We didn't waste any time in 2023! On the third day of the year we immediately had a rescue training. We would go and visit Pant y Wrach, just to check it out, and to see if a potential rescue in there would confront us with difficulties we need to think about before push comes to shove.
Dave, the bloke who had taken the lead organising this (as our training officer wasn’t around), had asked me to take the lead on the evening. I was okay with that; if you have the lead, you can delegate! And I am terrible in remembering things, so I wasn't sure how to find the entrance. But I knew there wouldbe people who could.
When I drove away it was raining lightly in Bethesda. But as soon as I got out of town, the rain got heavier! Conditions were actually quite poor. There was a lot of standing water on the roads. Extra careful driving was necessary!
When I got to the meeting point I saw two cars already there; they turned out to be Dave’s and Jonty’s; the latter I had corresponded with in my function as membership secretary, but I'd never met him. It was nice to put a face to a name!
Three more people appeared. One of these was another new face. We have been having a good influx recently! Basically since our emails started to work again. It does help, being contactable.
When we were a complete we went to the venue. I didn't remember how to get there, so it was a good reminder. But when I got to the entrance, it all came back to me. We first inspected a crawl through a dig. It looked good! And then we discussed a pitch head. It had some questionable looking old anchors, and some newer ones. We discussed if that would do. It probably would! Rigging from the new anchors, preferably…
Then we just had a look at the rest of the mine. The part that is accessible from that entrance is quite small! And there is more further to the east, but it was terrible weather and Dave had recently done a recce. He said that it was one big mess of brambles and blown over trees. So we decided to leave that for some other time!
|Jonty behind a flooded winze|
|Sharon looking at a dead end|
When we had seen it all went back to the car is. We will still very early! Which is how I like it. We had a little chat afterwards. Some of us had recently been in a new part of CRTT, and they figured that we might have to go there with the team, as it looked like a likely place where things would go wrong. I think checking that out is a good idea!
I managed to drive back without flooding the engine. Some of the puddles were a bit scarily deep! But all went well. So the year has started for the rescue team! The next thing to happen is a kit check. I am not sure yet if I will participate in that…
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