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Report - River Gade Flood Culvert - Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire - Jan 2015

Discussion in 'UK Draining Forum' started by Rik UE, Jan 27, 2015.

  1. Rik UE

    Rik UE 28DL Regular User
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    My visit

    Got a tip off from a fellow forum member Northern Ninja, and a lot of information regarding this little local explore right on my doorstep from him, so big thanks for that much appreciated mate.

    Off I went to order some waders as at the end it was indeed waist deep as it flows in to a local fishing lake, They arrived and must say I was a bit dubious at first as to whether they would really keep water out but they actually really worked well, need to use them some more!

    Off I plodded down to the culvert, all kitted up in my waders, access is a doddle, I was in, pitch black inside for about 4 miles, so I had plenty of battery power for the torch, my £10 cree effort did "ok" but now I realise its time to grab a P7.2 and I used to laugh at the torch geeks Paul and Steve, never again! :D

    I was taking my time this first visit, I hadn't a clue what I was stepping into and really first venture into underground and culverts, would have been nice to see a bit more history, but the town is a relatively new town so a lot of concrete, but was still a blooming good explore, there was a few side tunnels that definitely need exploring and there was one part where there was a vertical pipe pouring out water and a very powerful side pipe, never realised just how powerful water could be gushing out at an pretty decent rate out some of these outlets.

    I was trying to get to the end the first time I visited, but I had been in there for a good few hours, mucking around trying to get half decent shots in complete darkness and with a pretty inadequate torch really for the job in hand, I decided to turn back because I didn't really want to pop up any drain covers to get out, wasn't sure where I was going to end up, so I walked back against the flow of the water, bloody good exercise I tell you that!

    I visited a second time and as had some half decent shots of most of the culvert, decided to power on walk straight to the end, and that's what I did, some more nice bits, and tunnels shapes, certainly more interesting than the square concrete culvert, saw light, the end was in sight, carried on walking there was a lot of silt or sand or whatever it might be under my feet, certainly got a sinking feeling, used my tripod to see just how deep things really were, as I was a bit concerned about the camera bag going under, luckily moving along at the end I felt concrete bottom, was waist deep and I am six foot, so I wouldn't recommend this for short arses at the end, the first half is fine in wellies (just about dependant on rainfall)

    Got to the end, as was greeted by the quacking of some ducks in the fishing lake peering at me through the locked gate, and must have wondered what the hell I was doing there :D

    Have to say where the water joined that lake I was standing still for a bit taking some photographs, and my word the water was cold, had to get moving again, wasit high in cold water, I thought that wasn't such a good idea, turned around and walked back, once back fully inside the culvert was a nice feeling, when hitting that relatively warm water again, but boy its not a short culvert and it certainly builds the muscles up on the legs.

    It was a cracking explore, great it was on my local doorstep, and a bit shout out to Northern Ninja for the heads up! Much appreciated mate and this now I think will be more new playground, might have to check out some of the side tunnels I think.

    Enough waffling and hope you enjoy the photographs, best I could do with a 8 year old camera and a £10 torch, but considering it was pitch black I don't think they are a bad effort :)

    Thanks for looking and I think I really have the underground bug now! I blame Northern Ninja ;)

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    #1 Rik UE, Jan 27, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2015

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  2. Ojay

    Ojay Admin
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    Re: River Gade Flood Culvert - Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire

    Some interesting features within all that concrete :thumb
     
  3. Reich

    Reich 28DL Regular User
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    Re: River Gade Flood Culvert - Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire

    Looks pretty nice, might have to start under grounding myself once Ive finished getting as high as i can! ;)
     
  4. Rik UE

    Rik UE 28DL Regular User
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    Re: River Gade Flood Culvert - Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire

    Yes concrete city Ojay :D

    Want to look at some historical ones next in the local areas!
     
  5. Rik UE

    Rik UE 28DL Regular User
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    Re: River Gade Flood Culvert - Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire

    I still love a rooftop, especially in London, but the bonus of underground is how warm it was, I wrapped up in about 4 layers as I thought it would be cold, and yet I was sweating like pig after 10mins! :D
     
  6. Northern ninja

    Northern ninja Hiding in the shadows
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    Re: River Gade Flood Culvert - Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire

    Looks a good report glad people can now see pictures of this place since i didnt have my camera the night i did it.
     
  7. Nickindroy

    Nickindroy A Porky Prime Cut
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    Re: River Gade Flood Culvert - Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire

    Lovely stuff! :thumb
     
  8. Rik UE

    Rik UE 28DL Regular User
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    Re: River Gade Flood Culvert - Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire

    Thanks for comments folks, first drain explore ever and it was strangely enjoyable, even when up to my waist in freezing cold water :D
     
  9. Oort

    Oort The spice expands consciousness.
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    Great report and I think you did an excellent job with the pics, good work mate!
     
    Rik UE likes this.
  10. Oxygen Thief

    Oxygen Thief Admin
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    Looks OK that does mate.
     
  11. Alley

    Alley Conspicuous Loiterer
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    All I can see is spiders :eek:

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  12. Snake Oil

    Snake Oil go in drains
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    that looks alright for concrete :thumb The side pipe in pic 3 definitely needs a look at, fingers crossed theres a nice bit of fresh at the end :)
     
  13. Rik UE

    Rik UE 28DL Regular User
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    Oh yes!

    Never realised, couldn't see them when down there, or I wasn't bothered and looking for them, but theres a bloody lot there lol :D
     
  14. Rik UE

    Rik UE 28DL Regular User
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    There is a good few side pipes that I think need checking out soon :)
     
  15. paulpowers

    paulpowers Massive Member
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