Freshers' Trip:
12-14 October 2007

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Author: Rachel Younger

Present: Aaron Dobson, Amelia Seifert, Bekah Blits, Brenda Diamond, Cathy Storrie, Chris Small, Conál McCartan, Craig Campbell, Ffion Bell, Frances Rooney, Rachel Younger, Roisín Lindsay, Semele Turro, John McShane, Aidan Gribbin, Shane Diamond, Stephen Read, Emma Ross, Eoghan Mullan, Stephen McCullagh, John McManus, Espe Diaz.


Boho is a labyrinth. At least it seemed that way when we went inside and continuously got lost and made our way back to the entrance about four times. It's funny how different the inside of a cave looks compared to the very straightforward survey in our hands. I think we're here, I say, and Eoghan says yeah, maybe. Or here, pointing somewhere completely different. The thing is, both of us are almost equally in the dark. Literally.

Finally we make it somewhere. It's called the calcite crawls, and it's tight. Never before have I felt like I was being hugged by a rock. When we finally birthed ourselves out of the crawl, we were in a pretty exquisite little cavern, Henry's Hall (I think). Then we got lost in the maze. I guess not everything can be perfect.

But I should probably backtrack for a minute. To the partying, of course. On Friday night we went to the pub and socially lubricated ourselves and chatted. Back at the cabin Semele and I introduced my favorite American drinking game, Kings. Things that looked fun when drunk (like squeezing through small tables) were regretted in the morning when most of us were in a lot of pain.

On the second night, after a day of hardy caving, we were all zombies. So we decided the best solution was to go to the pub. There was no bus (or rather we were all nice enough to let Bus have the night off) so we had to go back in small loads in John McManus's car. And the last lucky car-full (Cathy, Aaron, Steve Bus and me) got to go to "The Hoo". John crazily sped over narrow backcountry roads and up a little driveway until we reached a small farmhouse. Really quite a beautiful little spot, but I wouldn't want to sleep there.

I chose to go to the wet cave the next day, Pollnagollum of the Boats. If I was hung over when I got in I quickly got over it since I was immediately submerged in very cold water. Jock said the water was actually warmer than usual, but that made no difference to me. After walking along the river for a while we got to a place they called the duck. I had no idea what this meant until I watched Emma go completely underwater and then heard her voice from the other side. So we all went through and continued our trek down the river and up and over some rocks until we got to a point where we had to swim. The walls surrounding us were red-ish and rippled and had sharp edges ("the wetsuit shredder" said Jock). After this we turned around and made out way out, the hardest part being finding the cracks we crawled in through. I somehow managed to be the first one out, and I exhaustedly lay on the mossy rocks and caught my breath. Never has daylight seemed so beautiful.