What is caving?
Caving is an educational, multidisciplinary sport combining scientific, environmental, physical and leisure qualities.
Its main objective is the exploration of karst rock and all natural, artificial or anthropogenic underground environments, in order to make an active contribution to the study, understanding and conservation of caving systems, whilst taking into account the heritage sites located above the surface.
Caving systems are made up of a range of different shapes and landscapes (chambers, meanders, galleries, sinkholes, etc.), with or without the presence of water (in the form of rapids, streams, rivers, gorges, waterfalls, pools, lakes etc.), and/or ice. The term also includes man-made sites such as mines and quarries.
Entrances to caving systems can be found in the form of outcrops, hollows, cliffs or gorges. Caving involves progressing through the underground system either by walking (although the terrain is often rough and uneven), crawling, swimming, underwater diving, sliding, climbing, or ascending and descending with or without the use of fragmented apparatus or other equipment designed to help move through the caving system (such as handrails, safety lines, zip-lines, fixed ladders, etc.), which may require the use of a range of safety techniques. Sometimes it is necessary to remove obstructions in order to gain access to certain chambers or to get through narrow passages.
Massif de Margeriaz :
371 underground chambers making up more than 79km of galleries descending to a depth of -817m underground. This mountain range has one of the largest caving systems in the Savoie region. It has 3 geosites within Les Bauges Geopark: Tanne du Névé, Cascade du Pissieu and the 'Tannes et Glacières' karstic trail.
To make the most of your caving excursion in complete safety, contact a professional guide. There are several professional caving instructors in Le Massif des Bauges offering guided excursions.