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Another Breakthrough in Fairy Cave Quarry

by John Walsh

Tuesday 16th November.

Myself, Andy Thomas and two prospective BEC members, Helen Hunt and Mat Davey were exploring a muddy little tube on the right side of Bullrush Way in Balch cave.  After moving a large rock in the mud floor, I managed to squeeze through into a six foot long mud wallow.  I reluctantly crawled through only to come up in the quarry!!

Friday 19th

Mat and myself returned to have a look at Erratic Passage.  Halfway down on the left hand side a small slot under the wall looked interesting. After moving some mud and rock we could see a drop. I threw a pebble down- it sounded like a fair drop.  We were unable to proceed due to lack of equipment.

Tuesday 23rd

With the aid of pick and bar, and Andy's sweat and blood, we opened the slot enough for me to squeeze through.  It dropped straight down a sloping twenty foot water worn chute into a small chamber. On the right was a phreatic tube about three feet in diameter running down dip for about one hundred feet, with a lot of shattered formations in the floor.  About half way down the tube there was a twenty foot pot with a jammed boulder halting progress.  On the opposite wall of the small chamber a hole at floor level presented another surprise - a forty foot deep water worn pot about ten feet in diameter.  Due to lack of tackle and time, we retired to the Hunter's to celebrate.

Sunday 28th

Helen, Mat and myself descended the forty foot pot to find a mud floor taking water- no way on there yet.

At the bottom of the tube there is a slot.  Through this there is a flat out crawl at floor level that needs to be dug; also, an S bend with a ten foot climb at the end to a small terminal chamber.

John Walsh


No chance of metrication in Fairy Quarries it seems. Ed