Cavers with Youth Group Affiliations

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Cavers with Youth Group Affiliations

Postby amaddox » Oct 30, 2008 12:26 pm

I’m curious as to what other cavers are involved with youth organizations? Not necessarily active in the program, just involved.
And those who are, does your role as a caver get employed in the youth organization in any way?
I’ll start it. I’m also an Advisor for a Venturing Crew that’s focused on caving. :cavingrocks: It’s a fairly new Crew. I’d be happy to share stories if anyone is interested.

Allen Maddox
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Re: Cavers with Youth Group Affiliations

Postby Grandpa Caver » Oct 30, 2008 4:23 pm

My grotto has hosted an annual cave trip for a Michigan Boy scout troop for the past 15 years. It occurs to me, we could be seeing the children of scouts on our first trips! It is an event we look forward to each year in part because one of thier leaders is a caterer and always feeds us very, very well. It is the only compensation we have ever accepted from them other than the totally satisfying fun we always have.
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Re: Cavers with Youth Group Affiliations

Postby Mike Hood » Oct 31, 2008 6:20 am

I'm on a troop committee, but am not that active anymore. I used to take the troop on an annual caving weekend, but I haven't done that in a few years (although I get asked about it each year).

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Re: Cavers with Youth Group Affiliations

Postby amaddox » Oct 31, 2008 2:29 pm

Grandpa Caver wrote:My grotto has hosted an annual cave trip for a Michigan Boy scout troop for the past 15 years. It occurs to me, we could be seeing the children of scouts on our first trips! It is an event we look forward to each year in part because one of thier leaders is a caterer and always feeds us very, very well. It is the only compensation we have ever accepted from them other than the totally satisfying fun we always have.

One of the best parts of this type of set up is seeing the same kids over again every year and seeing how they mature. There was one kid, I don't even know his name, when he started he was seriously claustrophobic. Last time I saw him he was the one pushing to organize the annual caving trip. Really cool stuff...

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Re: Cavers with Youth Group Affiliations

Postby amaddox » Oct 31, 2008 2:36 pm

Mike Hood wrote:I'm on a troop committee, but am not that active anymore. I used to take the troop on an annual caving weekend, but I haven't done that in a few years (although I get asked about it each year).

Mike

Once you get them hooked they do keep coming back for more. You might as well give in and just take them caving. :kewl:

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Re: Cavers with Youth Group Affiliations

Postby Geary » Jan 19, 2010 5:02 pm

Thought I would add my two cents.

I started caving in the early 70's with an Explorer Post in Maryland and quickly evolved from there to include rock and ice climbing and some other activities outside the post. I've been caving pretty steady since then.

When my son reached 14, he thought the Boy Scouts were to immature so I encouraged him to join a Venture Crew. The crew we joined was into backpacking and camping but hadn’t really tried caving or climbing. I became an advisor about 7 years ago and since then my daughter also got involved in the program. They are both away in college now but will go on the summer crew trip and other activities when they are home. Our Crew (410) out of San Antonio, Texas informally adopted Deep Cave and Punkin Cave which is owned by the Texas Cave Management Association. These are wonderful caves, both almost two miles long and are actively being mapped. One is a horizontal and vertical maze which does not require rope work. Punkin Cave has two vertical entrances, one a 30 foot rappel and one a 50 foot rappel into a large room. This is a wonderful training cave for vertical work.

Since we started caving, we have caved in West Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, and Georgia along with Texas and Arizona. We have also done a trip to Mexico where we did Bustamante.
Two years ago, we did a summer trip to TAG where we did Neversink, Fountain Pit, South Pittsburgh, Cagles Chasm, Vallahala, and a couple of horizontal caves. We’re planning on going back this summer and doing Fern or Ellisons, Mystey and some others if the WNS issue and permissions don’t get in the way. Our president wants to go to Mexico and do Golandrines but we’ll see. Things are a little unstable in Mexico and I’ve become a little hesitant to travel down there with kids.
Some of our youth have gone on to become quite accomplished cavers in their own right and have served as grotto offices as well as participating in caving expeditions to Mexico. Many of our summer trips are attended by youth that now have to register as adult advisors. They keep coming back.

