“We are stuck” are the words that nobody on a scientific drilling expedition ever wants to hear but this is what happened to us today as we were trying to reenter our hole. It seems that the unstable sands collapsed in and trapped our pipe on the way back to the bottom of the hole.  After a good deal of wriggling around and trying to free the pipe in the normal way and having no joy we took the regrettable decision that we would have to sever the pipe and begin our attempts to drill deep at this location again. To do this we have to lower explosives in order to sever the pipe above the stuck area, which is a last resort as you can imagine. Fortunately our logging engineer is rather better with handling explosives than our cartoon friend Wiley Coyote. Of course this is a disappointment but it is certainly not unheard of and happened on my last expedition which finished well despite this temporary setback, so we are remaining positive.

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