University of Bristol Spelæological Society

UBSS Caving Basics Guide

Details of the First Hut Weekend

This is an excellent introduction to caving, and a great way to meet fellow members of the club. Travel will be arranged to pick people up from the back of the Students Union between 9.30 and 9.45am on Saturday morning. We will then drive to the Mendip Hills for a good days caving.

our hut on the Mendip Hills

A meal will be provided at our club hut on Saturday evening. This will probably be a stew of some description - vegetarians will be catered for. There will then be a trip to the local boozer, returning to the hut for the night. Breakfast will be provided on Sunday morning, followed by more caving.

We will return to Bristol at about 6pm on Sunday.

....and what you need to bring

Helmets, belts and lights will be provided, but you will need to bring the following:

(If you have any problems, ask at the stall on Thursday or Friday, or get in touch with one of the committee).

For more information on caving equipment, see the gear guide. If you don't have any suitable footwear, ask us at the stall as we have limited spare kit kicking about.


A hardcopy of the club handbook will be given to all members shortly after fresh. You can also download the PDF version of the handbook. You will need Adobe Acrobat reader to view the file. Acrobat reader can be downloaded for free.


The UBSS complies with the National Caving Association guidelines for university caving clubs. As part of this we hold regular seminars and training sessions for trip leaders. However, it is also imperative that you are trained, and to this end we hold training sessions in the union stair well from about six thirty onward on a Tuesday. This is usually every week in the first term and then every other week in the second. As well as a good place to find UBSS it is also an excellent opportunity to practice some of the basic skills that you will need underground. If you decide that this is the sport that you have been looking for later on we start to teach the techniques that will get you to the bottom of the worlds deepest holes.

Jess Brock has written an excellent starters' guide to SRT techniques. It can be downloaded from here.

The University Risk Assessment we use to comply with the NCA guidelines can be viewed as a pdf..

The Risk Assement that covers the training sessions in the Student's Union can also be viewed as a pdf.

Cave Rescue on Mendip - How to call a rescue

Everybody should be aware of what to do in the case of an accident or other emergency. On Mendip, the relevant rescue organisation is Mendip Cave Rescue. The details of how to call them out can be found by following this link. Before caving on Mendip, everybody should read this information. It is important and may save your life.

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