Bolting & Rigging in Mines

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Popped into Parc Mine today (No. 2) to have a little look at a pitch Pete and I spotted when scoping out the mine for last years LCMLA L1 training.

There were a few anchors placed at the pitch head, so I was keen to have a little look further. 8 anchors later there’s now quite an exciting 55m pitch with a number of deviations and one re-belay that’ll take you down to Parc 3 with dry feet! It’s not for the feint-hearted, as it needs to be rigged properly, and probably best dropped one at a time (both 2 pitches) as there’s likely to be some loose rock (at one point it passes through some pack wall). Topo available here.

But what got me interested was the state of some of the old anchors. There were 3 in place, 2 of which were dubious! All three were 10mm expansion anchors. The 5 I placed were also 10mm expansion anchors (I prefer 12mm but having trashed 4 drill bits before Christmas, smaller holes seemed the order of the day!) One needed tapping back in, but I wasn’t too bothered about that as it was a deviation.

This is one of the others…


Finding good placements in mines is a real challenge. Seemingly good rock is often part of something that’s been blasted at some point, so blocks are prone to shearing off! Have a closer look…

BoltsParc---2The red line illustrates a crack running around the whole block which the anchor is placed in!! Thankfully it’s part of a 3 bolt belay before the pitch head but it would be nice replace it at some point.

Then there’s rope rub issues. This is an anchor I placed at a re-belay. Finding good rock was tricky so although not the best place to put the anchor, at least it’s in sound rock. But then theres the issue of rope rub…



I frequently hear people say you should never stack karabiners, but sometimes its worth while…


Note access to Parc falls under the new access scheme set up by the CCC, more details here:



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