By Mike Soulby
2nd November 2008:
Katie, Ali and Alisa had space for one more person for a trip they had planned but had at least two interested cavers to choose from but couldn’t decide who to pick. So they performed a good old ‘biscuit toss’ to decide who to take, now please remove any vile connotations that might now have been placed in your head, what they did was more akin to tossing a coin! Luckily for me [Mike] I was chosen by the biscuit, and who said cavers weren’t weird! HA! Now normally the demand for going on a certain caving trip is pretty low, but you can’t blame people for wanting to have a crack at this one. The trip is probably one of the best tourist trips in Derbyshire, if not the country, from Titan to the Peak Cavern showcave, via the amazing White River Series.
My head was spinning from the night before, I can’t quite remember when I last caved without a hangover, however my kit was cold and damp and it felt strangely refreshing putting it on. Once we had kitted up we were ready to go so made the short walk to the Titan entrance enclosure. We had the usual faff that the titan entrance involves but we were soon underground, in the belly of the beast so to speak. Titan is an amazing place and being a member of SUSS means I have been fortunate enough to come to Titan many times but I always feel very privileged to be in such a magnificent place. I clipped to the traverse line and stepped into the window, it is always a fluttery moment as everyone knows gravity is stronger at the top of a huge pitch, that’s why they put bigger bolts in.
We all made it to the bottom with relatively little faffing, although the moment Alisa knocked a fairly sizeable rock from the event horizon down the second pitch whilst I was still on it without shouting ‘below’ was mildly concerning. Now this trip has a bit of everything, which is why it’s so good! Boulder chokes, crawls, stomping passage ways, muddy crawls, fixed ladders, traverse lines, up SRT, down SRT, wet bits, dry bits, flat out bits, pretty bits, very pretty bits, tourists and even a place to take a bath! Now a full account of the 5 hour trip would take me too long to write and it would probably end up reading more like a route description so I haven’t bothered.
We were all competent cavers we made our way through without much happening just enjoying the caving for what it was, varied and lots of fun! Also Alisa and Ali had never been to the white river series and they both made the typical silent jaw-dropped response when they saw the actual white river for the first time. It was an amazing trip from start to finish and would recommend it to anyone.