13th October: A day trip to Gower.

With Alex Gee and John Cooper.

I decided against a nights ‘vamping’ up on Cefn Bryn and opted to drive over early on Sunday morning, so set the alarm for 05:00 am. Most of my kit had been packed the day before so just needed to pick-up the rucksack and go. Still, I didn’t get away until 07:15 am. Horrible driving conditions along the M4, heavy rain and lots of spray, thankful that there weren’t too many lorries on the road. Arrived at Overton at 09:35 am, John was already there and waiting, Alex had just arrived, we waited around a short time to see if David Hughes was going to show-up, he didn’t so we set-off along the path to Harry Thomas Cave.

At the cave entrance we quickly changed, and all went underground to assess today’s plan of action. There was plenty of stuff to shift, so the hauling lines were tensioned, Alex went up to the surface and began pulling up the loaded bucket. John was on the lower platform loading the filled bags into the bucket. I spent a short time in the end chamber and took a few photographs experimenting with UV illumination. Not sure the results are brilliant, will have to see and think about it later. I packed the kit away and started to move more filled bags up on to the platform ready to be hauled out of the cave.

After a while Alex called down for some help, the available stacking space was fast becoming crowded, so I went to the surface to move bags from the entrance along the path, even managed to empty a few. There came a natural pause and we stopped for a quick bite to eat.

All change, Alex went underground, and I stayed on the surface to haul the loaded bucket. About 13:30 we stopped hauling, the underground tidied things up, the tension on the haul lines relaxed and the last job was to empty the bags along the path visible to passers-by. All emptied, changed and on our way back to Overton just after 14:00. Back at the vehicles a brief chinwag and I was on my way home at 14:40. The rain had stopped, and it had turned into a pleasant afternoon. A steady uneventful journey home. I had decided to restrict my speed to c.60mph (max.) actually, it was less stressful and probably more environmentally friendly. Arrived home just after 17:00 pm. A fine day.

The end chamber; normal illumination.
The end chamber; UV illumination.

Author: mendipgeoarch

Archaeologist, geologist, speleologist.