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  • Christine Grosart

After the showcave, we will go cave diving...

The campsite is beginning to wind down after the holiday season, but that didn't stop them having their traditional party games in the pool, which are always a great spectator sport!

The idea was to balance on a giant inflatable ring and get pulled towards your opponent, who will try to bash you off your perch with a long pink sausage!

Rich was quite keen to revisit this short, but beautiful cave and we fancied doing our own film this time, with the objective to have shots of the diver swimming towards the camera and a good shot of the entrance rift.

So, I sent an email to Mehdi, the local diver who has access to the source and he duly arranged a dive for us.

Mehdi is a really nice guy and amused us with tales of his adventures the night before his wedding, which involved diving the Esperelle and then rock climbing in the Dourbie gorge, finishing up at about 2am!

We weren’t meeting him until 4pm though, so we looked for something else to do during the day and came across Dargilan show caves. Mum had been rattling on about this for years, so I figured it would be worth a visit, especially as it was only half an hour from the Esperelle.

Dargilan didn’t disappoint and we had ample opportunity to take photos.

After a spot of lunch overlooking the very impressive valley, we set off to the Esperelle to meet Mehdi.

The Esperelle is stunning and although only just over 300m long, drops off to the terminus at -60m. We took trimix and set off, leap frogging to get some lovely video shots and then floated down the beautiful, sculptured shaft at the end of the cave.

We returned with a little decompression and Mehdi kept his customary bottle of white wine in the sump, cooling for us.

A welcome cold beer after diving!


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