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Eastwater - in high water

By Mr. President, 4 March 2002

The Eastwater trip last week was interesting. I have not seen it with so much water in the entrance series. It was supplemented with melt-water as there was snow on the hills. The three others has not been down Eastwater before and were a little unnerved by an episode where I spoke with 4 experienced (!?!) cavers who had just turned back in the entrance series with cold hands and frayed nerves.This somewhat undermined my authority and provoked a couple of minor mutinies.

Down we went and sure enough we had a brief crawl through a melt water waterfall and everyone was wet and cold debating whether to go on or not. A little erroneous encouragement from myself about it "being dry from now on" settled the arguement and we continued. Until we met the stream again, there being so much water that I could not see the way on.

Another mutiny started to brew and so I made myself busy. Eventually I saw a way on through a sheet of water and found a way through the boulders that was not the normal way on. This was gloriously wet. When everyone was down I looked around at the normal way down, I suspect the boulders have covered the normal way on. Whilst everyone was debating a return I came back and we pressed on through the 1st traverse and the keyhole squeeze to warm everyone up. My latest innovation on the fairy light was needed, I tied a loop around it tied to my helmet, because lo and behold it got knocked off on the traverse and would have been lost otherwise. The new helmet has cured the light angle problem and provides a much tighter fit. The battery duration is still suspect though.

We made the pub.

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