What is a caving expedition?
Caving expeditions offer an almost unique prospect: the discovery of places on our planet that are as yet totally unexplored. This summer we will be exploring places less visited than the surface of the moon. We need your help to ensure that we are properly equipped and can make the most out of this experience.
This summer 20 of us will be camping 5 hours walk from the nearest road in the Durmitor mountains in Montenegro, where we will spend our time exploring and surveying caves we have located in previous years, and searching for new entrances.
Day to day life on the mountain is rewarding, but tough: caving trips are frequently long (>24 hours is quite likely this year) and searching for entrances involves walking long distances and covering rough ground.
Are we capable of running a successful trip?
We think so! An unbelievable amount of organisation goes into these trips, and we have learned a lot in our previous visits to the area. In 2011, three of us visited the area and saw the potential it had to offer, and we arranged visits in 2012 and 2013 to start exploring the caves in the area. At the end of last year's trip we left a large number of caves that we didn't have time to explore fully, the deepest being 300 m deep with open passage continuing below.
The experience we have gained over these previous trips as well as the training weekends we run throughout the year will stand us in good stead for a successful trip this year.
20 people are going in the summer and are currently training hard to be fit enough and capable of making this summer a real success.
What is the outcome?
Reporting the finds of our expedition is as important to us as the expedition itself. We will write up a comprehensive report of the trip which will be available on our website (http://durmitor.yucpc.org.uk/) along with all the other information we record on the trip. We also aim to document our trips with photos and video.
The outcome that is much less tangiable is the experience of it all. Experiencing being the first person to ever set eyes on part of out planet is something that is hard to put into words, but is certainly something you never forget. Being part of such a close-knit team in such a remote location after all the preparation beforehand provides a huge sense of reward, and being a part of organising such a logistically challenging project demands skills that are extremely useful in other situations.
So why do we need to raise money?
We have a huge amount of enthusiasm for our project, but unfortunately to be successful more than just enthusiasm is required!
We don't expect anyone to fund our personal costs such as travel/insurance etc, but exploring and surveying deep caves requires a large amount of equipment, and as the caves get deeper, we need more gear!
Put simply, the more gear we can afford to buy, the better equipped we will be to run a successful expedition in the summer and in years to come. Our list of required gear currently includes (but isn't limited to!):
- Rope (>£1 per metre)
- Carabiners (£7 each)
- Slings (£5 each)
- Drill (£200)
- Surveying equipment (£150)
- Stoves (£100)
- Water purification (£20)
- Solar panels (£200)
- GPSs (£200)
- Radios (£50)
If you can help us with a donation towards any of these items we will reward you with some cool items - see right for details.
Can't help fund us at the moment?
If you like the sound of the project but can't help us out financially, we'd love it if you could help us out in any way you can.
Do you have any contacts that could help? We're after all sorts of equipment for the trip, and every little helps.
We'd really appreciate it if you could help share the project. To do so, click the 'I want to help' button above. Just a simple like on our facebook page would help us out!
Thanks very much for reading about our project. We hugely appreciate any help you can give us.JVC: another YUCPC discovery in Durmitor