Fixed Aids in Caves
A fixed aid can be best described as any item installed or placed in the cave to assist progress, which remains in place for longer than the period of a single visit. Fixed aids in our region include anchors (ranging from original exploration spits to modern resin anchors), ropes, ladders, slings, chains, wires, scaffold, stemples, amongst many others.
The only fixed aids that the Council of Northern Caving Clubs currently supports are stainless steel resin anchors which have been installed by trained installers in accordance with the British Caving Association’s anchor scheme. This includes P-type anchors installed by the CNCC Technical Group and, more recently, IC anchors installed by the IC anchor team.
Providing they are subject to the necessary pre-use inspection, these anchors provide a safe and tested means to belay ropes to descend potholes following the rigging principals of Single Rope Technique (SRT). On this website, you can find out more information about the history, safety and locations of resin anchors.
The CNCC does not support, maintain or endorse use of any other kinds of fixed aids in caves. We strongly recommend that cavers avoid use of fixed aids such as ropes, ladders and instead take your own ropes into the cave, and avoid use of unofficial anchors. There can never be certainty how long a fixed aid has been there, and what damage or wear it may have suffered in that time.
See our ‘Fixed Aid Participation Statement’ for full details.
Types of Approved Anchor
Eco 'P' Anchor: