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The Bristol Exploration Club, The Belfry, Wells Road, Priddy, Wells, Somerset. Telephone: Wells (0749) 72126

Editor: G. Wilton-Jonesz`

Bassett's Notes

EASTWATER CAVERN.  In 1951 John Ifold of the B.E.C. pushed through the boulder blocked bedding plane at the top end of Harris's Passage to discover a small network of unstable passages, lying almost below the entrance to the cave.  It is now known as the Ifold Series.  The survey shows two choked passages leading towards each other.  At the end of May, Andy Lolly and Keith Gladman investigated the area and found one the chokes to be draughting strongly.  After six hours of digging in two sessions they broke through into virgin cave, initially of typical Eastwater bedding planes and canyons, with plenty of wet, sandy fill and gravel, loose boulders and unusually sharp and friable rock.  Some of the older stal suggests that the passages are among the oldest in Eastwater, though perhaps I am sticking my neck out here.  An eighty foot high aven near the entrance seems to be under Morton’s Pot, and could well be the key to dig there.  At the end of nearly 300 feet of grovel some parallel pitches have been found.  The head of has been banged to allow normal sized people to reach the narrow 25 foot rift, below which is a further 50 foot pitch into a deep canyon with an, intermittent streamway - probably flood overflow.  A small tube 200 feet along this fault rift needs enlarging.  It blows a constant, cool draught.  After the opening nasty bits of the new series, the passages are unlike the rest of Eastwater, several being horizontal, albeit only occasionally.  There is some good Stal in places, though much of it is very vulnerable.

Several B.E.C. members have already visited the extension and new discoveries come thick and fast. A survey is underway, and it is already clear that West End Series is well to the west of anything else in the cave. Over 1000 feet of new cave has been explored so far, taking the total length of Eastwater to well over a mile. The prospects for further extension look very good.

AUSTRIA 1983. The advance guard is currently up on the Dachstein plateau (mid June), in the form of Rob Harper, Rachel Clarke and Trev 'Biffo' Hughes, together an enormous load of tackle.  They are staying at the Wiesberghaus for two weeks and intend to re-bolt and tackle Bartngassewindschacht for those who come out in July.  Hopefully we shall soon know the exact depth of the huge 'Ben Dors Scacht', thought to be around 200 metres, and learn what happens at the bottom.

Since the Wiesberghaus is now on the 'phone they will be able to let us know almost instantly!

WOOKEY. Rob Harper continues his high level exploration here. Following up where Bob Cork and Dany Bradsaw left off in Wookey 24, he has reached the head of a bell shaped pitch 60' deep, somewhere off Sting Corner.  Dany has threatened to put a ladder down it while Rob is in Austria - just to keep the poor lad biting his fingernails.

OGOF CARREG LEM.  Sam (S.W.C.C. & U.B.S.S.) & Co. have now extended this cave to 1500 feet.

EDITORSHIP.  A new editor will be required for the B.B. as from October, as I shall be resigning from the post at the A.G.M.  Over the three years I have been Editor I have managed to reduce the work-load considerably, so it is no longer such an onerous task as it once was.  If you think you fancy the post, have a word with me sometime and I'll let you know what this entails.

New and Rejoined Members

Ian Jepson, Beechen Cliff, Bath.
Jok Orr, Sturton by Stow, Linceln
Rich Stevenson, Wookey, Wells, Somerset.

Quote Of The Issue 

From a member who has never written a single word for the Bulletin, on receiving his latest copy:

 “This is a bit thin, isn’t it.”