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.

23rd October 2018

digging 2018Posted by Vince Simmonds Wed, October 24, 2018 06:33:53

With Roz and Alex

This evenings plan was to attempt the climb up to the small space through jammed boulders observed from the bottom of the rift in An Unexpected Development. I packed some clean shoes so that mud wouldn’t be transferred onto the calcite flowstone when climbing over it. Arrived at the rift, rigged the climb down with ladders and descended. At the bottom removed oversuit and boots, clean shoes on, climbed across the base of the rift and upwards. Took care to avoid some jammed boulder-size lumps of calcite and any cracked calcite. There are plenty of sound hand/foot-holds. Got to the slot, a bit more restricted than it appears, probably just about passable but for the precariously wedged boulder-sized lumps of shattered speleothem that need to be squeezed through, there are plenty of them. Discretion being the better part of valour, I retreated. Unfortunately, from the position I reached I couldn’t see the full extent of that section of the rift. Alex, then had a go but was unable to see any more than I could.

Next move will be to look at traversing across the rift from the jammed boulder halfway down. We changed back into caving kit, climbed the rift, de-rigged and exited the cave.

  • Comments(0)

Fill in only if you are not real

The following XHTML tags are allowed: <b>, <br/>, <em>, <i>, <strong>, <u>. CSS styles and Javascript are not permitted.