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Report - Paris Catacombs - 1st September

Discussion in 'European and International Sites' started by Willis, Sep 4, 2007.

  1. Willis

    Willis 28DL Full Member
    28DL Full Member

    May 8, 2007
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    As me and bubblehead wonder around Waterloo station aimlessly trying to spot a guy, by the name of Rigsby, who happens to be coming with us. It finally dawns on me; "Bugger me, I'm actually going to the Paris Catacombs", considering I'm a noob I reckon I'm one lucky bugger!

    When we eventually find Rigsby, after a trek around half of the outside of the building (no small feat), we do the usual introductions, how was your journey etc... We head off outside the station again to find something to photograph as we have a good 8 hours to kill until our train. 2 hours gone, good. On the way back in to the station we walk past a big black guy and as he passes I glance over, when I had actually walked past I head "You wana gat man?", theres me thinking :confused: turns out he wanted to shoot me :wanker

    The next morning after an eventful night sleeping in the cafe next to the Eurostar check in, we meet up with Itinerant Child and Syme. We ended waiting until about 20 minutes before our train left waiting for OT, figures that we all forgot that we were actually meeting him in Paris :eek:

    So here we are getting changed and checking gear to get ready for the entrance into the Cata's. A quick dash and short crawl and were in. In the first 50metres my tripod and 3 bottles of water I have all drop out of me. I've been in the Cata's nigh on 60 seconds and I already hate it.

    We eventually go on to explore alot of the southern parts of the GRS network an area called "Montsouris" (copied from OT's report). The twists, turns, crawls, high ceilings and some spectacular graf really do being to warm on me. We eventually stop after a few hours of wondering to have a snack and drink in a room I cant remember the name of.



    We then pack up lunch and head off to see the concrete man walking through the wall. On the journey there OT noted that to see this is really the only reason you need waders to visit the Cata's at all. Brilliant I thought I've got chest waders! How I'd regret thinking that when I eventually took them off to literally have my own sweat evaporate for an hour from my trousers underneath!
    I eventually set up my camera after being in awe for a good 5 minutes and try to get some slightly different angles on what I know is a very well cataloged piece of history. My efforts didn't come out as planned...



    We then pack up the cameras and move on again exploring various rooms as we go. Unfortunately I was not particuraly in a "photography" mood but was very much set on taking it all in, so there aren't as many pictures as I would have hoped but ohwell I still had an amazing time!

    We visit various other rooms on our travels whilst still trying to keep to a time so we can meet Paulo and his group at 9pm. Wondering through the various rooms here are some of the pictures I took of the more famous bits, whilst taking the shot of the robot OT and Syme disappeared in search of a secret room, did you guys ever find that?



    We headed off again in search of Bysance and on the way there were many a gas encounter thanks to bubblehead and his mouth/arse. Note to self and others, don't let that man eat cheese whilst in an enclosed network with him. You will regret it! On the way we spotted a particuraly nice little junction:


    After packing up the cameras for the last time before we met Paulo, we marched down to Bysance where we met two other groups of Cataphiles,
    Like OT sais in his report its fair to say we packed that place out that night! Much booze, chocolate, laughter and knowledge passed hands before eventually we headed off at about 11.30pm to go in search of the legendary bones and our eventual sleeping room.
    On this particular walk it was apparent for me atleast that the lack of sleep the night before in the train station seriously began to catch up with me. I was literally falling asleep against the wall as I waited for the others to finish taking there pics of the bones and OT doing a double check of where we were heading. It was fair to say though we still had a bloody freaky moment when Rigsby came across a particularly odd skull that Syme continued to put over his face and properly scared all of us when we all saw the horror that the picture OT had captured on his camera revealed!
    As we neared our sleeping area we passed through an area of the Cata's called "The Bunker", unfortunately I only took one pretty rubbish picture of this place which does not convey what the term "The Bunker" really meant, although I'm sure most of you can guess.


    Onwards and northwards then off to the overnight rest spot. There was rumour that the legendary French explorer Rug may be paying us a visit, unfortunately not this time! Maybe next time hay...

    By the time all sleeping areas had been shot gunned and a warm meal was down me I was well and truly knackered. Beers were handed out and we settled down with some sound advice from OT about what could happen at night. With in 10 minutes there was some comic waking up by OT on bubblehead due to his extremely loud snoring! You should of slept outside mate haha!
    In the night some French Cataphiles set off what I assume to of been a signal flare or smoke bomb, quite near our room as it filled it with smoke in no time. Just lying there, me and Itinerant Child had a short giggle and just rolled over and went back to sleep, only for me to rudely awoken by the fog horn that was Itinerant Child's snoring. Mike, get a cap for your nose mate :D.

    The next morning OT, Syme, Paulo and Itinerant Child set off for a quick early morning explore leaving me atleast still asleep! For the remainder of the day we took it fairly easy, visiting all the major northern rooms including the "Cube Room". We do pass on the way back from the "Cube Room" something called the swimming pool, a short couple of connected tunnels that the water is really quite deep in. Me being the only one in chest waders obviously has to give this ago. I got further than anyone else has from Britain apperantly but bugger me there was still some way to go until I could of got round. I'll put it in perspective for you, I', 6"3 possibly 6"4 and I only got 3/4's of the way in chest waders and it was still getting deeper. With nothing to put my feet on along the sides like there had been in other tunnels I cut my losses and went back feeling beaten. Ohwell, I'll take my wetsuit next time :)

    From here we continued to go and meet up with Paulo and his group again in the "Mineralogy Office". I have to say Paulo, I do like your taste in music :thumb, again I tryed some different angles but once again didn't come out to well:


    Now it was hard and fast south, (we secretly had a few competions with Paulo, one such being that we had to beat him to the exit, of course we did...) we hit the sand crawl and then on down through more water and to the exit. The exit I must say was run with military precision, and we were up and out within 60 seconds with a local Security guard from one of the surrounding buildings asking if we were "tourists". Ignoring him we all hastily grabbed our bags and made for the metro station.

    When we actually sat down on the metro, I remember myself and Itinerant Child discussing what it will be like when the Imodium wheres off, especially sitting on the shaky metro. Low and behold 5 minutes in, I need the loo. Bad. My face must of been a picture as it certainly had Itinerant Child in stitches.

    Covered in muck we grabbed out stuff from the lockers and went for a wash, out for a kebab and a fair few large beers. Job done.

    Many many thanks to all those who came especially OT for being the guide. I can honestly say I will be back down there asap.

    I'm sorry if some of this doesn't make sense or is miss typed, I will edit when I get home from work. For now, I hope you enjoy :)

    Willis. ​
    #1 Willis, Sep 4, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 4, 2007

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