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Caving vs Climbing

I went caving with Rachel S., Ian Reuter, and Ethan Reuter and noticed a few differences from climbing... obviously.

➜It's dark... all the time. Don't run out of light. The sun isn't coming up in the morning.

➜It's constant temperature. The cave we were in is cold enough to get hypothermia if you sat around long enough without a jacket. But that also means you can do it year around.

➜You practice climbing indoors (in a gym) and you practice caving outside on rocks to learn how your vertical gear works.

➜Its muddy. Real muddy since there isn't weathering to keep the rocks clean, it's not exactly "climbable" rock. It gets in all your gear and so rappel devices have to be designed to work even when caked with mud.

➜Caves are very 3D compared to climbing. This affects where you go, getting lost, building anchors to keep ropes from rubbing, and there is no summit.

➜You can't always see the bottom. You could be crawling over something with a gap that is very very large drop.

➜Ropes rubbing in caves is dangerous. Especially if permanently fixed.

➜Names of cave areas are not that creative

➜Rescues are very very complicated. Don't get hurt!

➜Things you drop ping pong and can come back and hit someone below you

➜You use your own rope if you can access the top. So if you rappel and come back up, you use your own rope. If you can't access the top, the rope stays permanent. Cavers don't pull the rope down so the next party can "enjoy" putting it back up there.

➜Vertical exploration is rare in caving, and that is the only activity that really resembles climbing and even then it is more like aid climbing because you're climbing in rubber boots! That is the only scenario you have a dynamic rope, otherwise it's all static ropes.

➜You pee IN the water so it gets flushed out. That is taboo outside when you are climbing.

➜Go with SEVERAL people who KNOW WHAT THEY ARE DOING! Don't go in a cave by yourself or with another gumbie. It's dangerous!

See Ethan's Instagram!

See Rachel's Instagram

Vintage Cave rope break test:

Pit bouncing video:

Learn Caving from Derek's resources....

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