The now annual descent of the OFC into Gaping Gill. This year's walk up Trow Gill and the pothole was rather a wet affair but the good spirits of the assembled crowd kept us going. The party, as per usual, walked up through the Ingleborough estate and past 'The Lake' before pausing briefly for a group photo at the 'grotto'. Walking on, we arrived at the Ingleborough Show Cave pausing to let the group gather before setting off to negotiate the ever majestic Trow Gill, once a cave of the Gaping Gill system, but nowan imposing gorge of collapsed rock roof and cliff side walls.
Sadly the weather was not brilliant on the day, and on emerging onto the fellside beyond the gill, the mist had descended and fine rain was falling in its attempt to dampen our spirit. Luckily, the ready wit* of Steven Procter kept us all smiling and arrival at Gaping Gill gave us chance to sign in for our timed descent and then it was lunch time!
Beth and Simon took some time to wander out onto Ingleborough, but the failing weather postponed their planned ascent of the peak for another day. In the meantime, the rest of the group took to the bosun's chair with that hesitant nervousness that can only be felt as you wait to descend 340 feet in the wet and dark, knowing that all there is between your backside and rocky ground far below is the supporting efforts of a 1 centimetre thick cable - brilliant!
Apart from Peter tripping over in the dark, (dosy sod) the descent was uneventful and for those first timers they really enjoyed it. Freddie Phillips had planned to travel up Ben Nevis from those dim mountain roots - a clever expedition if ever there was one. Of course, we did suggest that he should have taken the bike down with him and then ridden it to the summit of Ben Nevis. Surely that would've made an interesting height of ascent?
Anyway, just to end things with a thanks to Craven Pothole Club for their ten days of effort in setting up the winch and associated support facilities and of course for Liz Lemal for again suggesting the day and gathering those OFC types in Clapham for the day. Well done everyone. You all deserved your certificates!
Many thanks to Liz for organizing another great OFC day out, and thanks too to all who attended. Dave Dimmock
The Gaping Gill Descent 2010
It's already decided that there will be a 5th meet next year - there are still some people who haven't made it yet who want to come. So thanks again to you all. See you there next year. Liz Lemal (Organiser)
Have you descended Gaping Gill in the past as part of an OFC organised event? If so then you are entitled to a certificate to celebrate the occasion. E-mail the OFC with your details and one will be despatched to you forthwith. Peter Burgess
I just would like to thank Liz for organising a supurb day out to Gaping Gill on Monday 23rd August 2010. Despite the unfortunate weather conditions it was in fact a great day to meet up with many friends as well as new faces. As usual there was a wait to go down into the Gill (in the rain) but it was well worth it. We certainly got wet above ad below ground!! Thank goodness for waterproofs!! Neil Haslewood