Big Bat - Surely Lead - Survey Trip Report
Date: April 1, 2015
We started today's trip nice and early at 7am because the weather was supposed to be really nice and we wanted to get out in time for a hike in the sunshine. 3 of us made it for the trip and 2 slept in...I mean cancelled last minute. After suiting up we headed down to the calibration rocks and recorded our instrument readings.
20 minutes into the mushroom entrance we made our way to the new dig, Surely. Surely passage starts with a tight little belly crawl in the mud that last about 30 feet and drops you into a mud slide if you aren't careful. Being the careful cavers we are, we whipped a length of webbing out of our packs and down the slide we went.
The bottom of the slide has two passage, one leading up and one leading down. Since the weather upside was still a bit brisk we chose to continue deeper into the dark. Soon we had entered a smooth walled creek passage and once again the choice was upon us. Not wanting to second guess our previous decision we once again turned toward the deep and followed the passage downstream.
About 200 feet downstream we started to think we were hearing a roaring approaching and started to wonder if we might find a pit. Just shy of 300 feet we were sure we were soon to come upon a waterfall. And not to be disappointed, so we did. Due to the mist and fog it took us 4 tries to get a laser disto reading of the waterfall of 69 feet in height. To the right hand side was a scree slope of rocks and we made the decision to continue surveying to the bottom.
We had planned on ending our survey at the bottom of the waterfall, but the room was a beautiful lake. The room was over 100 feet wide and probably close to 300 feet long. The passage had backed up and was full of water in a lake of unknown depth. When we were careful with our lights it made an amazing mirror pool making the entire room seem huge.
In the middle of the pool was a small islet with a rock formation that looked uncannily square. The water was brisk, but we knew the weather above was sunny and warm so we took the short swim leaving our survey gear behind. Hopefully no-one will fault us this small indulgence. As we drew closer to the islet the formation became even more eerily square. Being first in the group to the islet, myself a fair swimmer, I rounded the other side of the island to find a door of all things! A great iron door ornate with runes I have never seen before. The door showed signs of rust, but also had a sheen of oil as if it had but recently been tended. The rest of the group now at my back, thrice I knocked and called "Hello". Upon the third knock a silence fell, the door swung open, and there stood Beowulf himself standing watch over the grave of Gendel! Happy April Fools.
Total survey length 666 feet.