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What to Wear and Bring on a Caving Trip

Caving Trip

What to Wear and Bring on a Caving Trip

What to Wear and Bring on a Caving Trip

Caving is a fun and cheap outdoor activity. Navigating the insides of a cave can be a vigorous exercise for many, keeping them comfortably warm. But stopping to rest would cause a caver to get chilly, and this could be a concern especially if the plan is to be underground for several hours. Thus, it is important to dress properly for a caving trip.
The usual thinking is that a caver should wear old clothes when going underground. After all, it makes sense because it is muddy inside caves. Yet most experienced cavers suggest the wearing of coveralls as over a shirt, sweater and long pants.

Also called a caving suit, coveralls can come in cotton and cotton-polyester material designed to protect the wearer against cold. The cotton-polyester variety is considered the more superior type in terms of durability, lessening the chances of ripped coveralls as the wearer squeezes through a crack.
While the caving suit or coverall serves as the outer layer, a caver can also wear a shirt and pants as the middle layer, with long underwear as the inner layer. Fabrics ideal for the long underwear include silk, wool and synthetics, but never cotton. Although cotton is warm when dry, it can draw more heat from the wearer’s skin when it is wet. Unlike cotton, other materials like silk and wool retain their insulating properties when wet.

Adding more layers can severely hamper the mobility of the wearer. The key to choosing cave gear and clothing is to balance the number of clothes designed to keep the caver warm while keeping in mind the amount of movement needed in navigating through the cave.

Aside from the clothes, most people who are going on their first caving trip will be concerned with the things they’ll be bringing. Cave gear like headlamps and hardhat should be put in a shoulder bag made of canvas or nylon. A hiker’s shoulder bag made of the said fabrics is easy to maneuver especially in constricted areas. A small backpack will also do, but enough to bring food, plastic water as well as extra lights.

A cheap disposable camera should be brought inside a cave instead of an ordinary camera. When dried, cave mud can become abrasive dust that can damage a DSLR. Aside from this, bring other essentials like light hiking boots and plastic garbage bag for holding dirty cave clothes.

What to wear and bring on a caving trip is essential for making your caving trip successful and a pleasant experience.

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