Sunshine for days: summer 2018

The blog has been quiet this summer since the family meet of May and the trip to the Grands Causses in France, but only because we were still out and about taking advantage of the excellent weather instead of writing it all down! The facebook group and website galley are full of great photographs of caves and social events, and there are definitely more out there. Trip reports of some of our shenanigans will undoubtedly follow in the next newsletter which is due soon. Below are just some of the things that the club's been up to.

In June a contingent stayed in Monyash in the Peak District for the summer dinner, which was eaten at the Bull’s Head, well recommended if you’re passing and can grab yourself a table. For the second year in a row the sun showed up as a surprise extra member, company well enjoyed by the walkers and cyclists who wore themselves out above ground rather than below. We visited Eldon Hole on Saturday before dinner, visiting Miller’s Chamber and Damocles Rift at the top of the pull-up pitch in the main chamber. On Sunday in scorching sunshine it was a relief to go underground in Knotlow Cavern and then hide under Kath and Tiger's awning.

In July the hot weather had dried out the ground and it was possible to visit the depths of traditionally wet caves like Meregill Hole. At this point there is a lot of overlap between York CC and the NPC and a combined group went down Sleets Gill, famous for Hydrophobia and Hyperthermia passages – well written up over on the York website by Matt and photographed by John. Tiger’s annual Lakes meet, this year based at Wasdale Head, was its usual annual success too, despite a cloud’s efforts to thwart the walkers.

August was jam-packed, kicking off with a visit to Darnbrook farm and Robinson’s Pot (see left). This is very quaint and lovely in the sunshine, a picture-perfect scene complete with a lovable sunbathing cat which you have to save from itself: it’s very interested in coming caving with you.

The club participated in CNCC-led a clean-up of Roaring Hole. There was a lot of digging rubbish down the cave. To be honest most of it was probably left there by the NPC in the first place! – “I last saw that fire hose thirty years ago,” was one of the things that Tiger said! Matt wrote up our efforts in Issue 8 of the CNCC newsletter. Kat and Dave had a birthday party in mid-August that included caving, walking and dancing galore. Even August bank holiday was busy even though the weather was in opposition to the title of this blog for the first time in a while, a mild reminder of the autumn and winter to come. Death’s Head Hole, Boxhead Pot, Trapdoor Pot, Valley Entrance, and Shuttleworth Pot were all visited.

Before you think that I’ve forgotten about the NPC’s current love, don’t worry. France was on the agenda again – twice! We love France. The family meet in the Doubs in August was a big success with lots of junior members experiencing its delights. The Vercors trip in September was also a success.

All in all it’s been a great summer at the Pennine and the high enthusiasm is I think carrying on through with a big family meet planned for this weekend and a meets list for the next few months also being progressed. See you there!

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