Trip Report: Long Kiln West

While in Yorkshire with the McGowan craeture of Reigate, a descent was made into Long Kiln West. This pothole is located on Ingleborough Hill, high above Newby Moss. A fairly long steepish walk in takes about 40 minutes.

The hole itself is a little difficult to find as the entrance is masked by rising ground, but if you follow a line of shake holes that terminate at the pillar holes and continue towards some standing stones on the skyline, you eventually arrive at the pot.

There are several ways down (see topo). The lesser ways are marked "ALT".

With your back towards the pillar holes, begin rigging from an ageing ring bolt or petzl "resin" anchor and abseil over the edge. 0.5m down there is a choice of anchors - "P"s, petzl "resin" and petzl eyebolts, plus some ageing spits - where you can rebelay. About 10m beyond there is a ledge where again there are all sorts of anchors, most of them badly placed as only 2 can be used for a rub free Y hang. This gives a further drop of about 30m in an ever widening void to another ledge. There are agin all sorts of anchors here, mostly badly placed. Instead, traverse up a ledge and locate 2 spit anchors (installed by John McGowan in 1992) to form a sensible Y hang to the base of the shaft. Watch out for the boulders!

The way on is via an obvious window. There is only one good bolt (8mm) for a short drop to a small passage. Begin a traverse line with a bollard or ring hanger straight away. There is a second spit just above the start of a crack in the floor. About 2m along a ledge past the hole in the floor you can find two spits in the ceiling (installed by John McGowan in 1989). Ring hangers must be used here (there are other bolts at the far end but the pitch head is tight). The drop is about 20m to a ledge. Facing the hole, rebelay to the right and deviate using a fixed aid about 6m down. The rest of the drop is free hanging to the boulder strewn floor. At one end of the passage there is an abandoned vertical dig.

Long Kiln West offers the vertical specialist the opportunity to do two fairly big pitches over a relatively short horizontal distance. Rigging is straight forward. The most difficult manouveure is getting off at the 2nd pitch head. It is not really the place for a big party or a descent in wet weather, and beware of lots of loose boulders.

Equipment Used:

Entrance Pitch:

4 x Maillon Rapides
3 x Petzl Plate Hangers c/w MRs
1 x 110m Rope

Second Pitch:

4 x Ring or 2 x Ring and 2 x Bollard Hangers
1 x Petzl Plate Hanger
1 x Karabiner
1 x 65m Rope

Martin Upfold