NEWS OF THE AVALON-TEAM - 1997
NEWS ABOUT OUR HOMEPAGE
* Take a look at a new page, the
Picture Gallery of the Grotte
des Emotions; a beautiful cave discovered by us in 1995!!!
* Counter problem has been solved...
* Our activity reports of 1994-95-96 have finally been translated in English
thanks to Guy!
* Some jerk at SKYNET (our Internet providor) has lost all counters.
This means that our counter has been reset to zero!
* A picture gallery with nice pictures was added. This
is only the beginning, wait and see! Meanwhile, take a look by clicking
on this logo and go straight to a new item: the "Access News" that will
bring you news and information about access and protection of our Belgian
We finally (after 6 months of summer-rest) retook the dig in the Chawresse
cave, in our "Bolero". At the foot of the 13 m-pitch, Rudi, Guy and
Paul forced the very narrow terminus. Rudi went down a small pitch
(3-4 m), followed about 6 m horizontally untill it got too narrow again.
Further on, it seems larger... This really is like Ravel's Bolero!
For several weekends, we helped Jos and Chris of Persephone in their discovery
near Rochefort. We stabilized a very unstable (of course!) passage
that gives access to a big room. An impressive construction of aluminium
tubes and panels is now in place and will make it possible to continue the
exploration in a safe way.
PYRENEES, EMOTIONS AND OTHER STUFF
We're just back from a 10-day stay in the French Pyrenees
and still dazzled after having visited the fabulous Réseau Lachambre; probably
the most beautiful cave in Europe. After having seen this, we'll have a
hell of a time getting used to Belgian caves again...
Anyway, we continued digging for several weekends
in the Grotte des Emotions (not in the "Pigs Hole", that will have to wait
'till Summer of 1998) but no real progress was made. Meanwhile we're
helping two friends of ours, Jos & Chris from SC Persephone, in a cave near
Rochefort that they discovered last year.
GROTTE DES EMOTIONS
Our dig (called the "pigs hole") above the sump had
to be abandoned after 3 days of hard work because of the very rainy weather
that we had the last days. It will of course be continued... in the
summer of 1998. Another dig in this cave however seems to be promising...
The "Topo Foutue"-series can now be considered as
"terminated". Final extension is 615 m.
GROTTE DES EMOTIONS
The dowstream sump was dived again, this time by two divers (Luc Funcken
and Serge Delaby). They stayed 4 hours behind the sump and did a +15
m climb up to a higher level. Some surveying was done as well.
The potential of the cave behind the sump was confirmed: it goes on!
We also saw that there is a possible way of shortcircuiting the sump by
digging through a mud-filled rift above the sump. Of course we quickly
started digging there: after 2 days of work in unbelievably muddy conditions
we progressed 3,5 m in good direction. Problem is that we are here
in a very dangerous part of the cave that floods up to the roof in case
14/09/1997: CHANTOIR DELLIEUX
The survey of the new part "Réseau de la Topo Foutue" is finally finished.
We just passed the 600 m-mark: total length = 601 m. Meanwhile a third
junction with the classic part of the cave is allmost realized.
07-08/09/97: GROTTE DES EMOTIONS
downstream sump (100 litres/sec!!) was dived AND passed by Luc Funcken (S.C.U.C.L.).
About 50 m of large galleries were quickly explored. Several leads seem
to go on. To be continued! During this weekend a big fluoresceine dye-test
was conducted. Also we measured the amount of water passing in the underground
river (100 l/sec), and resurging at the resurgence (200 l/s), some 2 kilometres
further. Take a look at the picture: it shows the super-muddy but very powerful
underground stream, near the sump.
Our Internet providor SKYNET gives us as from now a very comfortable 10
MB of free webspace; instead of the miserable 2 MB we had before. This will
allow us to show more and better quality pictures and drawings and solves
all our space-problems regarding the "English translation" of this site.
As a direct result, this "HOT NEWS" has already been illustrated with a
couple of pictures.
31/8/97: CHANTOIR DELLIEUX
In the "Réseau de la Topo Foutue" we have enlarged the Bingo Passage
(= the new link between the classic part of the cave and our new "Topo Foutue"-part).
As a result, the time to access the "Topo Foutue" is reduced from 1 hour
to only 10 minutes.
