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Cave Permit Information for:
Special use groups (camps, schools, religious groups, scouts, etc)

Notes:

  • Please note, the National Speleological Society, Inc. (NSS) and the Northeastern Cave Conservancy, Inc. (NCC) are completely separate 501(c)(3) organizations. Both are staffed by volunteers. Neither charge a fee for use of their properties but are happy to receive donations at the addresses listed below.

  • We have combined this information to help make your visits to these caves easier.

  • Guides are not provided by these organizations. Contact your local caving club through caves.org if you are looking for a guide as they may be able to help you.

  • For any questions or clarification please contact specialuse@necaveconservancy.org

Revised: 9/9/2016
 
Caves owned by the Northeastern Cave Conservancy (NCC)

General NCC Checklist (for all NCC caves):

  • Contact the group use coordinators to make a reservation at specialuse@necaveconservancy.org

  • Provide certificate of additionally insured to: Northeastern Cave Conservancy, Inc., PO Box 254, Schoharie NY 12157. In addition, a PDF of this should be e-mailed to specialuse@necaveconservancy.org.

    Note: All certificates of additionally insured naming the NCC inc must verify a minimum of $1,000,000 per occurance liability coverage.

  • Provide a general NSS/NCC waiver for each member of the party who will enter any of these properties. All lines must be filled in. Only one waiver is needed per person and covers both the NCC
    and NSS waiver requirements. These must be signed by both the parent/guardian and participant, and
    two witnesses.

  • No more than 15 people total, including leaders, in a group. (12 for scout groups including the
    leaders)

  • Scout groups must follow the National Scout rules for caving and submit a copy of their tour permit.
    For BSA rules see http://www.scouting.org/pubs/gss/gss09.html

  • Once paperwork is complete, the group use coordinator will provide the group with a window permit
    to be displayed in the car window while parked at the cave.

  • Camping is not allowed on any NCC property

  • Please note that there are no bathroom facilities at NCC preserves. Please plan ahead. The NCC supports the principles of Leave No Trace.

1

Knox Cave

  • Minimum of 4 in party
  • Read Information Sheet
  • Date specific release form (sign in sheet)
2

Onesquethaw Cave

  • Minimum of 4 in party
  • Read Information Sheet
  • Date specific release form (sign in sheet)
3

Clarksville Cave (Ward-Gregory)

  • Minimum of 4 in party
  • No fires please
4

Sellecks, Levys, Cave 575

  • Not recommended for special use groups
5

Ella Armstrong

  • Ella Armstrong is a vertical cave and thus not recommended for most special use groups. Groups that are vertically competant may enter the cave.
6

Bentleys Cave

  • Minimum of 4 in party
  • Read Information Sheet
  • Date specific release form (sign in sheet)
7

Crossbones

  • Not recommended for special use groups
8

Bensons Cave

  • Minimum of 4 in party
  • Read Information Sheet
  • Each party member must be proficient in vertical caving techniques and have their own set of gear.
  • Date specific release form (sign in sheet)
9

Merlins Cave

  • Not recommended for special use groups

Caves Owned by the National Speleological Society (NSS)

Note: No cave for pay is allowed in NSS owned caves. Cave for pay means those groups where a leader receives payment for activities related solely to the cave trip. This may include but is not limited to, rental of cave equipment, transportation to the cave, and guide services. If you have questions, please contact a manager.

General NSS Checklist (for all NSS caves):

  • Contact the group use coordinators to make a reservation at specialuse@necaveconservancy.org

  • Provide certificate of additionally insured to; National Speleological Society, 2813 Cave Avenue,
    Huntsville Al 35810. In addition, a PDF of this should be e-mailed to specialuse@necaveconservancy.org.

  • Provide a general NSS/NCC waiver for each member of the party who will enter any of these properties. All lines must be filled in. Only one waiver is needed per person and covers both the NCC
    and NSS waiver requirements. These must be signed by both the parent/guardian and participant, and
    two witnesses.

  • No more than 15 people total, including leaders, in a group. (10 for scout groups including the
    leaders)

  • Scout groups must follow the National Scout rules for caving and submit a copy of their tour permit.
    For BSA rules see http://www.scouting.org/pubs/gss/gss09.html

  • Once paperwork is complete, the group use coordinator will provide the group with a window permit
    to be displayed in the car window while parked at the cave.
1

Schoharie Caverns

  • No other paperwork needs to be completed to visit this cave.
  • Minimum of 4 in party
  • Camping on this property is strongly discouraged. Any camping would require a special permit. The property can not be reserved for a single group and facilities are limited. Adult activities, such as smoking and alcohol consumption may occur on this property.
2

McFails Cave, Hanors/Disappointment Caves

  • Not recommended for special group use
  • Surface visits require no further paperwork.
3

Gage Caverns, Greens Cave, Keyhole Cave

  • Minimum of 4 in party
  • Read information sheet
  • Date specific release form (sign in sheet)
  • Belay equipment and ability to use it.
  • Camping on this property is not allowed.
  • For Keyhole Cave, there is a leadership requirement.
 

WAIVERS
Waivers and releases for caves owned and/or managed by the NCC are found below.

General NCC and NSS Waiver PDF format
 
Crossbones Cave PDF format