Slate mine Nuttlar / Sauerland: Being unfaithful to…

– slate mine ‚Christine’… But it will really forgive because we must have a look to other things… And there was an open account with photographing. Last time our camera under water body was flooded.

At the long October weekend in Germany we didn’t pack our cases again. We came back from our trip to the lakes of the region ‚Salzkammergut‘ in Austria the weekend before. So we spent a nice day in slate mine Nuttlar with two good dives.

Therefor we started our day early, at 7 o‘ clock a.m. because the base opens at 9 a.m. And we need two hours to go there. Everything was good until Steffie ordered a milk coffee at a bakery in Bestwig (that is the town where the mine is resided. Nuttlar is a district of Bestwig). The milk had become sour and Steffie was angry. But we had arrived at the base and so we didn’t go back for remonstrating against it. Joyfully she determined that there is the possibility to drink a cup of coffee in the base but with coffe whitener (by the way: that is bader than condensed milk). The morning started lovely *grrr*. Whatever! After check-in we parked our car almost directly in front of the famous yellow container. There weren’t any problems with the parking today because only seven divers were registered (3 from the region ‚Nürnberger Land‘ and another 2 from the region ‚Rheinland‘ in Germany) and 12 divers for trying cave diving. The latter came later and went earlier.

After a short look around we arranged our equipment, carried our stage bottles in the mine and changed our clothes. Wearing our equipment we went to the platform for donning our fins and stage bottles and… flooding a dry glove. Damn! One of Steffie’s gloves wasn’t closed correctly and so cold water got in it. Therefore she went out of water and tied up the dry glove system. The glove wasn’t flooded so much that it wasn’t possible to dive with it. Now the first dive could begin. We dived down the brake incline. Mh – the visibility is a little bit milky and not so clear like else. At the bottom we did a jump in the hallway on the left side. We dived through a frame and across a rusty toilet and followed the hallway in a big mine dump. Behind the frame the visibility became clear. We inspected the mine dump with our lamps and turned around because it was a blind end.

Back at the bottom of the brake incline we followed the mainline until the first T. Here we decided for the left possibility. Past old pipes, leaded by high slate walls and marveling relicts from building times we followed the line past the overhead loader until its end. In this part you can appear, but not go out. After a short stop over there we turned around. Two divers crossed our way and because of the lamps and the light milky visibility there was an interesting atmosphere (the visibility didn’t become clear in this part). At the overhead loader we still had a short photo session, picked up our cookies at the T and dived back to the entrance/exit. Steffie’s damp hand was freezed after the dive. Now we marched up the dry part of the brake incline and enjoyed directly the warm late summer weather outside. After 70 minutes in 7 degrees cold water Steffie was perished despite heating.

After a brake with drinking coffee an eating something we changed our double 12 bottles. After we started our second dive. Certainly we dived down the brake incline and then right until the T. But now we followed the right line. Leaded by slate walls again and passing relicts the hallway ended in a mine dump. It was a blind end again. So we dived back again. But then we turned left in another hallway. To follow this we had to install a reel at the mainline. We were almost surprised that it ends in a mine dump and is a blind end. But now our proper misery of this day came (and that showed that this day wasn’t our day): the reel let overtake very heavily. Bit by bit Peter collected the 50 m line with a lot of effort and exertion. After the action the dive ended. We slackened the reel from the mainline, picked up our cookies and appeared via brake incline.

Despite the adverse circumstances we had two nice dives. The light miky visibility is because of – a diveguide of the mine told us – the rainy weather during the last weeks. The seep pushed sediment through the rocks. But it wasn’t bad visibility. The water wasn’t only been so clear. That are natural circumstances we can’t affect.

At home we disassembled the reel and checked it. We wanted to save money. Now we will spend more and buy a special one.
Max. dive time: 73 min., water: 7,5° C, max. depth: 14 m, visibility: as far as light allows, but not so clear.


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