CSS Newsletters 2009 - Volume 51

Use the buttons to view or download the PDF version.

No. 1, January 2009

  • Caving B.C. - Part 5: The Dig Face Beckons - Duncan's tales of his caving exploits before joining CSS continue as he recollects early digging forays into Daren Cilau.
  • Breaking the Craig a'r Ffynnon Curse - After a series of mishaps conspire to prevent Gary from ever going to Craig a Ffynnon he finally breaks the curse on a trip to The Hall of Mountain King.
  • Craig a'r Ffynnon - Another first time visit to this impressive and well decorated cave.
  • Wigmore Swallet - Write up pf a trip to Wigmore Swallet, Mendip.
  • Pottering About on Mendip - Mendip caving trips done by John Cooper in December 2008.
  • Memories of an Agreeable Rat - Reminiscences of Tony Jarratt and the many interesting events shared with this much loved caving character. 
Download PDF

No. 2, February 2009

  • The Fool in Fernhill - Version on The Beatles classic 'Fool on the Hill' for the Fernhill diggers.
  • Daren Cilau - Frog Street - A brief summary of the events of the HRC Daren camps from May 08 - Jan 09 including the discovery of the Helibeds.
  • More Frogging Passage - Photos of the Helibeds and a write up of the breakthrough that happened in the passage beyond on January 09. 
Download PDF

No. 3, March 2009

Cover: Formations in Helibeds, Frog Street, Daren Cilau. Photo by Mark Lumley.
  • Library Additions February 2009 - Addition of the 'Rock Steady Crew' Daren camp logbooks from 1986-1991 coving the discovery of the Hard Rock extensions and Dweebland.
  • The Quest for the Mynydd Llangynidr Master Cave - Digging in Chartist's Cave on Mynydd Llangynidr.
  • Ogof Craig a Ffynnon - A first time trio into Craig a Ffynnon to the Hall of the Mountain King.
  • More 'Wigsy' - A trip to this sporting Mendip cave delivering diving cylinders to the sump.
  • Snippets from the Log - Trip reports take from the Whitewalls logbook including digging trips in Agen Allwedd and Daren Cilau.
  • Further Breakthroughs in Frog Street - New discoveries and updates on the dig sites currently being pursued by the HRC Daren digging team beyond Frog Street. Includes survey.
  • Minutes of the Annual General Meeting - Minutes from the AGM held on 1st Feb 2009.
  • Snowboarding in the Brecon Beacons - Snowboarding adventures on Pen y Fan. 
Download PDF

No. 4, April 2009

Cover: Andy Snook in the Frog Street extension, Daren Cilau. Photo by Steve Sharp.
  • Just One Easter Weekend - Recollections of a caving weekend Easter 1963 with a major breakthrough in Daren and the first dive of the terminal sump in Agen Allwedd.
  • J-Rat's Bequest - Mendip Underground by D.J. Irwin and A.R. Jarratt and Mendip - Its Swallet Caves and Rock Shelter by H.E. Balch books bequeathed by Tony Jarratt.
  • Ogof Garn y Bica - A bolting and surveying trip to Ogof Garn y Bica located near Trefil Quarry. Includes survey and grid ref.
  • Frozen Cnwc - An icy trip to Ogof Cnwc, with bats, ice formations and a stubbornly frozen door!
  • Fernhill Regained - An update from the Fernhill dig on Mendip being undertaken by ATLAS and CSS diggers.
  • The Descant - Ideas for a spoof screenplay based on the film 'The Descent'.
  • Caving Terminology Explained - A comedic take on the meanings behind a selection of caving words.
  • Noxon Park Iron Mine - A diving trip to Noxon Park Iron Mine in the Forest of Dean.
  • Pottering About on Mendip - Trips to Swildon's Hole and a Cnwc-Daren through trip.
  • Joe Duxbury's Book Review - A review of 'The Descent' by Jeff Long. A book that has been recently made into a caving horror film.
  • Frog Street - A brief account of digging at Frog Street during the February HRC Daren Camp. 
Download PDF

