In a nutshell: Weekly meetings Tues 7.00pm Stores / Union Bar, Tree Training Wed afternoon, weekend trips fortnightly during term. Club membership is £16 (click to buy online), first two trips of the year are £15 for new members, £35 thereafter. Bring food for the journey up, everything else provided for.
Why go caving?
31st March–7th April 2014
Striking out from the damp and dark of the UK ICCC ventured to a far off paradise, Sardinia. The caves are warm, the sun is hot, the wine is cheap. We had a wonderful time visiting Su Palu, Su Bentu, and Sa Routta 'e S'Edera and meeting the Nuoro caving club who kindly showed us round. I can see why we keep going back!
Feeling the winds of change the cavers of ICCC gathered to choose the lucky few who would lead them into the next year. Through several rousing speeches (mostly consisting of nominating someone else for the job), thrilling debates ("You do it" "I already did it, you do it"), and finally indisputably fair voting (nominating a coin toss as a candidate when you're losing is standard practice) the committee was chosen.
Committee: President: Tanguy Racine Treasurer: Oliver Myerscough Secretary: Elijah Choi Tackle Master: Jack Hare Tours Secretary: Rhys Tyers Medical Officer: William French Honorary Morale Officer: David Kirkpatrick
Awards: For Evans' Sake: Tanguy Racine for valiant attempts at decorating the SMCC Herman Herz: Samuel Page for narrowly escaping a boulder based assassination attempt by Kate
21–23rd March 2014
A lightweight trip to Yorkshire to round off the term. The keen crack team had a variety of adventures in Easegill on Saturday and a very lightweight team had a visit to the spectacular Alum.
In a brilliant display of cunning and subterfuge we organised a trip to the Mendips to conincide with Jarv's surprise birthday celebration. At long last we managed to complete the short round trip in Swildons on Saturday finding that on our previous attempts we had been mere metres from the correct way on. In the evening we joined the eclectic gathering of Jarv's friends and family and made a sizeable dent in the huge array of delcious treats and alcohol. On Sunday we relaxed on a sunny Priddy green until it was time to head home.
Yorkshire called upon us once more. We extensively visited Easegill with 4 different trips interweaving on the Saturday. We visited Top, Lanc, Cow, County, Link, and Wretched Rabbit. Sunday saw some enthusiasm but no action due to a bodged plan to retrieve some rope.
The Mendip trip proved exceptionally popular this year with nearly 25 cavers showing their faces at some point over the weekend. Swildons was the cave of choice for students (and Tetley) with an old lag contingent plumbing the depths of GB. Saturday night's festivities put most people off caving on Sunday but a keen team went and retrieved the ladder from Swildons and also looked at Eastwater.
A full minibus headed out to Derbyshire picking up a bedraggled hitchhiker (DKP) on the way. Lots of caving done, lots to Peak including an ambitious Peak <-> JH exchange (more ambitious in one direction I think) that was mostly succesful as well as a few trips to Eldon. We showed our faces at CHECC and danced the nights away with them.
Lots of cavers, lots of fun! Due to some sort of cascade effect everyone came on this trip. We managed a three way exchange (Stream, Flood, Bar) in Gaping Gill complete with a magical Chinese lantern display in the main chamber as well as trips to both Jingling and Wretched Rabbit. Most people managed a trip to Notts 2 on Sunday, remaining as entertaining and pretty as ever.
Another superb trip to Wales, blessed by rainbows and minimal drizzle. Agen Allwedd's distant turkey streamway got a visit by most of the group, whilst a smaller party did a photo recon of the main passage. Despite a hard trip, eveyone was eager to demonstrate their skills at a variety of caving games. The night left a few souls incapacitated on Sunday but the majority managed a bimble around Eglwys Faen.
The start of the caving year has come! A group of wide-eyed and eager freshers were led down the depths of OFD, visiting such sights as Top Waterfall and Swamp Creek, roused by classic caving songs; 'What shall we do with the drunken caver?', 'Captain Kangaroo' and 'Bingo Granny'. On Sunday most people went to get thoroughly confused in PYOs interweaving crawls and climbs, with a couple opting to get drenched walking instead.
Our next appearance will be in Beit Quad at fresher's fair, maybe we will see (or have seen) you there. After that join us in Princes Gardens each Wednesday at 1pm where we will be doing an equipment familiarisation session (read: climbing in trees with our caving kit) or at the Union Bar on Tuesdays at 7pm (starting 8/10/13) for beer and wildly exaggerated tales of past caving adventures.
27–29th September 2013
A hardened team of alpine expedition cavers braved the depths of Swildon's in a daring trip to the Mendips. The short round was nearly completed but, eager for adventure, everyone elected to go back through the ducks and sump (not because we couldn't find the way on). Sunday saw a resupply mission to Cheddar where some people bought ample supplies of cheese and cider after gorging on cream teas.
Imperial are currently on expedition Z Miga na Kuk (Slovenia 2013) and will be in the field July 12th – August 18th. Updates here will be rather patchy, but keep up to date directly from the mountain via Tweets and Facebook updates.
The ICCC once again leaves the confines of Yorkshire! We headed out to Andalucia in Spain for a week of caving, canyoning, via ferrata and most importantly; wine. We succesfully completed 3 caves, including 1 to a depth of 300metres. We traversed several via ferrata routes, a sport sure to return in future tours. And we had a go at 1 canyon. All the time making new friends amongst the local cavers.
