Cave – FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions  
What is cavern diving?

Cavern diving is defined as a dive that takes place under no-decompression limits during daylight hours within direct sight of the surface. Limits for cavern diving are a maximum of 70 feet (21 m) deep and no more than 130 feet (40 m) of penetration into the cavern zone. The cavern must be large enough for two divers to swim side by side at all times. Visibility should be 40 or more feet (12 m).

What is cave diving?

Full cave diving is penetrating into a cave further than the sight of the surface or natural light. Cave diving is considered diving to a maximum depth of 130 feet (40 m), but routinely, cave divers explore to much deeper depths than that.

What do you see when cave diving?

Cave divers regularly speak about the shape of the tunnels, rock formations, pristine cave floor, etc. as some of the reasons they go where they go. The formation of the rocks, walls, and shape of cave tunnels is unique and can’t be seen in to many places on the surface. There is also life in caves, from blind crayfish to catfish. There are also many small creatures that live in caves, which are different from area to area. There is a lot of beauty in caves that you can only experience by going there.

Where do you go to cave dive?

Cave diving in Florida and Mexico is considered the best in the world and offers properly trained cave divers an opportunity to dive and explore to many levels of the sport. The Bahamas also have some great cave dives, as well as Cuba and some in Europe. The Florida springs and sinkholes offer spectacular cave diving into Florida’s aquifer. Mexican (Yucatan Peninsula) cave dives are some of the most beautiful in the world. The caves were dry during the ice age, so stalactites and stalagmites formed. When the ice melted and the water rushed back into the caves, the formations where frozen in time making for some of the most beautiful diving in the world.

Do I need special certification to dive in caves?

Yes, most definitely. Cave or cavern diving is extremely dangerous without the proper training. Cave and cavern diving requires special training, equipment, techniques, and procedures and should not be conducted unless you have the proper training. Don’t risk your life by thinking you should try cave diving to see if you like it before receiving the proper training.

Do I need to purchase special gear to dive in caves?

Yes. There is special equipment, such as line reels, backplate and harness, wing BC, primary and backup lights, special long hose for your regulators, etc. Your basic open water gear will not suffice for diving in caverns or caves.

Is cave diving safe?

Cave diving has been considered one of the most extreme and hazardous forms of diving, but it doesn’t have to be if you get proper training and follow the rules. With anything that risks your life, the safety factor exponentially grows when you receive the proper training. You wouldn’t skydive or fly an airplane without proper training and the same goes with cavern or cave diving. Cave diving is safe with the proper training, by following the rules, by having a good attitude, by having the proper equipment and configuring it correctly, and by being fit both physically and mentally.