Penyghent Pot – Friday 13th Series
Tuesday, 16 August 2016

An early start was needed for this one, and I was up at 7. At 8, we were in the KA and enroute to Brackenbottom via Settle for some snickers. The whole thing was going pretty well until, when getting changed at the Bradford, I realised I had left my neoprene hood in my dads car. Becka was highly stoked and persistent as always (‘come ooooonnnnnnn!’) and we were very quickly at the traverse over Eerie Pot.

Psycho Crawl was negotiated relatively easily and without navigational issues as was the case last time I was there (thanks to Mr Dalton), the main problem being tackle bags getting caught behind you whilst you had your face in the water. Soon we were negotiating the Crawl of Cthulhu and past Elm Street. The 6m free climb is also easily negotiated and there is an in situ piece of tat on the stal column from which Jason’s Pitch is rigged. At the bottom, we started to kit up, with Becka adding further neoprene in the form of a hood and also a dive mask. It was at this point that George asked if his neoprene hood was still in my bag; it was not. I had taken it out at the top of the first pitch to give him his SRT kit and, rather than him taking it (as I assumed had happened) it had been washed down the pitch (we found it on the way out). Cocks. I put on a balaclava and 2 buffs and George fashioned a shawl from 2 buffs and we got on with it. The water was in fact not very cold at all and the sump was not particularly unpleasant. The duck after I also treated as a sump, sticking my face right in. the sump is very spacious and an easy dive, with a very nice thick dive line. On the other side we encountered a large amount of scaff and some other abandoned kit. Then we began to head out.

At the top of Jason’s pitch, Pete Tallings scurion began to flash madly, indicating that it was soon going to run out. I had no back up light, and Becka and George had 2 very shit ones between them. It was here that we decided not to head down Highway to Hell and the Living Dead extensions. In Psycho Crawl, my light died completely and I had to wait for George to catch up and give me his back up. This was a small torch which strapped to the side of his helmet, meaning that I had to cave with it in my mouth going onwards. Going over Eerie Pot and the free climb down to the 10th pitch was made very entertaining by this. Here, I collected Becka’s back-up, which could be put on my helmet facilitating easier progress. A quick detour to the main downstream sump was then made before heading out. A great trip; many thanks to George and Becka for coming along.

Around 7 hours underground total.

Comments

The highway to hell without a hood would be ok but doom gloom would be grim! The more neoprene the better or you need natural insulation and lots of it.

Sam Allshorn

Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Good to see Eerie Pot spelt correctly.

Agree with Sam Allshorn. Fri 13 originally done in 4mm wetsuits and 3 mm hood for sump but Gloom Doom and beyond in knackered 4mm was too cold. Toasty and floaty in semi-dry but a twat to walk up and down to the cave in so we used to change at the entrance.

Andy Tharratt

Saturday, 10 September 2016