- the surface dig, Nov 1999.
On Sunday 31st October work started on the surface dig to Titan. Day one saw a gathering of the usual suspects and a JCB. Six hours later the solid fluted walls of the shaft were exposed with the base of the excavation at a depth of 5m........previous report 10/1999
Significant progress in the choke, Nov 1999 - Report from Nigel Cooper:
.......We are fairly sure we are out of the choke but whether horizontally or vertically is questionable! A few weeks ago we dug into a pretty little dome shaped chamber at the top of an ascending crawl through the choke. A fault controlled phreatic tube 2ft high leads from this, partly filled with rocks and clay. It is this we are digging. We need to survey if we can stop digging long enough, this should avoid possible embarrassment caused by emerging back in the show cave roof! Its not going to be a quick job but we can see passage continuing for some distance. We also need to dig a by-pass round a van sized boulder with little means of support, which we currently have to wriggle under to get to the dig face. This will also give us somewhere to stack deads. Work continues.....next report 12/1999 previous report 06/1999
The Tour de Farce, November 1999:
Nigel Ball and Dave Shearsmith are continuing with their aven bashing spree in Peak Cavern. The current target is The Tour de Farce, an obscure site close to the entrance of the cave near to Victoria Aven. This site was first investigated by Ted Mullins and others some years ago but the climbing was not completed. Back then, the initial aven was climbed to a point where there were both ways on up, and down. The route down was investigated and dropped to a point on a level, close to, but not connecting with the base of the first aven. The way on up was never climbed.....next report 01/2000
Instability warning, Nov 1999:
The DCA has received a report from Dudley Caving Club concerning instability between West Ante Chamber and West Chamber. The report read....
on a trip on Sunday 24th October in Oxlow we found that the connection between West Ante Chamber and West Chamber, just after the ladder, was very loose. Where you drop through to the crawl, several boulders from around the top of the connection shifted and fell into the hole. Due to the instability, we did not proceed through.....
If you require further information contact the Dudley CC Secretary, Emma Porter on 0121-565-5401 or
contact the club via
Further observations or information can be sent to
The D.C.A. will be looking to stabilise this section of cave as soon as practicable.
23/11/99 Instability warning:
Report from Steve Rider (EPC):- The Eldon Pothole Club held an exchange (Maskhill / Oxlow) trip on 7/11/99 and saw that the crawl was indeed a bit loose. However, on a subsequent trip 14/11/99 John Taylor and Mike Salt rebuilt the stone work but we are not sure how they got on
(let us know John (or Mike))
........ Loose rocks and boulders always produce varying degrees of concern with regard to stability and safety so as usual it's a case of judge for your self....... ed.
New web site, Nov 1999:
Report from Jenny Potts - The Orpheus Caving Club has a new and updated web site providing information about the club, it's activities and the OCC Club Cottage which is open for visiting clubs to book. The new URL is