Helmetless Caving Poll

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Helmet Habits

I would NEVER consider caving without a helmet under any circumstances
53
40%
I wear a helmet in the grocery
5
4%
I would NEVER allow Jonah to cave with me since he shows such disregard for safety
8
6%
I like to have my helmet, but would go caving without it if the opportunity arose
6
5%
I can imagine caving situations that shouldn't require the use of a helmet
40
30%
Jonah has big ears
5
4%
I wear my helmet mostly because it's expected and would prefer to go without
2
2%
I don't regularly wear a helmet
1
1%
If Marion Smith wore a helmet made with kielbasa, I would too.
13
10%
 
Total votes : 133

Re: Helmetless Caving Poll

Postby Jeff Bartlett » Mar 28, 2013 6:35 pm

Anonymous_Coward wrote:Dude, just DROP it. You are never going to win over experienced cavers to your side on this one. We all wear helmets. Get over it.

Without a helmet, this thread will drop itself the first time anything goes wrong on any of his trips, ever.
I'm just glad he's not in TAG so that my friends won't have to be the ones to go get him.
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Re: Helmetless Caving Poll

Postby GroundquestMSA » Mar 28, 2013 9:07 pm

Anonymous_Coward wrote:We all wear helmets. Get over it.


I'm know you do. So do I. Usually. I've never tried to encourage anyone not to. I've tried to encourage people to quit oversimplifying.

Anonymous_Coward wrote:But you are beating a grease spot on the ground where the horse long ago decomposed.

I know I am. I'm a little irritated at myself for keeping up these arguments every time someone makes a new post on this thread.

Anonymous_Coward wrote:I have caved with Dave Bunnell on several occasions. I can assure you that he wears a helmet.

I'm sure he does. Just not in his profile photo. If that photo was of a nobody from nowhere, like me, people would gripe about it.

Jeff Bartlett wrote:I'm just glad he's not in TAG so that my friends won't have to be the ones to go get him.

I cave near your hometown whenever I have the time and money. With my helmet. My father and grandfather introduced me to caving there and they spent many years caving there (without helmets...don't blame them, they didn't know that helmets were standard caving equipment). I'm curious, will you or your friends be willing to rescue me if I get hurt while wearing my helmet? Or will I still be a jackass who deserves to lie there and rot?
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Re: Helmetless Caving Poll

Postby Jeff Bartlett » Mar 28, 2013 10:00 pm

GroundquestMSA wrote:I'm curious, will you or your friends be willing to rescue me if I get hurt while wearing my helmet? Or will I still be a jackass who deserves to lie there and rot?

Yep. What a stupid question. What on earth is wrong with you?
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Re: Helmetless Caving Poll

Postby Extremeophile » Mar 28, 2013 11:20 pm

Yes, we all occasionally take our helmets off to change batteries or squeeze through a tight spot. That's not the same as caving without a helmet.
I also almost always unzip my pants to take a leak, but that's different than caving with my wang out. Always wear a helmet ... and always wear pants. :banana:
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Re: Helmetless Caving Poll

Postby NZcaver » Mar 29, 2013 5:09 am

GroundquestMSA wrote:I've tried to encourage people to quit oversimplifying.

Yes, because we all know that oversimplification is the mortal enemy of the long and prosperous Cavechat argument discussion.
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Re: Helmetless Caving Poll

Postby WVCaver2011 » Mar 29, 2013 8:16 am

Nah bra you dont get it. I cave with that many dollars of gear because I like to see well and carry at least one extra source of light (because if one goes out you're screwed if you dont have another or unless you can fix the light in complete darkness), I like to protect my head (in the caves I visit there are boulders to climb across and places where one can easily slip,trip,or fall if not careful and injure their head permanently), and I like to get to the car, take off my coveralls (that are protecting my clothes underneath from being permanently stained with cave mud), and hop on in the car without wasting anymore time.

Ha, I wore Levi's... I ripped the ass right out of a pair once. It got caught on a projection while sliding down a rock. Maybe a pair of horses couldnt rip them apart but one human ripped the ass right out of them. Needless to say, that was an interesting trip out of the cave.

Are jeans always the best choice? No. Are jeans always a bad choice? No. Are you automatically safer, better, or happier than a poor man because you're draped in hundreds of dollars of equipment? No.


I dont every recall mentioning that wearing hundreds of dollars worth of equipment was the best choice... Just saying that's the best choice for me...

Is a man in this cave over here with a helmet automatically safer than a man over there in that cave with no helmet? Nope, Helmet Man may be a clumsy, careless ignoramus in a dangerous cave. Helmetless Boy may be a careful, aware caver in a cave that he knows poses little risk.


