12th February 2012 - Tony Brocklebank
Friday's dig was called off due to the presence of large areas of frozen water everywhere – clear, shiny, slippy stuff it seems we spotted a full seventy two hours ahead of the International Rugby Board. Sunday was chosen for the rematch and Big Steve, Susie, Sue and I wandered up through fog which swathed everything from Preston to Clapham to emerge in glorious sunshine above a sea of cloud with Ingleborough and Penyghent rising island like above, like two huge white cruise ships stuck on a reef – you get the idea. It really was a very pleasant day on top.
After slogging to Legit Pot through ten inches of snow we got to work. Sue and Susie headed off to Little Ingleborough summit and Spike, Big Bill and Dingle 1 joined us to provide criticism and verbal abuse. Spike is without a doubt more use than the latter two put together.
After last week’s poor performance with snappers (the rock is very fractured and the fractures stop the blast spreading) we switched to capping with much more success, and managed to remove a reasonable pile of rock and permafrost, it's now possible to see down the hole, which is blocked with debris a foot or two down. Hopefully next time we'll be able to shift this. The draught was heading in, which made sense considering the obvious inversion layer weather conditions.
Big Steve entertained us with his new capping song and dance routine which although not very tuneful goes roughly like this – 'Tap, tap, tap, tap, tap, Bank, OUCH!' – and is accompanied by a wild, frenzied unidexter style dance. Very entertaining.
We were also to witness the first demonstration run of the new Dingle Hurling event. I'd like to request that if more members intend to take up Dingle Hurling, in which teams compete to see who can most artfully toss a Dingle head first down a shaft of choice, they please first check I'm not at the bottom of the hole focussed on rock removal. I'd hardly had time to register the clattering noises when I was suddenly speared to the rock face by an inverted and very confused Dingle. Next time I'd like to be at the top of the shaft please, where I'd be more than happy to act as judge and award style marks. Fitting the Dingle with a helmet next time might be a good idea too.
All in all an enjoyable, if somewhat painful, day out on the fells!