Hallowe'en Rift, Mendip Hills

Excursions [and other notes] involved in the exploration of Hallowe'en Rift; a cave, so far, formed within Triassic Dolomitic Conglomerate.

The exploration of Hallowe'en Rift was started in 1982 by Trevor Hughes with other members of the Bristol Exploration Club, then during the early 1990's Vince Simmonds and other, mostly, local diggers were active at a number of locations within the cave, including the start of the present dig with Graham Johnson in December 1991. The current phase of exploration was commenced in 2009, with the majority of the early work being carried out by Vince Simmonds and Alex Gee, now the regular team includes Rob 'Tav' Taviner, Graham 'Jake' Johnson, Nick Hawkes, Matt Tuck, Jonathon Riley, Paul 'Brockers' Brock, Roz Simmonds, Duncan Price and Mike Moxon. There has been occasional help from others including Mike Willett, John 'Tangent' Williams, Pete Bolt, Bob Smith, Callum and Hazel Simmonds, with regular guest appearances by that well-known antipodean, Ray Deasy.

12th August 2017

digging 2017Posted by Vince Simmonds Mon, August 14, 2017 17:15:19

I was away this weekend, digging in a cave on Gower. The following report was penned by Nick:

"Four fine healthy able bodies in peak performance spent another couple of fun filled hours hauling dirt underground for no logical or apparent reason.

Friar Tuck set up position on the surface oscillating between that and the underground shuttle while Jonathon was in the strongly favoured haul and occasional shuttle position. Nick was on the sloping haul and transition zone and Dr. Brockers led the surgical extraction duties.

The way on, looks enticing as ever!. Still some mud on the floor left to clear so no consensus reached as to whether a bang is needed. Its recommended nevertheless that Vince and Ros go for their midweek banging session anyway, they can always try the extreme end where Jonathon left the vast gaping lead a few weeks ago, just to ensure there is enough spoil to be retrieved next weekend.

On a technical note, the designer skip was put into use on the long haul. Unfortunately, while the shear-beauty of the item cannot be faulted, the practicality was somewhat lacking. The inflexibility of the titanium steel washing machine base causes excessive friction so that only one bag could be dragged at a time and it also induces fervent cursing. Back to the drawing board for that one!. 57.6 bags to surface +/- 11.2. (OK, there was a counting error)"

Site personnel were Nick, Brockers, Jonathon and Matt.

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