W&L is fortunate to be located in the center of the limestone region of Virginia. The state of Virginia contains over 3650 known caves. Caving is mostly restricted to private land. 95% of known caves are on private property. It is therefore necessary to obtain permission to enter them. Good landowner relations are absolutely imperative to keep the caves open.
A good start to getting into caving is to join a cave trip sponsored by the outing club or a local grotto. A knowledgeable guide, who will lead the group, will provide you with the helmets, lamps and packs and any other necessary equipment. Personal gear that you should bring consists of: Several layers of warm clothing, gloves, good hiking boots, spare flash lights and batteries and any specialized gear you may need. An organized caving group also:
Since caves are such a fragile resource, research cannot be carried out indiscriminately. Most states have some form of cave protection act, which make it illegal to collect or disturb any form of mineral material, animal life, historical or paleontological remains without a proper permit.
For more detailed information and a list of contacts, you may purchase the Washington and Lee Outing Club Guidebook through the Outing Club, the W&L Bookstore or local booksellers.