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Top Sink - Link Pot - 27th Sep 2009

Sunday September 27th 2009

Members present: Andy Tricklebank,  Anna Barnard,  Catherine Moody,  Nicola Gover,  Richard Gover

Report by Richard Gover

Urgh. Not recovered yet. At the risk of using a somewhat overused phrase, this was an AWESOME trip. My estimate of 5-6 hours underground was a little optimistic (actual time underground a little under 10.5 hours - a very late return to York for a Sunday night).

Due to numerous previous Easegill adventures we were lucky to have done all of the passages at least once before, and often many times. However we still managed to lose about an hour in the EPC 71 series forcing our way into Equinox Hall by mistake. I literally only just fitted, and was starting to feel really quite desparate.

Very low water levels made for easy going, Top Sink to Stop Pot were as fun as ever (Top Sink sucks going back up so don't do it). A very welcome break for home made sausage rolls at Stop Pot, then a slightly dull plod through the high level stuff to Stake Pot.

EPC 71 series started well, but we got a little confused over the description of a pot that I think we didn't in the end go into, so we didn't recognise when we were already in Brew Chamber (hence the unschedualed side trip into Equinox Hall - not recommended). I think morale was at rock bottom after 7 hours caving and being forced to seriously contemplate returning all the way to Wretched Rabbit, which would have been touch and go for call out at midnight. However, some good lateral thinking about the description plus sending someone down every possible hole sorted things out. Teamwork makes the dream work :-)

88 foot pitch is probably one of the most exciting and dramatic pitches in the Dales. Lower Streamway and the Wormway are not a good place to be when it is raining (several hundred metres of passage that clearly is often sumped. Echo Aven good, but not as Echoey as 88 foot pitch.

Thank goodness it isn't far from Echo Aven to the exit as we are all knackered, though the Link entrance pitch is a real sting in the tail.

A fantastic trip. Probably one that will seem better and better with hindsight once the bruises fade.