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Oxlow to bottom of Maskhill - 22/05/2007

Written by RobEavis.

Report by Jules Barrett
Cavers: Jules Barrett (EPC), Jase Rider (EPC), Chris Schofield (EPC).


Very enjoyable evening tourist trip down Oxlow to the bottom of Maskhill. Arrived at the parking around 7.15 pm to find that one team was already on their way down Oxlow and a Masson team were kitting up for Maskhill. We decided that since Oxlow wasn't too constricted we'd go in there after the other team. Short walk to the entrance and rigged the first and second pitches. Starting a big (100m) rope at the top of the third pitch gets you all the way down West Swirl Passage to the top of the pitch that leads into West Antechamber. Down the third pitch with some great ginging at the top and then the pitch with the deviation which lands on the col between East Chamber and West Swirl Passage. The deviation cord that's on this at the moment is much shorter than it need be so we added our own piece of cord to the in-situ stuff. At this point the other ropes disappeared off into the East Chamber so we had West Swirl Passage and the last two pitches to ourselves. Jase pointed out the wall that he and John Taylor had built years ago which keeps the passage below Pilgrim's Way from running into the slot that leads to West Chamber proper. We met the Masson team in Pearl Chamber and continued on to have a look at the sump and then set off out. We caught up with the other team on the last few pitches but were out by 10.30 pm leaving time for a drink in the Wanted Inn.

Really enjoyable trip! Good exercise and the start of training for the PSM in August!