The Western Australian Speleological Group (WASG)

The Western Australian Speleological Group (Inc)(WASG) was founded in 1959 and is still a very active caving club in Australia. Its logo, shown to the right, is a picture of our first Treasurer - Graham Davies standing beneath a formation known as the Judge's Wig in Strongs Cave in the South-West of Western Australia.

This page has been around since 10th June 1996.

You are visitor number  to this site.

The WASG Postal address is PO Box 67, NEDLANDS 6909.

The Informer - Monthly News

  • This is the clubs monthly newsletter. It is posted or emailed to all members every month except January. It contains details of all WASG trips as well as news of current events affecting the club and its members.


    WASG Documents

  • The WASG Membership Form - PDF File
  • WASG Constitution
  • WASG By-Laws
    WASG is a group of people interested in more than just caving. If YOU are interested in learning what makes caves tick; what beasties live in them; safety techniques; learning about vertical entry e.g. with ladders and ropes; cave surveying; cave photography etc. then the club can help.

    Some of the services provided by the club are:

  • Equipment for a nominal hire eg. helmets, ropes, ladders
  • Library
  • Map Library
  • Hut & camp-site near Margaret River
  • Annual magazine
  • Monthly information newsletters
  • National and International Affiliations

    The W.A.S.G. is a full council member of the Australian Speleological Federation (Inc) (ASF) which is a federation of the majority of caving groups throughout Australia. The ASF holds annual council meetings and biennial caving conferences at various locations throughout Australia. The ASF sets codes and guidelines which all of its member groups such as WASG are expected to uphold. e.g. the
  • The ASF Code of Ethics,
  • The ASF Safety Guidlines and the
  • ASF Minimal Impact Caving Code (MICC).

    W.A.S.G. meets on the first Tuesday of every month (except January).

  • W.A.S.G. Meetings for 2015 will be held at the east wing of the Tom Dadour Community Centre in Subiaco - the address is
    363 Bagot Road, Subiaco.

    Link to the location on Google Maps

    At the meetings we discuss matters of interest to cavers, have past and future trip reports and guest speakers with slide shows or a video.

    W.A.S.G. like most groups is run by a committee which consists of:
  • President
  • Vice Pres.
  • Secretary
  • Treasurer
  • Librarian
  • Property Officer
  • Coordination Officer
  • Conservation Officer
  • 3 Committee positions

    The current WASG Committee
    In addition there are a few non committee positions:
  • Safety Officer
  • State Cave Recorder & Map Curator
  • Editor (The Western Caver)

    The COORDINATION OFFICER is a good person to get in touch with if you are unable to find someone to take you caving. This person organises hut bookings so they generally know who is going caving.

    The Treasurer is also a person that new members should contact. This person will help you become a paid 'trial member', for the fee shown on the Membership form, and try and organise you onto a caving trip. They can also provide you with information about the club.

    The WASG information kit includes the following information:

  • the facilities and equipment available to you
  • the rules of WASG
  • how to gain access to locked caves
  • the ethics of caving
  • the minimal impact caving code
  • the safety requirements for caving

    and is supplied when new members join the WASG.


    The WASG maintains a database containing all of its past and present members. To keep this information up to date if you change any of the details on your membership form (e.g. address) then please inform the Treasurer, PO Box 67, NEDLANDS, 6909 of the new details.

    WASG LIBRARY


    The WASG library is a useful source of information for both new and experienced cavers. The library consists of the following:

    JOURNALS:


    Approximately 4500 caving related journals including newsletters and publications from most of the Australian caving clubs and selected overseas publications. Several of these journals cover a time period dating back to the late 1950's. These publications contain varied information ranging from trip reports, accident reports, conservation, climbing techniques, cave research ... These publications are an invaluable source of information for the caver planning a trip to other regions of Australia, or overseas.

    BOOKS:

    Approximately 250 books. The books are broken into the following broad categories:

    CW
    - Caves of the World (CW): publications concerning specific overseas cave areas or systems such as the Carlsbad caverns or Waitomo caves.
    TE - Technical: publications of a technical nature such as single rope technique, cave diving, photography ...
    S - Scientific: publications of a scientific nature such as geology, fauna, guides to identifying bones...
    C - Conservation: publications of a conservation nature such as environmental reports.
    M - Management plans: publications of a management nature including national park management plans, cave gating, cave tourism ...
    SCAUS - Specific Caves Australia: Guides to Australian caves and areas.
    GR - General reading: publications of general interest to cavers including books from the classic cave explorers.

    REPRINTS:

    The library contains a selection of technical papers covering all areas of karst research.

