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Wretched Rabbit to Stop Pot - 1st Nov 2009

Sunday November 1st 2009

Members present: Alastair Gott,  Gary Douthwaite,  George Bunyan,  Jess Rodgers,  Matt Ewles,  Rob Holmes,  Stephen Gillespie

Report by Matt Ewles

Probably one of the wettest days in the Dales I have seen for some time! Giants Hole was very much off and Wretched Rabbit and Mistral were on! After a cold and wet walk across the fell, we found Easegill Beck in flood, although with the water a long way off reaching Wretched Rabbit entrance. We made quick progress to the head of the first of the climbs. This was rigged with a ladder, as two P-hangers allow for one for hanging the ladder and a separate one for belaying.

The following lower climbs were easier, and we simply belayed everyone down while free-climbing (although on the way back up we put a ladder in to compensate for the lack of gravity assistance). We made speedy progress downstream, only to find (not surprisingly) that Eureka Junction was full to the roof (with scum several feet higher back along the passage, indicating the water was on the decline). A bit disappointed about not making Stop Pot, we started looking for the dry connection instead. This was quite easy to find by climbing up through an obvious boulder ruckle above the stream passage only a couple of minutes back from Eureka Junction. This gains access to a spacious dry chamber. A further climb and slither over a smooth large slab gains the crawl along into Stop Pot. This connection can also be reached by climbing up through blocks at the end of the crawling section in Wretched Rabbit Passage prior to Eureka Junction.

A quick trip out followed: We were please to see that the torrent of water coming down the pot at the bottom of the entrance climbs had gone, and Easegill Beck was a gentle flow. A bitterly cold walk back across the Fell (thank you to whoever installed the reflective posts) got us back to the car for a very respectful 6pm. Overall a great trip, greatly overlooked as a second freshers trip, and one for almost all weather conditions! The trip could easily be extended from Stop Pot into Montegue Passage if anyone is feeling particularly energetic.