The group met in the main chamber of Gaping Gill. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

The group met in the main chamber of Gaping Gill. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

Two cavers were rescued from a Yorkshire Dales system after they were trapped by rising water.

The men, both aged 22, were part of a larger party exploring routes in Gaping Gill on Thursday.

The group of nine met up in the main chamber of the pothole and all but the two men made their way to the surface safely via Bar Pot.

The two men were then reported overdue and the Cave Rescue Organisation was called out about five minutes past midnight.

A team spokesperson said: “They had tried to exit via Corky’s Pot, but realised that water levels had risen, so retreated to Bar Pot, which had been de-rigged.

“One CRO team set off into Corky’s Pot, but encountered an excess of water – rain on snow melt – and retreated.

“Another went into Bar Pot, very soon came across the missing pair and accompanied them to the surface, for transport back to Clapham in a team Land Rover.

“In the belief that CRO would not have enough cavers available for an extended search, the duty controller had called neighbouring Upper Wharfedale Fell Rescue Association. Their cavers arrived at CRO Base, just as the mispers were found.”

The incident saw the new vehicle used for the first time 'in anger'. Photo: CRO

The incident saw the new vehicle used for the first time 'in anger'. Photo: CRO

A spokesperson added: “Happily, the overdue cavers were found quickly after acting in exactly the correct manner for their situation, which was sitting tight in a safe refuge spot and waiting for assistance to arrive.

“Once everyone was out of the system and off the hill, the overdue cavers were reunited with their team mates back at the depot with a cup of tea and some biscuits.”

The incident was the first time the Clapham-based team had used its new Honda Pioneer sit-in ATV on an actual rescue. The vehicle was used to carry a communications team and all the necessary caving equipment up to Bar Pot on the flanks of Ingleborough, so that the rescue cavers were able to walk up from the Land Rover at Trow Gill, without carrying heavy equipment.

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