I use to think the same thing...One bump to the head is all it took to think otherwise. I have hit my head on numerous occasions with my helmet on. One of which would have most likely been fatal. I slipped on a rock and fell about 5 feet. In the process of falling foward my head bounced off of a projection on the wall (talk about spine compression). Had I not been wearing that helmet, I may not be here typing this message to you.

In conclusion, I feel each person has there entitled opinion on the helmet issue provided their cave conditions, etc. I dont hold it against you at all. That being said, I would recommend that you wear a helmet because there's always the risk of hitting your head. That's your decision and the price you put on your head.
There's nothing that makes me more excited than finding a place underground that no one has ever seen or been in!

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Re: Helmetless Caving Poll

Postby Chads93GT » Mar 29, 2013 8:26 am

GroundquestMSA wrote:I'm curious, will you or your friends be willing to rescue me if I get hurt while wearing my helmet? Or will I still be a jackass who deserves to lie there and rot?


That is a pretty ridiculously stupid remark to make to someone who just put his life on the line to haul someone out of a cave over the weekend who had fell down a 40' pit.
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Re: Helmetless Caving Poll

Postby driggs » Mar 29, 2013 9:32 am

Extremeophile wrote:I also almost always unzip my pants to take a leak, but that's different than caving with my wang out. Always wear a helmet ... and always wear pants. :banana:


Wouldn't the world be a better place if we could all just express our opinions equally? Here in West Pensyltucky, I explore caves where there's no danger of abrading my schlong on popcorn. I've been caving commando now for several months, and am qualified to offer safety advice based on this extensive experience. Not once have I had my wenis whacked in cave, therefore it's perfectly appropriate to encourage those who don't know any better to bellycrawl with bare bottoms.

Sure, you fancy rich boys can have your nylon cave suits, I'm happy with my birthday suit, thanks. I dug up some old issues of National Geographic, and the aborigines, neanderthals, and native americans are all caving with their "short cowstails" blowing in the wind. And, I'll have you know that I was lurking around the sauna at OTR, and have compiled a long list of Big Name Cavers that you can add to your no-pants blacklist.

:woohoo:
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Re: Helmetless Caving Poll

Postby WVCaver2011 » Mar 29, 2013 2:39 pm

driggs wrote:
Extremeophile wrote:I also almost always unzip my pants to take a leak, but that's different than caving with my wang out. Always wear a helmet ... and always wear pants. :banana:


Wouldn't the world be a better place if we could all just express our opinions equally? Here in West Pensyltucky, I explore caves where there's no danger of abrading my schlong on popcorn. I've been caving commando now for several months, and am qualified to offer safety advice based on this extensive experience. Not once have I had my wenis whacked in cave, therefore it's perfectly appropriate to encourage those who don't know any better to bellycrawl with bare bottoms.

Sure, you fancy rich boys can have your nylon cave suits, I'm happy with my birthday suit, thanks. I dug up some old issues of National Geographic, and the aborigines, neanderthals, and native americans are all caving with their "short cowstails" blowing in the wind. And, I'll have you know that I was lurking around the sauna at OTR, and have compiled a long list of Big Name Cavers that you can add to your no-pants blacklist.

:woohoo:


:rofl:
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Re: Helmetless Caving Poll

Postby GroundquestMSA » Mar 29, 2013 4:20 pm

Jeff Bartlett wrote:
GroundquestMSA wrote:I'm curious, will you or your friends be willing to rescue me if I get hurt while wearing my helmet? Or will I still be a jackass who deserves to lie there and rot?

Yep. What a stupid question. What on earth is wrong with you?


My heart hurts.


driggs wrote:
Extremeophile wrote:I also almost always unzip my pants to take a leak, but that's different than caving with my wang out. Always wear a helmet ... and always wear pants. :banana:


Wouldn't the world be a better place if we could all just express our opinions equally? Here in West Pensyltucky, I explore caves where there's no danger of abrading my schlong on popcorn. I've been caving commando now for several months, and am qualified to offer safety advice based on this extensive experience. Not once have I had my wenis whacked in cave, therefore it's perfectly appropriate to encourage those who don't know any better to bellycrawl with bare bottoms.

Sure, you fancy rich boys can have your nylon cave suits, I'm happy with my birthday suit, thanks. I dug up some old issues of National Geographic, and the aborigines, neanderthals, and native americans are all caving with their "short cowstails" blowing in the wind. And, I'll have you know that I was lurking around the sauna at OTR, and have compiled a long list of Big Name Cavers that you can add to your no-pants blacklist.

:woohoo:


Well done :goodjob: That's my style of argument.

WVCaver - I agree with everything in your last post.
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Re: Helmetless Caving Poll

Postby GroundquestMSA » Mar 29, 2013 4:55 pm

I feel like I need to stop talking about this. All day at work I have felt bad about the tone of these most recent comments. I'll make this my last post on the subject, and clarify and restate a few things that I feel anyone reading this whole crazy mess should remember. If anyone needs to set me straight or make more jokes that's ok. If anyone really feels like they need to communicate with me on any of these issues, send me a pm or an e-mail, or give me a phone call.

