Cave Gold

This course is not sold directly online.  If you'd like to sign up or have questions:

Introduction


Cave Gold training is an "unlimited course" that removes all restrictions from the Cave 3 certification.  It develops the cave diver’s multi-bottle cave diving proficiency.  This very demanding cave training seeks to refine the cave diving techniques of divers who have mastered the requirements of Technical 2 and Cave 3.  To succeed, students must be experienced in the fundamental aspects of cave diving and comfortable in the use of multiple stage and decompression bottles.

Course Information

Training requirements include a minimum of 8 cave dives at a minimum of 3 different diving locations.  Special emphasis will be placed on the demands of extended overhead penetration; advanced navigation techniques including traverses, circuits, and siphons; advanced gas management; restrictive passage negotiation procedures; precision propulsion techniques; decompression risk management and protocol; and extensive stage bottle management.

Cave Gold training is normally conducted over a 5-day period, and involves a minimum of 40 hours of instruction (lectures and in-water) designed to extend the diver's overhead skills and appreciation for the dangers, challenges and beauty of the cave environment.

Course Limits

  • All dives conducted with a deco bottle
  • Scooter diving only if certified as Cave 3 with Stage Mini

  • Rebreather diving only if certified Cave 3 and necessary UTD Rebreather level to complete the dive

Requirements

  • Minimum age of 21
  • Must have completed UTD Cave 3
  • Must have completed UTD Technical 2 or equivalent
  • Must have at least 25 non-training cave dives at the Cave 3 level
  • Must have at least 25 non-training technical decompression dives at the Technical 2 level
  • Must have proof of at least 200 non-training dives, with at least 60 non-training dives in double cylinders
  • Must complete UTD online registration process
  • Must be able to swim 400 yards/365m in less than 14 minutes without stopping
  • Must be able to swim a distance of 60'/18m on a breath hold
  • No smoking
  • Use of prescription drugs must be authorized by a physician prior to training

Equipment Requirements

Prior to the commencement of the course, students should consult with a UTD representative to verify equipment requirements.  All participants are responsible for providing all equipment or for making provisions to secure all necessary equipment before the start of the course.

In general, it is better for the student to learn while using their own equipment.  However, students should exercise caution before purchasing new equipment to avoid acquiring substandard or unnecessary equipment.  Please contact us prior to making any purchases.

Sidemount Equipment Requirements

  • Cylinders:  sidemount pluggable double cylinders with appropriate stage rigging and quick disconnects
  • Two additional stage bottles
  • At least one decompression bottle
  • Low pressure distribution system such as a Z-Distribution Block or Z-Isolator Manifold
  • Regulator system: primary second stage with a donatable 5’ or 7’ hose stowed in a wrapped fashion around the diver’s neck, and a backup second stage bungeed around the diver’s neck in a necklace fashion
  • Buoyancy compensator/trim device: rear inflation-type/wing or trim device
  • Z-System harness or equivalent
  • Depth-measuring device
  • Time-keeping device
  • Compass
  • Mask
  • Non-split fins with spring-straps
  • Cutting device
  • Exposure suit appropriate for the duration of exposure
  • Primary light and backup lights
  • Safety spool with minimum 150'/50m of line
  • Three jump spools per diver, each with a minimum of 100'/30m of line
  • Line marker kit with at least 10 directional and 10 non-directional markers
  • Two thigh-mounted pockets
  • Neoprene hood
  • One primary reel per team, with a minimum of 400'/120m of line
  • Optional:  spool with minimum 70’/21m line and a surface marker buoy
  • Optional:  wetnotes and writing utensil

Backmount Equipment Requirements

  • Cylinders: backmount double cylinders
  • Two additional stage bottles
  • At least one decompression bottle
  • Regulator system: primary second stage with a donatable 5’ or 7’ hose stowed in a wrapped fashion around the diver’s neck, and a backup second stage bungeed around the diver’s neck in a necklace fashion
  • Buoyancy compensator/trim device:  rear inflation-type/wing or trim device
  • Backplate and harness system
  • Depth-measuring device
  • Time-keeping device
  • Compass
  • Mask
  • Non-split fins with spring-straps
  • A cutting device
  • Exposure suit appropriate for the duration of exposure
  • Primary light and two backup lights
  • Safety spool with a minimum 150'/50m of line, knotted every 30'/10m
  • Three jump spools per diver, each with a minimum of 100'/30m of line
  • Line marker kit with at least 10 directional and 10 non-directional markers
  • Two thigh-mounted pockets
  • Neoprene hood
  • One primary reel per team, with a minimum of 400'/120m of line

  • Optional:  spool with minimum 70’/21m line and a surface marker buoy
  • Optional:  wetnotes and writing utensil