I have found the BSA to be of limited use for the Crew other than providing insurance. The level of outdoor activities were doing is at a pretty high level for a Venture Crew. We have also had trips to climb 14,000 foot peaks in Colorado and also canyonneering trips at Zion (it’s a blast). Most of the high adventure trips that most crews are doing down here are through guided services such as rafting and rock climbing. I don’t know of any crews that have run trips to TAG like we have but they are probably out there.

Anyway, that is our story.

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Re: Cavers with Youth Group Affiliations

Postby amaddox » Jan 19, 2010 8:02 pm

Geary wrote:Thought I would add my two cents.

I started caving in the early 70's with an Explorer Post in Maryland and quickly evolved from there to include rock and ice climbing and some other activities outside the post. I've been caving pretty steady since then.

When my son reached 14, he thought the Boy Scouts were to immature so I encouraged him to join a Venture Crew. The crew we joined was into backpacking and camping but hadn’t really tried caving or climbing. I became an advisor about 7 years ago and since then my daughter also got involved in the program. They are both away in college now but will go on the summer crew trip and other activities when they are home. Our Crew (410) out of San Antonio, Texas informally adopted Deep Cave and Punkin Cave which is owned by the Texas Cave Management Association. These are wonderful caves, both almost two miles long and are actively being mapped. One is a horizontal and vertical maze which does not require rope work. Punkin Cave has two vertical entrances, one a 30 foot rappel and one a 50 foot rappel into a large room. This is a wonderful training cave for vertical work.

Since we started caving, we have caved in West Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, and Georgia along with Texas and Arizona. We have also done a trip to Mexico where we did Bustamante.
Two years ago, we did a summer trip to TAG where we did Neversink, Fountain Pit, South Pittsburgh, Cagles Chasm, Vallahala, and a couple of horizontal caves. We’re planning on going back this summer and doing Fern or Ellisons, Mystey and some others if the WNS issue and permissions don’t get in the way. Our president wants to go to Mexico and do Golandrines but we’ll see. Things are a little unstable in Mexico and I’ve become a little hesitant to travel down there with kids.
Some of our youth have gone on to become quite accomplished cavers in their own right and have served as grotto offices as well as participating in caving expeditions to Mexico. Many of our summer trips are attended by youth that now have to register as adult advisors. They keep coming back.

I have found the BSA to be of limited use for the Crew other than providing insurance. The level of outdoor activities were doing is at a pretty high level for a Venture Crew. We have also had trips to climb 14,000 foot peaks in Colorado and also canyonneering trips at Zion (it’s a blast). Most of the high adventure trips that most crews are doing down here are through guided services such as rafting and rock climbing. I don’t know of any crews that have run trips to TAG like we have but they are probably out there.

Anyway, that is our story.

Geary Schindel
NSS 15827F

Sounds like you have a great program going there.
Allen Maddox
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Re: Cavers with Youth Group Affiliations

Postby Geary » Jan 19, 2010 8:53 pm

Allen,

Thanks, however, like most BSA groups, our attendance and registration goes in fits and starts. We did have a BSA troop feeding us but they moved the troop to another church which was than put into another District. In addition, over the last three years, we were getting a lot of home school kids which made for an interesting mix. Some of them had some pretty fundementalist views which sometimes created problems with some of the kinds from a more traditional backgrounds. Right now, we only have about 5 active kids and a bunch of kids who have aged out and are now advisors. Have any ideas on recruiting.

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Re: Cavers with Youth Group Affiliations

Postby amaddox » Jan 19, 2010 9:19 pm

Geary wrote:Allen,

................ Right now, we only have about 5 active kids and a bunch of kids who have aged out and are now advisors. Have any ideas on recruiting.

Geary

This seems to be, almost, every Advisor's question. I have a few ideas I haven't tried. We can discuss this off line. Send me an email.

Allen
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