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Vertical caving takes this exciting sport of crawling in the mud and squeezing into holes to the next level.

Rappelling into a hole, even only 30 to 50 feet deep, takes you to a whole new world. A world away from the everyday spelunkers where caverns hold beautiful stalactites, stalagmites, and columns that took hundreds of thousands of years to create. Vertical caving can take you hundreds of feet underground to see geology and biology that is found nowhere else.

Learning the skills of a vertical caver is not easy and it is not cheap. It takes hours of practice to get the knots, gear, rope, and techniques just right for a trilling and safe descent. And the rewards of the underground beauty and the feeling of self accomplishment are found no where else.

With the right equipment
Dragon Breath Grotto can provide the instruction and help youth from Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, and Maryland experience the thrill and discovery vertical caving offers.
YOUCave is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation.

I have found that teaching vertical caving techniques to older youth, i.e; descending and ascending climbing ropes under carefully controlled conditions, both inside caves and on surface bluffs, benefits them in multiple ways. The physical and mental challenges of the activities helps satisfy their desire for high adventure and builds self-confidence and self-esteem. It teaches them self-discipline through respect for, and adherence to, the required safety rules and the use of proper equipment and techniques. They learn that they can overcome daunting situations and their initial fears by application of knowledge, training, and clear thinking. These personal lessons received from achievements on rope will transfer to other endeavors in their future lives, helping them to be more successful and become better citizens.” - Terry Mitchell, Chairman, Vertical Section, National Speleological Society


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