I take my own safety seriously. I value my head. I don't want to die. I don't want anyone to stop wearing a helmet, and I don't want to make anyone uncomfortable by not wearing mine. I have no experience to speak of, and no qualifications whatsoever to give safety advice. I have a lot of respect for the skill, the experience, and the opinions of those who have commented on this topic. I have even more respect for the people who volunteer to rescue fellow cavers. I hope never to need your services, but I hope that if I do, you won't say, "The little squirt had it coming." One of my primary reasons for starting this poll was to get a feeling for how the majority thinks on this issue, because: I have several photos of myself caving with no helmet. I have been considering using these in a publication describing the caves of my county. I felt a little worried that some people would be bothered, and it felt a little untrue for me to return to these little caves to pose for new pictures. I wondered if people would be able or willing to put those photos into context and realize that nothing horribly irresponsible was being portrayed. I suppose I got an answer of sorts from this poll. The reason I've continued to battle through all of these sides of the issue is because I felt misinterpreted and misunderstood, and that doesn't feel good. Most of us will never cross paths, but if we do, don't assume I'm a fool based on this thread. Maybe it's too late.

Bartlett - My apologies.
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Re: Helmetless Caving Poll

Postby Chads93GT » Mar 29, 2013 10:24 pm

Takes a big man to apologize. Kudos. That being said, I dont know any caver that has never been in a cave without a helmet. As most have said, pushing tight leads, resting for lunch, changing batteries, it happens. What most frown upon is finding a hole in the ground and jumping into it without a helmet. I am sure everyone has dont it, we all have, its just not the smart thing to do. One time I was in a horrible crawl cave and i dislodged a piece of breakdown from the ceiling that weighed over 15 pounds. It smashed my hand and I had to exit the cave immediately to drill a hole in my fingernail or pass out from the throbbing pain. If that had been my head, and I had no helmet, im sure my brains would have painted the walls. You never know when something might happen. Just cave smart. You seem like a very intelligent man(or woman?) lol and I am sure you get it. NOt wearing a helmet is taboo, as is touching formations with your bare hand. Im sure we have all done that too, even if by accident.
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Re: Helmetless Caving Poll

Postby Anonymous_Coward » Apr 2, 2013 3:31 pm

GroundquestMSA wrote:I take my own safety seriously. I value my head. I don't want to die. I don't want anyone to stop wearing a helmet, and I don't want to make anyone uncomfortable by not wearing mine.


Good to hear. Nobody here thinks you are a fool. People just want you to wear a helmet so you won't get hurt. That is all.

GroundquestMSA wrote: I have been considering using these in a publication describing the caves of my county.

I would say go ahead. Just include some kind of explanation so that people don't think that it is usual for cavers to go without helmets. It is very common for cavers to take their helmet off occasionally during cave trips. You saw what happened when Amy posted that photo of her touching a formation. You don't want that to happen to you.

GroundquestMSA wrote:Bartlett - My apologies.

Here is another rule of caving for you to learn. NEVER apologize to Bartlett. Whatever it was, he had it coming.
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Re: Helmetless Caving Poll

Postby Rebecca » Aug 12, 2013 10:31 am

I know people who fall in all areas of the helmet spectrum. My sister treats her hard hat like it's welded to her head. It never comes off. EVER. Our fearless leader never wears one. He says that his problem with helmets is they don't have hair on them. When he feels his hair brush the ceiling, he knows to duck. With a helmet, he whaps his head constantly. (I will say that he moves fairly slowly, and isn't likely to go tearing headlong into a rock formation like some other people I cave with...)
I personally usually wear a hardhat but I do remove it from time to time during crawls. That's when I enter the "helmet does more harm than good" camp. It gets stuck and impedes my vision. I also ditch it in one small (maybe 20' long) cave we do--we (seriously) recommend NOT wearing a hardhat. This is because the cave has an extremely high ceiling (20' plus) AND the entrance is under a waterfall. If the water's high, you have your face in the water going in. If you have a helmet strapped to you head and you get it stuck...well, you see where this is going. Worse than if you didn't wear it. HOWEVER, and this is important, when I remove my hardhat I ALWAYS keep my head down and my shoulders up. That way if something gets whapped, it's my shoulders. There's also a few "now duck under this ledge that has water running under it" places where I push my helmet through to a person on the other side. In those times, the policy is the person on the other side puts their hand on the head of the person coming under. (We do that for the waterfall entrance too.) That way heads are still protected (if the person's head is really close to the ceiling, the person with the hand on it pushes down lightly in warning).
Overall, I fall in the "There's situations when you're better off without one, but most of the time, wear a helmet."
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