Some Rules for the Road!
1) Do NOT enter a property unless you have permission
to do so. In this modern world, caving always requires permission unless you own the cave! Whether
it's from a private land owner or a government agency.to do so!
2) Caves on Government land usually require permits, contact the appropriate
agency for information on how to gain a permit to enter the cave(s).
3) When visiting a privately owned cave, have a legal
sportsman's release disclaimer signed by all
if the cave owner requires it.
4) Cavers and land owners should acquaint themselves with the Texas
Sportsman's Law available
5) Access to some caves requires crossing private land. Ask permission for the
privilege to cross. Leave fence gates the way you found them (unless told
otherwise). Avoid disturbing livestock,
leave private buildings alone and stay on established roads. If you notice signs of vandalism,
notify the landowners or land management agency as soon as possible.
6) Always follow the rules established by the landowner, be it government or private land!
7) If you discover prehistoric, cultural or Paleolithic remains, take nothing but pictures
and move nothing. Don't touch! Touching or picking up can destroy the artifact.
Collecting is strictly prohibited by law.
8) Start your caving experience with an experienced Caver(s) until you
become an experienced caver yourself!
9) Take responsibility for yourself, landowners and your fellow cavers
didn't take you to raise! If you sign a liability release, honor it!
10) Know your own limitations! If you don't feel comfortable doing it, don't!
11) Tell three people where you are going caving and when you expect to be
back and be sure to let them know when you return!
12) Cave with at least three people. A perfect size group is four to six
people. Over six, the group becomes hard to manage, making movement through the cave
slow and increases the risk of damage.
13) Be aware that every cave is unique with it's own special conditions and hazards.
Some conditions may include but are not limited to: flash floods, cold temperatures, vertical drops,
bad air and and airborne diseases.
14) Inspect your gear to ensure proper operation before entering the cave.
15) Avoid touching, walking or climbing on any cave formation. Disturbance will destroy
the beauty of the formations forever. Even with today's restoration techniques, a damaged
formation will never be the same once damaged.
16) Bring enough food and water for an unexpected stay in the cave.
17) If there are established trails, stay on them. Avoid trampling areas and impacting the cave
environment. Respect closed areas. They are closed for a reason!
18) Do not mark on the walls of a cave...for any reason! Permanently marking or
defacing cave walls and formations is strictly prohibited by law and can land you in jail!
19) Avoid becoming lost; pay attention to your route and the way out. Use
temporary flagging if you are unfamiliar with the cave or if it is your first cave trip to the
cave even though you have a map. Remove any flagging on your way out.
20) The trip leader needs to be aware of each member's fitness level and caving experience.
21) If a group member is not prepared for a cave planned on, the trip leader needs to
choose an alternate cave or recommend the person wait until they have the necessary skills.
22) If the group isn't prepared for self rescue, stay close to the cave
entrance. it can take 24 to 48 hours to assemble a rescue
team. Cave rescues are not easy and can require days to remove an
injured caver. Cave rescues are also extremely expensive! Not
to mention the damage they can cause to the cave.
23) In your cave pack, have an individual first aid kit that includes band-aids, first
aid cream or a triple antibiotic ointment, roll of black electrical tape and alcohol wipes.
24) Have and use a container/packaging for all human waste. The rule goes, pack
it in, pack it out!
25) If you do use carbide, remember it is poisonous, so pack out all spent
carbide. Be especially careful when changing carbide to not spill it
out in the cave.
26) When eating in a cave, be careful not to leave
crumbs. Never leave food scrapes so animals begin to associate food with human
presence. This is valid in your camp site also.
27) Do not use rope or gear of others who may be visiting the cave at the same time.
28) If a passage is to fragile, turn back.
29) Enjoy your caving adventure by taking nothing but pictures, leaving only foot prints
and killing nothing but time!