BSA and Vertical Caving

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Re: BSA and Vertical Caving

Postby Grandpa Caver » Nov 16, 2012 7:37 pm

amaddox wrote:That would work..


Thanks Allen. Can you send us a link for more info or the online training. Personally, I've found navigating the BSA web site to be a little difficult.
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Re: BSA and Vertical Caving

Postby amaddox » Nov 16, 2012 8:47 pm

I'll get you something before the end of the weekend.
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Youth Protection Training Re: BSA and Vertical Caving

Postby amaddox » Nov 18, 2012 3:05 pm

I highly suggest you use internet explorer to do this. It works and someime Crome and Fire Fox does not.

You can go onto the BSA web site at http://www.scouting.org. On the top right there is a tab-link for MyScouting. Click on that.
You will have to create an acount before you can sign in. You don't have to be a member of BSA to create an acount. Once you sign in you will see a collumn on the left. Click on eLearning.
Scroll down and you'll see some tabs. Gerneral should be the defalt. On that tab the first item is Youth ProtectionTraining. Click on Take the Course.

This should take about 20 minutes.
Under supplimental training is a link to take Climb On Safely. That's about 20 minutes, too. Just a good idea to take that too so you understand more of the BSA Unit Climbing rules.

If you have any other questions, please feel free to let me know. You can also email me at trailsitter@yahoo.com.
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Re: BSA and Vertical Caving

Postby caveflower » Nov 18, 2012 4:39 pm

Awesome Allen! Thanks That's a big help.
Caving is fun but people are always more important.
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Re: BSA and Vertical Caving

Postby amaddox » Nov 18, 2012 5:32 pm

Do me a favor. When you have your trip, take a lot of pictures, post them and write and post a trip report. I'd like to know how it all turns out.
Thanks for all you do for the kids,
Allen
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Re: BSA and Vertical Caving

Postby Grandpa Caver » Nov 18, 2012 8:15 pm

Ditto what Brenda said! I've no doubt this should help not only with our current venture crew problem but all future scout trips as well. We have another troop doing an annual trip with us and there is usually a "pop-up" trip or two each year.
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Re: BSA and Vertical Caving

Postby amaddox » Nov 18, 2012 9:53 pm

I hope to see some pictures and trip reports from you too.

Thanks for all you do for them,
Allen
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Re: BSA and Vertical Caving

Postby buddyh » Feb 13, 2013 10:14 pm

Hi all,

I try to keep up with all the latest regs when it comes to adventures with Scouts and Venture crews. They now want two "qualified instructors" for up to 10 and then one for every 10 additional participants.

Climb on Safely. http://www.scouting.org/scoutsource/boyscouts/resources/climbonsafely.aspx
The instructor and
"One additional adult who is at least 18 years of age must also accompany the unit. Units with more than 10 youths in the same climbing/rappelling session must have an additional adult leader at least 18 years of age for each 10 additional youth participants."

The requirements are a little free when defining a Qualified instructor.
They offer suggestions of where to get qualified or find qualified instructors.
"Examples of sources of qualified climbing and rappelling instructors include, but are not limited to, the following:

BSA climbing directors or instructors
National Outdoor Leadership School
Wilderness Education Association
American Mountain Guides Association
The Mountaineers
Recreational Equipment Inc.
Eastern Mountain Sports
University or college climbing/rappelling instructors or students
Project Adventure instructors
National Speleological Society chapters

Leaders and instructors should also consult current literature on climbing and rappelling for additional guidance. Topping Out: A BSA Climbing/Rappelling Manual, No. 3207A, is the most authoritative guide currently available from the Boy Scouts of America. "

The list above in not an all inclusive list and does not require that the instructor be trained by one of them. The only time a BSA Certified Climbing Instructor is required is when they are in a Camp Program.


A word in Topping Out. It is written for a Camp Program, not for the adventures we typically provide. A lot of good information in it but we are not building a tower for the activities.

Here is the url for the caving guidelines: [url]] http://www.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/19-102B.pdf[/url]
"A. All caving, other than simple novice activities,
should be limited to adults and young people
14 and older—members of Venturing crews
or Learning for Life Explorer posts, and older
Scouts in troops and teams. “Simple novice
activities” means commercially operated
cave excursions."

