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Peak District Caving News October 2004

Peak Cavern's Far Sump Extension

The Rasp Upstream Sump 2 Passed.

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Getting to The Rasp Upstream Sump in Far Sump Extension has never been easy. Prior to the dry connection between J.H. and Far Sump Extension it was at the edge of the world involving amongst other things a 395m dive through the particularly notorious and often unpleasant Far Sump in Peak Cavern. Now, via the dry route, it's still not in the back yard. There are several ways into the system and all to The Rasp are long.

The struggle of reaching the constricted Rasp Streamway is only the start. Although only a few meters long the initial dive in 1998 failed to pass due a contortion at the upstream end. Later that year it was passed after being pumped, baled and dug. This lead to a short section of dry cave to a cascade and 'Sump 2'.

In October of this year (2004) Sump 1 was again passed and an investigation into Sump 2 was made with diving equipment. The way on was found to be too tight and seemed to be blocked. The opinion following the dive was that the best option was to attempt pumping.

A return was made and Sump 2 was tackled with a pump. This proved to be inefficiant and operations were almost terminated due to stale air but at the last minute, after four hours of pumping, the sump unroofed and a powerful fresh draught came through. As suspected the bottom of the sump was choked with rocks and would never have been passed by diving but this was dug out and a squeeze through lead to open cave. Unfortunately The Rasp lived up to it's pain in the arse reputation and the rift beyond dipped into yet another sump! The powerful draught was coming from an arm sized hole above. Sump 3 is as yet uninvestigated but will be, soon.

previous related report 09/2004