Gingling Hole 2011 by Ian Cummins

Gingling Hole: Genevieve, Emma, Ian, Brian, Chris & Matt Dudman (26th June 2011).

Bjorn Borg has a resting heart rate of 42.  Funny how the most random things pop into your head and this line from Arthur Daley in Minder ran over and over in my head whilst lying on the anaesthetist’s table, waiting to be knocked out, whilst staring at the vital signs machine plugged into my creaking carcass via an excruciating clothes peg thing that was crushing one of my digits.

Time for reflection – Minder – not as good as The Sweeney and Bjorn Borg – cool guy, great temperament, unlucky in love.

Mine was 45  – damn it – I’m not as fit as Bjorn, but here comes the man in blue – ‘You a climber or cyclist?’ – ‘Climber’ – ‘Ever done an 8?’ – ‘Yeah………’

Awake – alive – great – tea please – I’ve only been dehydrating for 18 hours and watching daytime TV s**t for 9!

Then the recovery.

Less than 3 weeks and here I am trying to go caving.  Having done this trip to the sump 3 years ago, I’d been hoping to be competent enough to dive through this time….maybe next year, and the aim now was just to see if I could get to Fool’s Paradise without injury.

Meeting Gen and Emma in the café, it looked like a WRPC first – females exceed males – soon resolved at Dale Head, where Dudman Clan and Brian – last sighted over a year ago trying to find Black Shiver – were waiting.

First problem – finding the entrance without ‘The Navigator’ – proving to be a sweaty experience, involving finding Gingling Sink and walking back down the valley.

With Matt and Brian doing the bulk of the bag carrying, I managed to progress down the cave without weighting my knee or even bending it too far, with the biggest problem being the in-situ ropes – I swear the next time I do this cave they’re coming out!

We all commented how cold the cave was – any standing about resulted in rapid chilling and upon reaching pitch 6, the objective for the day, we returned.  What a beautiful bit of cave though and a great variety of passage making for a fun day out.

We should do this cave every year – what a fine experience!