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Perry's Dam Shaft Bolting and Through Trip, (01/04/17)

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Last year in October when we did this trip we had decided that the second pitch needed to be properly bolted as a pull through. At the time we removed the old in-situ ropes. With Julian and Phil joining us on this trip we took the opportunity of extra bodies to help carry some of the gear to do the rebolt and to generally make things easy for getting onto the second pitch on this through trip. Karli had cut some 20mm diameter rebar lengths, that where destined to be used as pegs in the walling so that a short traverse from the level to the second pitch head could be installed.

After a good breakfast of bacon and sausage butties we all set off towards Perry's Reservoir. The shaft top was rigged and we abseiled down with the gear. Just a note: multiple 400mm lengths of 20mm rebar are bloody heavy! We all got down and proceeded to the second pitch head. Here the old pegs where removed and the new ones installed. Once that was done, the far side of the wall with a nice free hang could be bolted. It was so much easier to do this short pitch now, no rub points and most importantly you could do a pull through. We abseiled down the second pitch and then made our way along the crosscut to the third pitch. The rigging here was in a bit of mess with two ropes going down the pitch, so we cleaned that up a bit. For a pull through here, there was nothing really to be done - you just use the normal way of doing it with a knot and maillon, wrapped round both of the scaffold poles. After dropping this pitch we had a bit of chat and look around the stope which you enter at the bottom from the third pitch. We then did a short climb down into the short section of Caplecleugh High Level and went along it until we reached the large Bog Shaft pipe chamber. Looking around, nothing much had changed since October 2016, maybe a bit of extra rubble and rocks on the floor, but nothing major - all the ropes here where still visible. Here we handlined down the rubble slope to the open stope top. Some of us abseiled down into the stope from this point to climb back out and others used the pegs in the walls to traverse across. A short skip and hop through the stope and we were by the rise that drops you down to the Smallcleugh Horse Level. The bolting here was put in by myself and Alistair around 2006 and was looking still good - ah stainless steel.

We decided to have lunch just a bit further outbye on the level in the large stope you can easily climb up into. Lunch pic time. After lunch we continued on to the Middlecleugh Second Sun Vein junction, up the incline and at Carr's Cross Vein took a detour to Barron's Sump as Julian and Phil had never been there. It was a bit of a blast from the past coming to Barron's Sump. I am sure that the tight falls have become less tight since the first time we did this. After a whistle stop tour of Barron's sump we returned to the Middlecleugh Second Sun Vein and split up. Julian and Karli where going to exit back out via the surface shaft as they had to retrieve some gear along the way and myself, Pete and Phil exited via the portal.