The Next Generation of Cavers

Share ideas and experiences, seek advice for leading youth groups underground. Also visit Youth Group Caving.

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The Next Generation of Cavers

Postby amaddox » Jun 6, 2008 6:59 am

This Section of the discussion board has been way too quite for a long time. Time to see who’s doing what out there.
What success have you had or heard from you grotto members on instilling ethical caving in the next generation through Youth Groups (Scouts, 4H, Church)?
:grin:
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Re: The Next Generation of Cavers

Postby David Grimes » Jun 6, 2008 11:11 pm

It is not really a youth group in the truest sense but I have been doing allot of caving with my nieces and nephews over the last couple of months. They all love it now every week they are begging me to take them out caving.
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Re: The Next Generation of Cavers

Postby amaddox » Jun 7, 2008 7:00 am

dark_storm83 wrote:It is not really a youth group in the truest sense but I have been doing allot of caving with my nieces and nephews over the last couple of months. They all love it now every week they are begging me to take them out caving.


How old are they? What have you done with them? My, now 5 y/o, grandson likes to "read" my NSS News. I think it's time to start him.
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Re: The Next Generation of Cavers

Postby David Grimes » Jun 7, 2008 9:18 pm

They are all between 7 and 11. I have taken them to mostly bunny caves and a couple of slightly harder caves for the older ones. I have a couple videos of them on online cavers page. I like to take them through the passages that have short tight spots and they really enjoy it. The funniest part is they complain less about crawling through puddles than their parents.
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Re: The Next Generation of Cavers

Postby brad81286 » Jun 8, 2008 3:20 pm

Last Spring, are few of my buddies and I to some Scouts from my old Boy Scout troop through Crossroads Cave in Bath Co, VA. Prior to entering we stressed to them the importance of having an idea of where they were in the cave in case we (the trip leaders) became injured. Well as you can guess, they didn't really take that to heart, and we ended up giving them a copy of the map and told them to find our way out. They actually did pretty well. Out of the two separate groups that went, only one of them took a wrong turn from their planned route, and it still led us back to the entrance.
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Re: The Next Generation of Cavers

Postby Teresa » Jul 8, 2008 9:10 am

I spent two weeks with a summer camp caving/canoeing SIG of 11-17 year olds. Part of this involved teaching map reading and orienteering. I had both cave and topo maps along, and they duly looked at them, but it really didn't sink in until we visited a cave on a well-beaten loop trail. This trail has two cave entrances on it. They disregarded the topo and ended up at the wrong cave. I let them do so. We had to get the key to the cave being visited,and they were confused when we got there and no gate existed. I let them figure it out, and they eventually came to the conclusion that they should have looked at the map before running off down the trail.

Once in cave, they requested the cave map, and followed along, esp. after I again let them go down a 'wrong' passage where they had to crawl, avoiding the 30 ft high dry walking passage.
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Re: The Next Generation of Cavers

Postby Scott Parvin » Jul 8, 2008 10:08 am

I've had quite a bit of activity over the last year with Boy Scout groups from the area. I have spoken at several Scout meetings and took one group of fourteen on a five-hour trip in Tumbling Rock Cave in Alabama. They all LOVED it, and we're in the process of setting up another trip.
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Re: The Next Generation of Cavers

Postby cave rat » Jul 9, 2008 10:18 am

I have led a number of BSA caving trips in the last 9 years. I lost count, but it could top around 150 trips.I have had the honor of serving as the Caving Director at Camp Comer BSA Reservation(the site of the 2005 SERA Cave Carnival) in 2006 and at another BSA camp in 2007. I even had repeat troops call me up and ask me to take them caving again. Last trip was a overnighter in Raccoon Mountain Caverns in Chattanooga, TN.

Some of the kids have told me that I give them such a informational education about the cave that they learned more about Earth Science during the 4-6 hour trip than they have learned the entire year they are in school.

If I am going to take a kid caving, then I am going open their mind up to other possiabilities about the cave other than crawling in the mud.

Scott, when you get those trips set up, let me know I will give you a hand on the trips
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Re: The Next Generation of Cavers

Postby incavenow » Sep 16, 2008 10:15 pm

When I first started caving,(back when I was a single feller), I took a lot of my friends kids on thier first cave trips. I also introduced them to rappeling. I bought all the exta gear, except some they insisted on making their parents buy for them. I loved every trip. Instilling confidence in these youngters was such a great reward. I grew up in a church where we had our own version of the Scouts,(I'm a former Scout myself), and I worked with that program. When my son gets just a year or two older I plan on getting him involved with the Boy Scouts and I plan on participating with them and will bring up caving for the group at that time. Lord, let me live that long!
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