No. 5, May 2009

Cover: Stuart France at the bottom of The Waterfall, Ogof Draenen. Photo by John Stevens.
  • Goatchurch Cavern - An evening caving trip with the Axbridge Caving Group.
  • Swildon's Hole - Shatter Series - Trip to the Shatter Series in Swildon's Hole with it's notorious ducks.
  • Pottering About on Mendip - Two trips to Swildon's Hole in April 2009
  • Caving Terminology Explained - A comedic take on the meanings behind a selection of caving words.
  • Vercors 2008 - Caving trips to Pont du Loup, faux Gour and the Trou Qui Souffle - St Glace through trip, where the team learn the hard way the importance to checking out both ends of a through trip before hand.
  • Joe Duxbury's Book Review - A book review of 'Deeper' by Jeff Long, the sequel to 'The Descent'.
  • Draenen Round Trip - For the Larger-Built Caver - An alternative route through Squirrel Rifts on the Draenen round trip, more suited for the larger built caver. Survey Included.
  • Priddy Green Sink - aka Priddy Grim Stink - A sporting through trip from Priddy Green Sink to Swildon's Hole, a true Mendip classic!
  • Chelsea Working Weekend - A collection of photos from the April 2008 Whitewalls Working Weekend. 
Download PDF

No. 6, June 2009

Cover: Mandy Voysey in Curtain Passage, Fernhill Cave. Photo by Mark Lumley.
  • The Old Soaks in the Yorkshire Dales - Yorkshire caving trips to Bruntscar Cave and Great Douk.
  • Daren Cilau, that's a terrible place! - Paul recollects a most notable caving trip back in 1984 when we took part in a major Daren breakthrough and first explored Epocalypse Way.
  • Who Are ATLAS Anyway - The history and cave digging efforts of the Mendip multi-club digging team of ATLAS.
  • Major Extension to Charterhouse Cave - News of a recent breakthrough in Charterhouse Cave, Mendip.
  • Caving Terminology Explained - A comedic take on the meanings behind a selection of caving words.
  • A Purbeck Stone Mine - Exploring a stone mine discovered while walking in Purbeck.
  • Pottering About on Mendip - With four trips to Swildon's Hole in April/May 2009.
  • Star Shaft - An SRT trip in Star Shaft, a very interesting mine in Shipham, Mendip. 
Download PDF

No. 7, July 2009

Cover: Alison Moody in the 2009 extensions, Charterhouse Cave. Photo by Pete Hann.
  • Lot 2008 - A motley crew spend a week caving and cave-diving in the Lot region of France visiting a good variety of interesting caves.
  • Petzl Pantin - Gear review of the merits of the Petzl Pantin SRT foot jammer.
  • Gwent Cave Rescue Team Practice - Cave rescue practice in Eglwys Faen with a new type of 'roll up' stretcher given a test run.
  • Selected Caves of France - Part 1: Franche-Comte - A collection of trips done by Andy in the Franche-Comte region of France, including Gros-Gadeau, Chauveroche, Baume Sainte Anne and Gouffre Vax.
  • Radon Gas in Agen Allwedd and Eglwys Faen - Results from radon tests conducted in Agen Allwedd and Eglwys Faen during 2007-2009.
  • Otter Hole - A trip to Otter Hole, experiencing the delights of both muddy squalor and wondrous formations.
  • Pottering About on Mendip - Caving trips to Swildon's Hole and the newly discovered extensions in Charterhouse Cave.
  • Under The Ground - Caving song first published in CSS N/L July 1989
  • Pat "Twink" Fletcher - News of the sad death of "Twink" Fletcher following an accident in the Dolomites. 
Download PDF

Nos. 8-9, August-September 2009

Cover: Mandy Voysey in Fernhill Cave, Mendip. Photo by Mark Lumley.
  • Photographs of Fernhill Cave - A collection of photos showing Fernhill Cave from the initial digging efforts to the cave and formations rediscovered.
  • Fernhill Regained - The ATLAS digging team rediscover Fernhill Cave, previously 'lost' beneath a quarry tip in Fairy Cave Quarry.
  • Librarian's Report - Progress report on the relocation of the CSS library in the new extension of Whitewalls.
  • More Thoughts on the Pantin - A review of the Petzl Pantin for use in SRT.
  • Selected Caves of France - Part 2: Franche-Comte - A selection of caves in the Franche-Comte (Jura, Doubs) region of France. With trips to Jerusalem, Baume des Cretes, Bief-Bousset, Baudin and the mighty Verneau Traverse.
  • Heale Farm Cave - An Update on Access - A brief description of Heale Farm Cave in Mendip, with an update on the access situation.
  • At The Sharp End - A memorable Daren Camp back in January 1996 when the dig at Spaderunner finally yielded after 6 years of digging.
  • Pat "Twink" Fletcher - Obituary to "Twink" Fletcher who joined CSS in 1966 and died June 1009 after a fall in the Dolomites.
Download PDF

