Vertical Section

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The Vertical Section is an Internal Organization (I/O) of the National Speleological Society. Most vertical caves require rope work, and the Vertical Section convenes cavers with an interest in vertical caving. The purpose of the Section is to educate and train cavers in safe, efficient vertical caving techniques. Specific Vertical Section goals are to:

  • Educate NSS members about vertical caving theory and practice.
  • Promote interest in the study of vertical caving techniques.
  • Encourage development of safe vertical caving techniques and their application in cave exploration.

The Vertical Section is one of the largest I/Os of the NSS, and the Nylon Highway is the section's publication. The Section also develops training programs to help grottos conduct vertical classes involving consistent and current techniques.

Vertical cavers use techniques similar to those of mountaineers, but those techniques are adapted to the cave environment. Rope work can be hazardous and even deadly when rules are violated. The Vertical Section teaches those rules and helps cavers avoid disasters. Safe rope work cannot be learned by self-study or from a book alone. Only practice under the supervision of a competent, experienced instructor offers adequate training for the novice climber.

Be safe and get proper training before attempting rope work. Contact the Vertical Section's Education Coordinator for more information about training seminars, demonstrations, and practice sessions.

Additional information and/or Discussions can be found on the Vertical Section's forum on the NSS website forums at: http://forums.caves.org/. The name of the forum is "On Rope!".


If you have questions, comments, or suggestions for this site,
e-mail Gary Bush at caver07@wgbush.com

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Site Last Updated on Oct. 2, 2014