Now I have hashed this point out in other threads but because I operate under an S corp and charge to help cover expenses, I take the younger scouts into "simple" walking and crawling caves. I loose money every year but at least I can recoup some of the costs. I get a lot of enjoyment and fun from introducing youth and adults to caving. If i did not, I would have stopped years ago.


"• The leaders must have adequate first-aid
training and ability, and a comprehensive
knowledge of the practices to follow in the
event of an accident. Wilderness First Aid
training is recommended for at least one
member of the group."

Now here unlike with a Philmont trip, certification is not a prerequisite.

Here is big one for this topic.
"C. Except for groups composed entirely of
experienced cavers, the cave to be visited
must not require the use of ropes, cables,
ladders, or other climbing devices. The safe
use of these aids requires extensive training
and practice under controlled conditions
above ground, never in a cave."

My take on this is that some level of proficiency in rope work is required. You may use them if you train how to use correctly. I will usually have a topside class or Rappelling and Climbing event prior to going under ground. They must be able to tie in and know the signals to communicate between belayer and rappeller or climber. Here is a strange twist. Racks are only permitted when caving or training for caving. At least they go that correct. Remember you can setup a rope and ladder in a tree for practice and training. Just be sure to set up a belay when using a cable ladder.
The Caveat to all this is that you must be willing to address the problems that may arise, exhaustion and injury. How do you haul them up when they can't complete the task without assistance. I'm not thinking of full scale rescue with litters and OSS or KEDs.




In the program guide found at http://www.scouting.org/filestore/outdoor%20program/pdf/430-056.pdf
this little tid bit is found.
"CC -31: All participants are top-roped when climbing. When transferring from one belay system to
another, a consistent process is used to ensure that the new belay attachment is secure before
the old system is disconnected. All rappelling participants are belayed. The following belay methods
are allowed:
• Single-line rappel with an independent belay line
• Double-line rappel with an independent belay line
• Single-line rappel with a fireman’s belay
• Double-line rappel with a fireman’s belay
Belay system rigging must allow rappelling participants to be quickly and safely lowered if the rappel
device becomes jammed (e.g., releasable rappel)."

Take note that a single line rappel is now allowed where as previously this was not.

In summary, yes Vertical trips may be done but prior training of the participants in the basics should be done above ground. Vertical trips should not be a first trip. Keep up on the recent changes to the rule as some have been updated this year. And remember to show them the most correct way. My goals on every adventure are four fold, safety, safety, fun and then learn something.

Enlighten me if you think I am wrong. I welcome all comments.

BuddyH
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Re: BSA and Vertical Caving

Postby amaddox » Feb 14, 2013 11:22 am

Buddy,
That's the way I read it too. I like the way you solved the challenge. It's different than my solutions which goes to show that there is more than one way to comply with the rules.
It all comes down to using common sense. Practice above ground and know the limits of your group before you go underground.
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Re: BSA and Vertical Caving

Postby Paul Hammond » Sep 9, 2013 12:54 am

I know this is a little late but...

My Venture Crew has an advantage over most units here in San Diego. I am an avid caver as well as a National Camp School certified Climbing Director (as well as a COPE Director), and my wife holds a Level II climbing instructor card (issued by someone other than myself). We also have 2 additional associate advisers that have a Level 1 Climbing card. We regularly drop into talus caves and lava tubes out here - but we require all those going on the vertical trips to be able to rope walk and/or frog up a rope twice the length of our deepest pit at one of the two meetings prior to the trip. No Climb - No Go. And, it doesn't matter if you were on the same trip a year ago. We limit our group size to 12 - (8 youth, 2 adults, and 2 instructors.)

I would agree with everyone's taking the Climb On Safely class as well as both the Boy Scout Youth Protection Training and the Ventureing Youth Protection Training. There are some specific variances anytime you have the young ladies along. But, just taking the Climb on Safely training does not make a person a Qualified Instructor as mentioned in Point 2.

The way our council Climbing Committee has interpreted the number to participants to instructor ratio is on the number of participants who are actively climbing or rappelling. Everyone else is a spectator. So if we have 2 ropes set up, we have 2 climbers, plus 2 belayers which equals 4 participants. The fact that there are 40 kids and an additional 15 adults on the outing doesn't matter - unless of course they are in the fall zone at the base of the climb. I have yet to be on a trip where we have more than 10 participants at a time - unless it is at the climbing gym - and then, the gym's rules apply.

As always, your belay anchors may differ...
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