The end of term spectacular! The winter decided to give it one more go so ICCC spent a great amount of time battling blizzard conditions and trudging through snow to go caving. Caves visited included Shuttleworth and Great Douk.
Home at last, the NPC! This weekend a small, rather international team headed into King Pot. The T-shapped passage made a lasting impression on everybody, a particularly fine first UK trip for two of our members. Sunday, however, was spent exploring the depths of Ingleton. The sweet shop made a lasting impression on everybody, a particularly fine first UK doss for two of our members.
Bullpot farm, ever a favourite for it's proximity to Easegill, once again proved most hospitable. On Saturday three teams went in three different entrances; Cow, Pippikin, and Wretched Rabbit. On Sunday, despite the blizzard conditions a team headed down Lancaster for a quick photo trip.
The first trip of the new year was a resounding success. It seems like everyone turned up. Swildon's saw a few teams completing tours to sump 1 and back and others bailing for hours before managing the short round. The night passed by in a blur of alcohol and caving games leaving many too tired for caving. A determined group headed to Eastwater on Sunday, with everyone else enjoying a variety of cakes and pastries.
Ah, Winter Tour! Recently we've had a lotta lotta snow. This year we had a lotta lotta rain, while the temperature stayed resolutely above freezing. Though this restricted our choice of caves, it meant that at least we didn't have any problems driving to the entrances!
The usual mix of hardcore caving, experimental cooking (with the now excellent NPC facilities) and one-on-one tuition of leading and rigging skills was enjoyed by over a dozen cavers who made it along.
Come rain or shine, we go caving. In this case mostly rain which lead to some difficulties. A Saturday trip to Giants had to be cut short due to concerns about the water level, however a successful trip to Oxlow introduced many to the delights of SRT. On Sunday our Peak Cavern permit proved useless with the cave being inaccesible due to flooding but undeterred we went to Carlswark Cavern instead. It may not be as big as Peak but it was just as fun!
This trip marked the beginning of the SRT season with a classic Lost John's exchange. We rigged Centipede and Dome, and down beyond to the main streamway. Most turned back at the Battleaxe, but a few brave souls descending a booming Valhalla and marvelled at the shuddering bulk of the waterfall. Clare's birthday was celebrated in style with candles & cake at the Battleaxe Traverse. We delved into the delights of Notts 2 on Sunday. Here a novel system of ladders, scaffolding and cinder blocks leads down the vertical entrance shaft and into the very enjoyable and pretty streamway.
Gathering together all the various results of our summer expedition is taking a long time—the complexity of the total, now connected, system is requiring a lot of effort to produce a survey on the same projection. We have thousands of photos to edit & select from, hundreds of expedition reports & stories to gather. However, motivated by some immoveable deadlines, we have managed to get together a provisional written report (as submitted to our Union as our summer tour report), and produced a provisional Extended-Elevation survey (with Slovene labels, for submission to the Jamar magazine).
We'll continue working on our surveys, extending & editing our expedition report, and try and get some of the many photos uploaded here.
As if compensating for last trip this time we ferried 18 cavers to Whitewalls in Llangattock. On Saturday we crowded into Agen Allwedd and split into two teams, one having a bimble around near the second choke and another storming up and down Turkey Streamway. Sunday saw a return to Ogof Pen Eryr with it's corkscrew climb charming many freshers. A 'crack' team also descended into Ogof Cnwc to scout the way to Daren.
Another year, another clutch of freshers to introduce to the wonders of Sports Caving! Our ranks were rather decimated by fresher flu, but we still pulled off a lovely trip to Wales getting to experience the Ogof Ffynnon Ddu Streamway in all its roaring greatness, and then sample the aquatic depths of Porth yr Ogof on the Sunday. Pizza and crumble, followed by caving games enjoyed by the cosy log fire of the WSG hut.
ICCC is 50! What better way is there for a caving club to celebrate its anniversary than by going caving? So we treked to Yorkshire to find the NPC overrun by hordes of prior members (almost unbroken back to the early 70s). On Saturday we rigged Flood, Bar and Stream, then returned to the hut (via the New Inn) to wolf a massive curry, and crack out the slide projector. A truly wonderful weekend, all the better because we just got together, like we always have, to go caving.
Our 18 year Odyssey in the Hollow Mountain (Tolminski Migovec) has reached a notable milestone with the connection of Vrtnarija to System Migovec, making it the longest cave in Slovenia!
It's difficult to put into words how much this means to the people who have spent years (even decades!) dedicating their free time to this exploration project. Clewin (first expedition 1997) put it beautifully: "Everybody has a made a contribution, from surveying hundreds of meters of horizontal passages to pushing ridiculously tight rifts or squalid muddy dead ends to feeding hungry cavers in the bivvy."
And so off to Migovec again!
We start the expedition with Vrtnarija at 11025/888 m and the recently extended Sysmig at 11846 / 970 m. Searching for the elusive connection between the two systems (and thus forging the longest cave in Slovenia) and deep camping in Vrtnarija to continue the exploration of the 2010 and 2011 finds are the main aims of this 5 week expedition. However, there are many other projects on the side, and we will be tweeting updates from our mountaintop bivouac.