    SLIDES/PHOTOGRAPHS:

    The library contains a selection of photographs and slides taken by various club members. We are trying to build up a reasonably complete photographic record of our caves and karst areas.

    The slide library contains some 600 slides whose details have been placed in a computer database. Infomation regarding slides can be retrieved from the cumputer. If you are looking for slides from a particular cave or on a particular topic then the database can produce lists to your requirements.

    ARCHIVAL MATERIAL:

    Past meeting minutes and other pretty interesting stuff.

    WESTERN CAVER:

    The library contains a complete record of our club journal. The journal has been computer indexed by Steve Brooks allowing information on specific caves, cave areas, fauna ... to be found quickly. Some surplus back issues are also available to club members at a nominal price.

    The library is available to all WASG members. Viewing of the library can be arranged by contacting the librarian. A list of all the titles held in the library is also available. Library material may also be exchanged at general meetings by prior arrangement.

    Caves Austraila (previously AUSTRALIAN CAVER and ASF Newsletter):

    The library is also contains the majority of the issues of Caves Australia and Australian Caver (AC) (formerly the ASF Newsletter) which is produced by the ASF and sent to all members. This means you! If you would like to look at back issues then the library is the place for you. The ASF can provided some copies of AC in back issues. Contact the ASF, PO Box 388, Broadway 2007 NSW for details of which issues are available.

    WASG MAP LIBRARY


    The map library contains copies and originals of most of the caves that have been mapped by WASG members since the club began in 1959. Maps can be viewed by contacting the Map Curator to arrange a time to look at required maps. Maps may be copied for members who require a copy for research work, a project. or even if you just have an interest in a specific cave. Some maps may be subect to Copyright and will require permission from the author before copies can be made.

    A computer database is available to determine if a map of a particular cave exists. The database can be searched by cave name or number to determine if a map is available. The program also produces reports of cave maps by area. The details available for each map include, the name of the cave, the number of the cave, the scale of the map, the grade of the survey, the surveyors name and who holds the original map. The physical size of the map is also stored. This information is important when copying maps as some maps may be several metres in length!

    WASG PROPERTY:


    The WASG owns various pieces of equipment some of this equipment by its very nature can be dangerous if used by untrained people. For this reason, not much of it is available to new members. The equipment is available for a nominal charge to full members and Trip Leaders.

    The property officer also holds a small supply of Calcium Carbide rock which is for sale again at a nominal price. Calcium Carbide is a rock which, when mixed with water, produces Acetylene and, if all this occurs in a controlled manner in a carbide lamp, gives a warm yellow light with which to cave by.

    The categories of equipment are given below:

    GENERAL ACCESS:

    Carbide Lamps
    Carbide Rock $2.50/kg
    Hard Hats

    VERTICAL:

    Cave Ladders
    6 x 50'
    1 x 30'
    1 x 20'
    Static Ropes
    3 x 11mm x 50m
    Dynamic Ropes
    1 x 11mm x 50m
    1 x 9mm x 50m
    Large Pulleys
    Stokes Litter Rescue stretcher
    Gloves

    SURVEY:

    Garmin GPS XL38
    Suunto Compasses and Clinometers
    Surveyors Tripod
    Surveyors Staff

    OTHER:

    Palaeontology - Archaeology Sieves
    Jarring Bar (manual percussion hammer)

    WASG HUT:


    WASG currently shares a lease which contains two small blocks of land. The two blocks are in the Boranup forest which is now part of the Leeuwin - Naturaliste National Park. We share the lease with another Speleological Group - Speleological Research Group of Western Australian (SRGWA). We use one block and SRG uses the other. Each group has a hut on their block. The actual location is just South of Witchcliffe which is South of Margaret River.

    Access: Ring or email the to book.
    Facilities: Hut with rough bunks AND NEW ROOF (2002). You need everything else including drinking water. The tank water has many wrigglers in it and should be boiled. Pot belly stove inside. Fire place outside. A few tables. Some Chairs.
    Cost: Free to members - non members $5/night (equivalent to the CALM camping fee). Only groups with public liability insurance are able to book the hut.
    Cleaning: Leave it cleaner than when you came.
    Toilet: A luxurious pit toilet is located 40m from the hut and there is normally toilet paper there, but BYO, just in case!
    Conditions: It can be extremely hot, cold, wet at the hut. Take appropriate clothing even in summer.
    Tents: Camping out is ok, but camp in the already cleared areas.
    Trees: Unless you like large dents on your car, don't put your car under any large trees ... they have a habit of dropping their branches!

    To contact the WASG please send mail to the contact email address