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Ogof Ffynnon Ddu 2 (top) Great Oxbow Series

Wednesday March 18th 2015

Members present: Andrew Vick,  Catherine Moody

Report by Catherine Moody

We wanted a shortish trip to do before heading home. I fancied the Great Oxbow Series; I'd been to the top end from the Skyhook a couple of years ago and was now confident of the traverses at the other end after doing them on Saturday. Trip time estimate 3-4 hours based on a guess of 1 hour to the start of the traverses, 1 hour to the Skyhook, 1 hour back to entrance, 1 hour extra to allow for faff/photos. I was curious as to how accurate this would actually be so tried to keep track...

Approximate timings (to within a couple of mins):

~Enter cave 11:30
~Edward's Shortcut to Shatter Pillar 12:00
~Rig Skyhook, Andy discovers he's lost his balaclava, arrive at start of traverses 12:30
~Cross Midnight traverses, photos, sketchy climb into Great Oxbow Series, explore side branches to sump/pitch respectively, more photos, temporarily lose camera, few more photos, return to Skyhook 14:00
~Descend, derig, return to Shatter Pillar (14:35ish), Andy goes on a scouting mission back the way to the crystal pool and beyond for a balaclava hunt (failed), eat cream eggs (thanks Ade!), back along Selenite & Salubrious, Andy goes on another scouting mission along Gnome Passage to start of Edward's Shortcut, still no luck. Meet Gottzone and Dan near White Arch who had found the mystery balaclava near Shatter Pillar.
~Exit 15:15
Total time 3 h 45 min
So, without photos and balaclava hunting, 3 hours would have been about right!

I could have easily spent hours photographing up there: partly cos I'm a bit shit and it takes ages to get anything remotely decent, mostly cos its really rather pretty indeed. Good little afternoon trip!