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Brownley Hill Mine, Brownley Hill Middle Vein with Hannah (01/05/16)

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I was visiting Nenthead with the family for a bit of break away from it all, and there was no way I was going to miss out on a trip underground. So Sunday morning, 10:00 sharp we got together with Mark and drove down to Brownley Hill and parked up opposite Wellgill Shaft, got kitted up and headed for the mine. I had been on a walk the day before with Hannah to show her the mine entrance so she knew what to expect. We did a round of photos outside and then just in the entrance.

Hannah was amazed at the entrance passage, and was commenting about the formations along the way, but the 'deeper' water was not to her liking. It's the issue of getting water in the short wellies and then cold wet feet. I need to sort out some child's waders maybe? If anyone has a better solution let me know. We got to the Engine Shaft junction and had a look around at the dam that was in place diverting all the water down the shaft. From here it was left along Wellgill Cross Vein and to the Brownley Hill Middle Vein Flats. We headed along the level under the flats and then climbed up via a short rise. I was wondering how Hannah was going to take to it, but she did it with not too much fuss. I went up first, Mark set her up to climb and had her back whilst I got her up to the rails and then up the rubble slope. On this first level we had a look around and showed her the open ore chutes back down into the level explaining that you had to be careful around then in case you fell in. It had been a while since Mark or I had been here and we had to have a look around for the way up to the next level. Found quickly enough and we proceeded to do the next climb up which involved a little ledge as well. Same procedure as before and she got up, particularly enjoying going under the large roof flake that had come down. Once under and through the flake we had a little sit down and toffee break.

Replenished with some treats we took to looking around the second level of the flat. I had forgotten how much calcification there is and Hannah said it was like being in Antarctica. We had a look at the foreheads and collected a few bashed in pieces of galena. Then it was time to have lunch by the flake. Tomato soup and Sue's homemade bread on the menu today. After lunch we climbed back down to the first level with no issues and then back into the level. A very smiley face on Hannah. Coming back out on to the main level we saw a tripod and then met two other explorers, had a quick chat and then carried on along to the 'worm hole' connection with Hagg's mine. I described the connection as a 'worm hole' to Hannah as she seems to like doing the crawly bits, but when we got there we could not believe how wide it had gotten. Last time I went down it, it was only a small hole that you had to wriggle down. Someone has been busy, not sure if it is to good effect? We had a look around and I told Hannah she had to climb down the small square hole with the pipe to see what was down there, she wasn't fazed by it and just told me that I was a silly daddy - getting immune to my nonsense. We climbed back out from the connection and headed out of the mine. Another good trip, she is getting the bug.