Mendips In October

As a change from staying at the Shepton Mallet we took up Richard Vidler's offer to stay at the Bull Terrier at Croscombe which is run by his parents, 10 of us turned up on Friday night and a couple more arrived on Saturday.

5 of us set off to do Thrupe Lane on rope, and we successfully reached the bottom of a rather wet Atlas with Paul Stacey rigging the route via a landing halfway down, strangely the entrance had been rigged with P hangers but none could be found underground. The others went off to do another small cave in the area and then to visit Wells.

The disadvantage of staying in a Pub is that the drinking starts early and carries on late with the predictable result that the level of conversation deteriorated at an early stage especially when a pair of calliper's was produced and used to measure various
parts of the body.

Sunday started dry but the rain started at about 10 and so the parties that set off to do Swildons round trip and down to the sump had a very sporting exit.

The rest of us got a thorough soaking walking to Wells and back.

Ed writes. The trip down Swilly's was exceptionally sporting as the system was in complete flood. Sump one was 8 or nine feet long and the group of us who went on the short round trip had a really good journey. Meanwhile Annie Wakeham and I, having only dry kit just went to the sump and back, in Dry gear going up the wet way was an epic journey. On the way in we passed the usual huge groups who were really struggling with the water, particularly at the old 40' pitch. At this point we found ourselves in the company of Paul Warner, one of our newer members who was leading a troupe of freshers down to sump one and back. They seemed to be moving slowly. So slowly that we were quite concerned. We put ourselves on an ostensible standby - just in case. One of our group returned to the entrance a little later to found J-Rat kitted up and about to go in. Not out of some altruistic concern for his fellow man but because Paul had hired 8 lights and he wanted them back. All told Paul got them out in 6 ½ hours ! That must be something of record even for Croydon !

Chris Crowley