Basic caving gear



  • Helmet with chinstrap and headlamp
  • Backup lights (at least 3 independent sources; i.e. extra headlamp, flashlights, LEDs, glow sticks)
  • Extra batteries and bulbs (for ALL light sources)
  • Candle, cigarette lighter, or matches for testing for bad air
  • Knee pads
  • Elbow pads (optional but useful)
  • Gloves (Work-type, canvas or leather)
  • Hiking boots (sturdy; non-marking/light-soled)
  • Boot socks
  • Jeans, shirt, sweatshirt or light jacket (will get dirty)
  • Small backpack (day-pack) or fannypack
  • Water bottle
  • Drinking water
  • Pee bottle
  • Food (high-energy, easy-to-eat)
  • Plastic bags/ziplocks for trash, food, etc.
  • First aid kit (basic, compact; at least one person in the caving party should have this item)


Other helpful but optional caving gear

  • Waterproof plastic drum or 1 gal. Nalgene (for wet caves)
  • Water socks (for working on or around formations)
  • Space blanket
  • Hand warmer pouches

Basic camping equipment

  • Tent and groundsheet
  • Sleeping bag, pad, pillow
  • Sunblock
  • First-aid kit
  • Non-caving clothes; dry clothes for exiting cave
  • Rain jacket or poncho
  • Food, drinking water, cooking & eating utensils

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