Other link: after digging some 5 m far in a little but ventilated gallery,
we reached a big passage. New passage? No, a carbide spot on the wall indicated
that we weren't the first ones here. This was known territory: in fact we
made a new link between the "Topo Foutue" and the "Réseau Bowling"; near
the "Galerie des Surprises". The Weron-Dellieux System is more and more
looking like a dish of spaghetti. We also continued surveying the "Topo
Foutue" thus passing 565 m of development.
29/8/97: AVALON HOMEPAGES
Finally found some time to continue. The part "Caving in Belgium" is making
progress; in fact I "only" need to make the 25 descriptions of "classic
The English translation of our sites is also advancing well. I hope to have
it finished in November.
I also want to express my gratitude to all the people that send me (mostly
encouraging) E-mails: it gives me the courage to finish this time-consuming
activity, called "webmastering".
Here we are again, sun-tanned after 3 weeks of exploration in the French
and Spanish Pyrenees, in the Pierre-Saint-Martin area. What's new? First
we re-explored the Gouffre GASPI and pushed it from -260m to -285m. The
cave ends there: very narrow sump. We also found a parallel series of pitches
between -70 and -130m, featuring a nice P40.
The biggest undertaking was reviewing Pozo Estella (AN3), a -700m deep cave
ending in an enormous boulder choke. After rigging the 450 m of pitches,
we held one "raid" to the bottom and inspected the terminus of the cave.
Of course, we didn't pass it, but since there is a formidable amount of
air (better call it "stormy wind") disappearing in the choke, it would be
of real interest to start a dig there. This is however difficult to realize
since it is about 2 kilometres away from the base of the pitches; and this
in a pretty tough cave!
The big surprise was the discovery of an insignificant entrance (30 x
20 cm: see the picture above!) situated
at an altitude of 2200 m. As usual, we found this the last 2 days of our
stay. After enlarging the hole, we soon went down a wide 25 m-pitch, a P8,
and a beautiful free-hanging 30 m pitch, 6 m in diameter. Then - oh surprise
- a gigantic shaft began. Throwing some rocks in it, indicated a depth of
well over 200 m!! I went down it for some 90 metres, using our last rope
and spits. This cave, AN506, will probably junction with the stream-up part
of the Pozo Estella. To be continued in 1998.
The connection between our "Topo Foutue" and the "classic" Dellieux was
realized on July, 13th. Name of this passage: "Bingo". Thanks
to this passage we can now very rapidly get into our newly discovered "Topo
Foutue". Also, everyone will now be able to visit it (also the fatties).
After weeks and weeks of hard work Guy & Rik found a nice 13 m pitch. At
the bottom a small stream soon disappeares into a little crack in the floor.
Surveyed length of the "Topo Foutue" reached 535 m. We even reached the
same altitude as the entrance by discovering a spacious room were we found
a small part of a Mammoth-tooth. This part is very close to the classic
part of the cave, so we hope to make a connection between them soon. The
total length of the Weron-Dellieux System is now 3600 m!
After 6 weeks of hard work the surveyed length now exceeds 430 m and at
least 75 m weren't surveyed yet. We explored a complex collapse-area with
lot's of small passages, chokes and rooms. This part rises very high, in
fact we must be near the entrance level! Our "intervention" of these past
months has pushed the total length of the Weron-Dellieux System from 3000
m to +/- 3500m.
The small chaps didn't get through neither, so we'll have to use some more
convincing methods.. We hear a distant river roaring and that is very stimulating!
Meanwhile, after several weekends, we seem to be approaching some sort of
pit. We guess it must be over 10 m. deep, but it could be too narrow.
* CHANTOIR DELLIEUX
Over the past 2 weeks we doubled the new part! Total length must
be more than 400 m, depth about 70 m. We found a series of wide and impressive
avens that we need to climb out. To be continued.
* CHANTOIR DELLIEUX
Sunday 18th of May Rudi and Paul discovered an important continuation. It
was pushed further on over the past 2 weeks. 200 metres of passages have
been surveyed, deepest point reached -91 m. We baptised this part "Réseau
de la Topo Foutue" because the big survey of the Weron-Dellieux System,
that was just finished, has to be done all over again! THE TORTURE NEVER
STOPS (thank you, Frank Zappa)
Rik & Guy finally got through the fissure that that have been enlarging
the past 5 weeks and found a pitch with the amazing depth of ... 2 metres!
But all hope is not lost: a narrow crack is visible. The small guys in the
club will have to take a look at it first!