Caving Guru wrote:zschudrowitz: "Do any of your kids have an exploration story? cave science project? vertical training advice? I hope this brainchild works, so pester your kids for some cool presentation ideas and are willing writers."
I am 19, am a willing writer, have many cave exploration stories, and have much vertical training advice but I have never done a cave science project. I have so far been to the West Virginia 2012 NSS Convention at the age of 17, the Pennsylvania 2013 NSS Convention at the age of 18, and the Alabama 2014 NSS Convention at the age of 19. I would love to give a presentation to JSS kids at the Missouri 2015 NSS Convention and many more to come if I was allowed the opportunity to.
I became in love with caving since the moment I first went caving at the age of 12. My passion for caving in no way has come from my parents. If anything, I have gotten my parents into caving. I keep an active log of all my cave trips so I am therefore able to tell you that I have so far done 151 cave trips and 32 vertical cave trips in 11 US states and 1 Canadian Province (QC, NH, CT, PA, MD, WV, VA, NC, TN, GA, AL, & CA). I attempted to go caving when I was in Arizona, Louisiana, and Mississippi but I was unsuccessful in my attempts to go caving in these 3 states. I am most often criticized when I say my caving experience because people think that I am bragging which is not the case. I hope that I am not criticized by any of you for saying my caving experience.
buddyh wrote:A few comments and more.
Not put off at all, encouraged. I've already been thinking of the many points you raise. As stated earlier I don't want to tax the JSS but leverage it. I am working on gathering facts, resources and estimates. Of course I would be helping at convention.
For those that don't know me, I have been Scouter for about 25 years now. I live in Maryland north of Baltimore. I joined the NSS upon taking my first OCR or COR or what ever they were calling the weekend intro to cave rescue close to 16 years ago. I had started to lead trips into a couple of caves as part of an Adult Education Center program at the local high school. The center was first run by the local Board of Education and was later run by the community college group of the county. I incorporated to protect my family and our assets. After a few years the student pool dried up but I found there were many troops in my district that wanted to go caving. I do charge a minimal fee to cover some of the insurance and equipment costs. There is no financial profit in this but there are huge rewards, and if you have ever lead a youth group caving then you know what they are. I have completed level two, Team Leader, NCRC training and hoe to go level three in a few years, scouting permitting. When it comes to caving, I instruct to all the proper policies, procedures, conservation and safety the NSS and BSA and I require. My goal is a safe trip that sets an example so high, the participants would demand the same of other adventures and groups.
I tell my students that I am a Scouter first and a caver second. That is the order they occurred and the order they are performed. I know some out side of Scouting do not understand all the rules such as two deep leadership and the buddy system but I stand by them. Of course I also say that one needs to know the rules well so that they can be broken properly. Then again when other groups adopt the policies of the BSA as their standard, you know then that they have merit. The Royal Rangers are a case in point.
My goal with this project is to increase the participation and the membership of the NSS and Scouting all while instilling a sense of ownership, stewardship and accomplishment in the next generation to carry the torch. If it can serve as a model and test bed even better.
To get there it will take till 2016. I see six months of planning and then a year to execute the plan, ending with the convention.
I am working on cost estimates and hope to have something early September. I will submit a rough outline of the trip itinerary then also. After that we can see if the various sections like the Vertical Workshop group can support us. I want to have everything ready and be signing up participants by the time convention 2014 starts.
I do have a website if you want to visit it. I need to work on it a little as some state regulations have changed.
http://www.hiventures.com. If you go to Bud's Own Adventures, there are three rescue training adventures to see. One has my wife manning the comm line at the mouth of the cave.
And yes, some parts of the convention are not for youth. What do they say? What happens in Ely stays in Ely. The Howdy Party, Wednesday party and Banquet are tame enough and managed. These will be High School aged youth. As stated, they will like tend to self segregate most of the time.
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