging off a single ancient rusty ring-hanger backed up to a tiny natural “dont knock the sling or itll fall off the belay or giant wobbly boulder at the pitch head “dont knock the boulder or itll fall down the pitch with rigging attached etc etc the cave could probably do with one or two bolts in places. The few bolts present are the original exploration bolts set up for ladders, so an SRT rig without rub points is a distant fantasy… Still great fun to rig though.

Anyway, team “digital (Becka and Emma) surveyed quickly through the 1st crawl and first couple of pitches, whilst team “analogue (Holly and Tom) surveyed not quite as quickly (but much more beautifully Im assured) down pitches 3 and 4, around the “chamber of false promises and to the end of all the dead-end passages radiating from here. The leapfrog system then was used to the bottom, leaving the whole cave surveyed in a surprisingly quick time. The “blind pit was descended and the short amount of passage below was briefly surveyed with a laser leg shot from the top. The long straws at the bottom of the pit are worth a quick look ‘ handline / rope for jamming up strongly recommended.

Becka had a fun time re-ascending the final pitch, getting the bang wire tangled around herself and through her jammer, unable to move from against an alarmingly loose large boulder below the pitch head. The wire is a hazard as it is particularly hard to cut with a knife, as discovered by Becka at the top. Could be worth a clean-up (along with many broken ladder remains) if no-one is planning on re-using it any time soon?

The end of the final crawl is a very interesting place, with one of the strongest draughts I have felt in the UK present throughout the cave.
A pretty speedy exit and we were out by around 8pm after approximately 8 or 9 hours underground. Not so bad for a full survey trip I thought. The students were encountered exiting bar pot, who eventually recognised Holly after clearing up which well-known Holly from ULSA it was “oh youre the Holly with BLACK hair. Its brown actually. :o)
The preliminary Survex model suggests 82m depth and 256m plan length, both a little shorter than the NC description suggests ‘ although the NC description of “an awkward hole ‘ full of character is certainly apt.

Comments

Nice one!! 🙂

There was an awful lot of crap down that cave, the majority of which Tom B and I removed over a couple of trips a few years back. As you say, a bit more to come out for a full clean-up!
Would be good to see the jean survey overlain on a google map along with GG survey?? I wondered how close it might be to some parts of Car Pot (e.g. Big End Chamber). Interesting place anyway! 🙂

Mike Bottomley

Tuesday, 10 December 2013