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Why should you join the NSS?
(Renewals (including CDS) - Click Here)

If you're interested in caves, you belong in the National Speleological Society (NSS). Founded in 1941, we're a nationwide organization with a membership of more than 12,000 men and women from all walks of life and age groups. Our members are bound together by our love of caves and desire to protect the underground wilderness for future generations. We're people like you who have joined the NSS to:

  • Go caving safely and responsibly
  • Help protect caves from accidental or intentional damage
  • Learn about the latest caving activities and discoveries, equipment, and techniques (in the NSS News) and keep abreast of scientific studies (in the NSS Journal of Cave & Karst Studies).
  • Take part in the Society's annual convention and local events to meet other cavers, share information, go caving around the country, learn more about caves and caving, and enjoy the fellowship of others who share our passion about caves.
  • Stay in touch with other cavers through the annual NSS Members Manual.
  • Help keep caves accessible to cavers
  • Support the Society's programs that help conserve, protect, and study caves and karst.

We know that the future for caves and karst depends on the strength that comes from many individuals working together, and we want to be a part of it.

National Clout:
Through its members, the NSS has a broad range of expertise that we can focus to address cave conservation problems. Working together we can bring political pressure on legislators to enact cave conservation laws and ensure that the caves we use are protected for future generations. The NSS is recognized and respected by government agencies and landowners, and with your membership, you share in the clout and esteem that the Society has built up over the decades.

Local Grottos:
Around the country, NSS members have formed over 200 local chapters, called grottos, as well as a dozen regional organizations. These groups organize caving trips, offer training, arrange cave conservation and restoration projects, offer comraderie, and generally provide a framework for enjoying and studying caves. Grottos welcome new members who are interested in caves and committed to cave conservation.

Sections:
In addition to grottos, the Society has many specific interest groups, called sections, covering such topics as photography, conservation, vertical caving, geology, cave diving, and cartography. Several of these sections publish periodic newsletters and sponsor sessions at the Society's annual convention.

NSS Bookstore:
NSS members receive a discount at our bookstore on books published by the NSS. Additionally, only NSS members may purchase the Speleo Digest (the annual compilation of the most important articles appearing in grotto newsletters), and NSS Convention guidebooks with information about the caves and geology of an area.

Libraries:
The NSS houses the nation's largest speleological library and audio-visual library, which are available for members' use. The library is completely supported bymembership dues and donations.

Additional Benefits:
For a small fee, NSS members may obtain a caves.org e-mail address and create a personal, cave-oriented website on the NSS server. Your NSS membership also supports cave conservation and safety education; education programs for schools and youth groups; development of safe caving techniques; grants for research, exploration, and study of caves; caving-related art, including photography, videography, music, and fine arts; and the nation's largest and most active caving forum, CaveChat. And now you can camp for free at the new HSS Headquarters in Huntsville, AL, in the heart of TAG cave country.

Click here for information about joining the NSS, including CDS, and a membership application.

Click here for an NSS Informational Brochure.


The NSS provides a Life Membership discount for members over age 59. Please contact the NSS Office for the price.

This page last updated on August 24, 2013