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Latest Eco-anchor Rigging Information & Notes

DCA has arranged for resin-mounted Eco-anchors (P-hangers) to be installed in certain caves and mines in the Peak District.

These have been placed by cavers trained to the NCA standard for installing these anchors so they should give long service. However, you are warned that, before you use it, you should always check every hanger. The physical test should be a twisting motion of the hanger using the fingers, while observing any movement. Slight flexing or rotational movement (+ / - 1mm) of the hanger may be noticed, this is acceptable.

The following points should be checked:

  • Looseness or fracture of the rock in which the anchor is placed.
  • Grooves or abrasion inside the curvature of the anchor (i.e. the inside contact area of the anchor).
  • Obvious damage to the anchor or placement from rock fall.
  • Excessive rotation of the resin within the drilled hole.
  • Rotation of the anchor within the resin.
  • Fracturing of the rock within 20cm of the anchor placement.
  • Egress of the anchor from the resin or resin from the drilled hole

Should any defects be noticed you should contact DCA as soon as possible.

The following information is required when reporting suspected defective hangers:

a. Name of cave/mine.
b. Route on which the defective hanger is.
c. Traverse or pitch no.
d. Hanger number, counting from the start of that group of hangers.

When Eco-anchors are used for ladder and line techniques it is essential that pulleys are used; the rope must not be pulled, when loaded, through the hanger.

On certain routes where hangers are regularly used with a doubled lifeline to safeguard a climb down, a steel maillon has been permanently attached to the hanger. (Giants Hole: the climb down from the Upper Series to the Crabwalk and the Wet Inlets.) To avoid undue wear on the hanger as the rope is pulled down after the last climber, please thread the rope through the maillon, not through the hanger itself. It is much easier to replace a worn maillon than to remove and replace a worn hanger!

Currently DCA has installed permanent Eco-anchors in 25 sites:

  • Carleswark Cavern
  • Devonshire Mine
  • Eldon Hole
  • Garden Path
  • Giants Hole
  • Hillocks Mine
  • James Hall Over Engine Mine
  • Jugholes Lower Series
  • Knotlow Mine
  • Lathkill Head Upper Entrance
  • Layby Pot
  • Long Rake Mine (Bradwell Moor)
  • Maskhill Mine
  • Merlins Mine
  • Nettle Pot
  • Nickergrove Mine
  • Odin Mine
  • Old Tor Mine
  • Oxlow Cavern
  • P 8
  • Peak/Speedwell (Block Hall)
  • Robins Shaft Mine
  • Rowter Hole
  • Suicide Cave
  • Whalf Mine

Details of the siting of the Eco-anchors may be found in the Rigging Guides or Rigging cards published by Crewe C. P. C.

DCA has also installed a "pull thro" system using Eco-anchors on certain climbs up. (These allow cavers to rig their own SRT rope for the climb and then retrieve it afterwards.) The sites rigged in this way are:

  • Nettle Pot - the climb up to the Far Flats
  • Oxlow Cavern - the climb up from West Chamber to Pilgrim's Way


DCA does NOT install permanent rope handlines or fixed ropes for SRT in caves or mines in the region. Any such ropes in place, even if they are attached to DCA-installed Eco-anchors, have not been placed by DCA and are not subject to inspection by DCA.

Page Last Updated 25th May 2009

© Derbyshire Caving Association