New user Dan Howitt, "Caving in the US compared to Europe"

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New user Dan Howitt, "Caving in the US compared to Europe"

Postby danhowitt » Jan 3, 2018 5:44 am

Sorry I changed the topic to this

Regarding Alaska. Is there caving there or does the cold ground temperature limit it?

Ice caving? Is there such a thing? Exploring ice caves?
Last edited by danhowitt on Jan 16, 2018 7:34 am, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: New user Dan Howitt, "Caving in the US compared to Europ

Postby trogman » Jan 9, 2018 5:05 am

Having never caved in Europe, I am probably not really qualified to answer your question. I would say that our caving methodology in the U.S. is not "superior," but simply different. We do things differently for various reasons, some of them having to do with culture, some having to do with environment, etc. The primary difference I am aware of is in vertical caving, where we use 11 mm rope and pad lips, but Europeans generally use smaller ropes and set re-belays at rub points. Also, because of this, most Europeans use the Frog climbing system, vs the ropewalker that is more popular here in the U.S.

Trogman :helmet:
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Re: New user Dan Howitt, "Caving in the US compared to Europ

Postby CaverScott » Jan 9, 2018 9:28 am

See above, another thing I noticed on the ONE caving trip I did while on vacation is the Europeans use Rigging Cards. here is an example of one.

Image

https://cncc.org.uk/caving/topos/files/ ... Tunnel.jpg
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Re: New user Dan Howitt, "Caving in the US compared to Europ

Postby l lambert » Jan 9, 2018 4:02 pm

"Is the US much superior in many ways"

The short answer is no.
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Re: New user Dan Howitt, "Caving in the US compared to Europ

Postby danhowitt » Jan 10, 2018 5:21 am

What are the underground systems of tunnels below Paris or somewhere? Catecombs? Does anyone have experience there or maybe caving isn't possible there?
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Re: New user Dan Howitt, "Caving in the US compared to Europ

Postby ohiocaver » Jan 10, 2018 5:52 pm

Different is the operative word.
Good points made on gear - frog vs. ropewalker vs. other. My experience is that the European caving clubs tend to be more hierarchical - where most (but not all) US clubs are less regimented and the caving less graded. They are very adamant about using "their" systems vs. others.
It is MUCH easier to find information on caves in Europe (or anywhere else in the world). Simply ping http://www.grottocenter.org and you can find the locations of caves in just about any country EXCEPT the United States. In the US, there is a major stigma against even revealing to the un-anointed that caves exist. On the other hand, we want people to protect caves and waterways.
Both European and American cavers LOVE their sport and both would do anything for another caver or to better caves and caving. :bat sticker:
[url=http://postimg.org/image/lex35gcbv/][img]http://s9.postimg.org/lex35gcbv/curt_Bryants_Cave_Indiana.jpg[/img][/url]
[url=http://postimg.org/image/eta4ctvar/][img]http://s21.postimg.org/eta4ctvar/cn_oh_isl_coils_cave_curt_sketch.jpg[/img][/url]
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Re: New user Dan Howitt, "Caving in the US compared to Europ

Postby gindling » Jan 11, 2018 9:50 am

Our deepest limestone cave is 1659 ft deep,
theirs is 7,188 ft deep.

Much more experience caving and camping at depth.

Though we have 5 out of the 10 longest caves in the world.

On the other hand, we want people to protect caves and waterways. - ohiocaver
i don't think its that we as as Americans care more about caves and waterways, I think they have less of a problem with graffiti and vandalism. Seems some Americans love to say they were here and who they love at the moment in garish paint on any unblemished canvas they can find.
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Re: New user Dan Howitt, "Caving in the US compared to Europ

Postby chac » Jan 11, 2018 1:19 pm

A good amount of cave access and specific cave entrance gates are maintained by local clubs in Europe and the UK. I don't mean this to be a blanket statement, however a long and often fruitful relationship between the cave clubs and landowners has led to easy yet controlled access to many caves. This has discouraged a lot of vandalism, while encouraging interested persons to join a club and take part in the club social and training activities. Cave maps are easier to find on that side of the pond, as access to the cave is more "controlled".

Depending on the cave you want to have a look at, you may need to be a member of a club and follow certain guidelines (number of team members, have proper vertical or diving skills, etc.). The club controls the access to the cave (key to the gate), sometimes you need to pay an obligatory visit to the landowner. For most caving activities, you must have insurance before you can participate in a trip.

