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Report - Gridiron, Drain

Discussion in 'UK Draining Forum' started by Zero, Oct 7, 2007.

  1. Zero

    Zero Guest

    Visited with Loops and Dsankt

    A little bit of a lucky find. We had no idea it was there and our original intention was to explore the northern reaches of the Ravensbourne, which until now had been unexplored due to wader problems.

    We met up outside a bus stop near Bromley south station, said our meets and greets and got kitted up and headed down the smaller southern entrance of the Ravensbourne. We had a little bit of a walk to get back to the main pipe due to our original access being changed a little bit. Before long we found ourselves at the end of the main line and standing on the barrier slide at the end.

    On the other side the water level increased to 3 ft as the pipe split into two. The right being slightly more silted due to diverting planks a little further up. Torches back on and up we went before long the pipe joined back together as one and after a few side pipes and a possible drain access, The roof got a little bit lower.

    Hmmm not looking good. We continued with the now borderline backbreaking walk for another 15 minutes before the pipe split into two again. This time getting even lower. It looked like it opened up the other side so we waddled ourselves underneath it getting hair fulls of spiders in the process.

    Onwards. Another 5 minutes and the pipe split into two again, once more getting even smaller. This was getting crazy since i had no idea how far the tunnel went it could keep doing this for another 5 miles or the end could be round the corner. We debated it a little bit before we decided to head back.

    We walked back to the open air barrier wall and sat down taking a few casual photos here and there, including a few of the main line, before deciding to head back.

    By the time we got to our exit it was already dark. So what now. I was up for something else but dint know what. In the end we decided to have a little look up stream so we headed off into the jungle. Literally it was mad!.

    As we slowly progressed down the backs of peoples gardens we joked about all the little bridges that had been built to give the owners access to the 2 meter plot of land on the other side.

    "Hello, what are you doing down there..."

    Eeep. We turned around to see an elderly lady in her garden. DS turned and replied.

    "Were just walking down your canal, you should do it sometime you might enjoy it, how comes everyone else has a bridge apart from you?"

    "We only just realized the river was here a few weeks ago!".

    We continued the brief chat before continuing on. As we were barging through thorns and prickles another group of people who were bringing in there shopping called out to us. After a brief chat explaining what we were doing here in the middle of the night they told us about a "Iron Grid" that had been places across tunnels as the end a little further up....SCORE. The couple were sound and im sure they probably did this stuff when they were young.

    So on we went and before long we came to another smaller culvert. This time we two options. A pipe on the right or a square block on the left. Hmm We chose the pipe, and after a lot of interaction with small brick access chambers the two rejoined and headed forward towards a baptizer.

    Getting under here was fun and it really was a hands and knees job. The tunnel now split directly in two. We made our choice and headed left and came out into a mad cage. So this was what the old man was talking about. It was a large in fall for the stream with a very similar design to that of "The Cage" in Crawley.

    Cool that was a nice bonus for all the effort we put into today we opened the hatch and headed up top. The stream was all but completely dry but you knew that come rain it would a dangerous place to be. We took a few photos before we retired ourselves back to KFC leaving the eastern passages for another night.

    A very chilled out explore and it sure felt good not having to fanny around with manholes and the general pain in the arsery that is London.

    A few pics









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