Aug 122014

I wrote about our June push dive in Elk River a few weeks back. The photo on the top of that post is one of my current favourites. It may not be artistic but it definitely captures the sentiment of the moment. The feeling of surfacing with an empty reel is not to be missed! Photos are easy to sort through and post relatively quickly after the event. Editing the video into sense and finding enough to tell a story takes a little longer. So above is the video from the same trip. Once I was sitting in a comfortable place and had a chance to look through what I’d captured, it became apparent that the video was mostly about moving the packs from the end of the cave pack to the surface.

For logistical reasons I didn’t take any video on the trip in. After the entrance shots the first time the camera came out was at sump 5. I was focussed on gearing up myself, so the first real shots are of Steve and I surfacing after the dive, taken by Sandy. The way home was a different story – with the dive out of the way I could stop to admire the scenery. The waterfalls were particularly photogenic in the high flow conditions.

Elk River waterfalls

As this was a designated push weekend I was happy to leave the big camera behind. I took my little Lumix with me without any external strobes or lights. This limited the photographic options in the waterfalls as the on-camera flash was unworkable and the ambient light from our headtorches pretty hit and miss for stills. With the Scurions on high though, there was more than enough light to get some great action shots as we tried to push the packs full of diving gear up through the flowing water.

I also like the shot of Dave on the balcony at the end of the trip. This was a relatively quick run compared to some others we’ve done; out on the surface just after midnight. But you can see the toll of 14 hours in the cave and he’s not moving as fast as he was in the earlier shots.

Then, of course, there’s the salami. The salami disappeared into the unknown on this trip, 14 months ago. It resurfaced on this trip quite close to sump 1. I’m not sure that eating it was a good idea.

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