No. 10, October 2009

Cover: Dave King in Elephant’s Trunk Chamber, Withyhill Cave. Photo by Mark Lumley.
  • H-Harnesses, An Appraisal - Review and comparison of the various types of SRT chest harnesses.
  • When in Mendip do as the Mendipians do - Exploits from a caving trip to Shatter Series in Swildon's Hole.
  • Selected Caves of France - Part 3: Haute Savoie - The focus of this instalment is the Tanne des Trois Betas - Grotte de la Diau through trip. A splendid and varied multi-pitched pull-through journey combining SRT and active streamway.
  • Steve Allen - Obituary to Steve Allen, CSS member and Daren digger, who died in a paragliding accident in August 2009.
  • Montenegro 2009 - Excellent trip descriptions of caving, rigging and exploring the PT4 cave system on the multi-club Montenegro 2009 expedition.
  • Pottering About on Mendip - Detailing trips undertaken on the July CSS Mendip Meet plus trips to Charterhouse, Swildon's and Ogof Cnwc.
  • Recent Work in Fairy Cave Quarry - Update on the various digging projects in Fairy Cave Quarry, Mendip. Including Fernhill, Withyhill and Balch Cave. 
Download PDF

No. 11, November 2009

Cover: Andy and Sue Watson in Loxton Cavern. Photo by Steve Sharp.
  • Urine for a Shock - Report of innovative new batteries powered by piss and how this could revolutionise caving weekends.
  • The Mighty Titan - An evening trip into the Peak Cavern system via the awe inspiring Titan Shaft.
  • Digging in Daren - A weekend camping at the Hard Rock Café digging at The Inconvenient Truth and Southend on Siege.
  • Selected Caves of France - Part 4: Vercors - A selection of trips done by Andy in the Vercors region of France including Grotte de Bournillon, Grotte de Gournier, Scialet de Trisou, Les Saints de Glace and Gouffre Berger.
  • Withyhill Drainage - A project to improve drainage in Withyhill to prevent damage caused by flooding in the system. 
Download PDF

No. 12, December 2009

Cover: Duncan Price in Chamber Nine, Wookey Hole. Photo by Mark Lumley.
  • Free Tikka Anyone - A trip to the 'Holy Cave' on the mountain of Vaishno Devi on the Indian border of Jummo.
  • Drws Cefn - The discovery and subsequent gating of the Drws Cefn entrance of the Ogof Draenen cave system.
  • Selected Caves of France - Part 5: Vercors - A continuation of Andy's informative guide to caves visited in the Vercors region of France, including Glacier de Carri, Scialet des Sarrasins and Scialet Vincens.
  • Pottering About on Mendip - Caving and digging trips undertaken by John Cooper during October 2009.
  • Box Stone Mine - A trip to Crane Country in Box Stone Mine, a complex and impressive Bath-stone mine in Wiltshire.
  • Dead Dog Cave - Digging and surveying in Dead Dog Cave on the Llangattock escarpment. Survey included.
  • Electronic Surveying - Guide to electronic cave surveying techniques and the different types of kit used.
  • Letter to the CSS Chairman - A letter of complaint from Graham Price regarding recent articles featuring Fairy Cave Quarry access, "Priceless Grotto" in Withyhill and 'suggest' problems with water from Withybrook Slocker.
  • Original Mountain Marathon 2009 - Running the 2009 OMM, a 2 day mountain marathon held in the Elan Valley, using Whitewalls as a base camp.
  • Index to Volume 51 - Index of contents of Vol. 51 CSS Newsletter. 
Download PDF