As mentioned earlier, all cavers from around the world welcome other cavers with open arms and homes. If you are going in that direction, contact the local caving clubs some months in advance.
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Re: New user Dan Howitt, "Caving in the US compared to Europ

Postby danhowitt » Jan 12, 2018 6:18 am

trogman wrote:Having never caved in Europe, I am probably not really qualified to answer your question. I would say that our caving methodology in the U.S. is not "superior," but simply different. We do things differently for various reasons, some of them having to do with culture, some having to do with environment, etc. The primary difference I am aware of is in vertical caving, where we use 11 mm rope and pad lips, but Europeans generally use smaller ropes and set re-belays at rub points. Also, because of this, most Europeans use the Frog climbing system, vs the ropewalker that is more popular here in the U.S.

Trogman :helmet:


Interesting points. Thanks much.
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Re: New user Dan Howitt, "Caving in the US compared to Europ

Postby danhowitt » Jan 12, 2018 6:18 am

CaverScott wrote:See above, another thing I noticed on the ONE caving trip I did while on vacation is the Europeans use Rigging Cards. here is an example of one.

Image

https://cncc.org.uk/caving/topos/files/ ... Tunnel.jpg


Cool!
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Re: New user Dan Howitt, "Caving in the US compared to Europ

Postby danhowitt » Jan 12, 2018 6:19 am

ohiocaver wrote:Different is the operative word.
Good points made on gear - frog vs. ropewalker vs. other. My experience is that the European caving clubs tend to be more hierarchical - where most (but not all) US clubs are less regimented and the caving less graded. They are very adamant about using "their" systems vs. others.
It is MUCH easier to find information on caves in Europe (or anywhere else in the world). Simply ping http://www.grottocenter.org and you can find the locations of caves in just about any country EXCEPT the United States. In the US, there is a major stigma against even revealing to the un-anointed that caves exist. On the other hand, we want people to protect caves and waterways.
Both European and American cavers LOVE their sport and both would do anything for another caver or to better caves and caving. :bat sticker:


Agreed fully, thanks!
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Re: New user Dan Howitt, "Caving in the US compared to Europ

Postby danhowitt » Jan 12, 2018 6:20 am

gindling wrote:Our deepest limestone cave is 1659 ft deep,
theirs is 7,188 ft deep.

Much more experience caving and camping at depth.

Though we have 5 out of the 10 longest caves in the world.

On the other hand, we want people to protect caves and waterways. - ohiocaver
i don't think its that we as as Americans care more about caves and waterways, I think they have less of a problem with graffiti and vandalism. Seems some Americans love to say they were here and who they love at the moment in garish paint on any unblemished canvas they can find.


Great points, especially about how we want people to protect caves and waterways.
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Re: New user Dan Howitt, "Caving in the US compared to Europ

Postby danhowitt » Jan 12, 2018 6:20 am

chac wrote:A good amount of cave access and specific cave entrance gates are maintained by local clubs in Europe and the UK. I don't mean this to be a blanket statement, however a long and often fruitful relationship between the cave clubs and landowners has led to easy yet controlled access to many caves. This has discouraged a lot of vandalism, while encouraging interested persons to join a club and take part in the club social and training activities. Cave maps are easier to find on that side of the pond, as access to the cave is more "controlled".

Depending on the cave you want to have a look at, you may need to be a member of a club and follow certain guidelines (number of team members, have proper vertical or diving skills, etc.). The club controls the access to the cave (key to the gate), sometimes you need to pay an obligatory visit to the landowner. For most caving activities, you must have insurance before you can participate in a trip.

As mentioned earlier, all cavers from around the world welcome other cavers with open arms and homes. If you are going in that direction, contact the local caving clubs some months in advance.


Interesting also. Thanks!
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Cold/Ice caving?

Postby danhowitt » Jan 14, 2018 7:42 am

Regarding Alaska. Is there caving there or does the cold ground temperature limit it?

Ice caving? Is there such a thing? Exploring ice caves?
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Re: Cold/Ice caving?

Postby NZcaver » Jan 16, 2018 7:29 pm

danhowitt wrote:Regarding Alaska. Is there caving there or does the cold ground temperature limit it?

Ice caving? Is there such a thing? Exploring ice caves?

Yes, there are caves/caving/cavers in Alaska, although no active grottos/clubs right now. Most caves here require significant effort to access, like traveling by aircraft/boat/foot etc into remote locations. There is major limestone karst on Prince of Wales Island in southeast Alaska, and also on other islands in that region. Also some pockets of favorable karst in other parts of the state, although most of the geology in southcentral and the interior doesn't lend itself to major cave systems.

Yes, there is such a thing as ice caving - though the term is often misunderstood. An ice cave is a cave formed in rock that contains perennial ice. You may be thinking of glacier caves, which are caves formed in ice, often melting and reforming each year. Alaska does have glacier caves.

Here's a link to more information about caving in Alaska. Click on the play button to listen to the audio.
https://www.alaskapublic.org/2014/10/31 ... in-alaska/
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