29 5th-7th grade students explored CaveSim today from 11:45AM-1:45PM, and enjoyed bat games, carbide demonstrations, and practiced their cave rescue skills. Many Atlas Prep students qualify for free or reduced price lunch, so our program was completely free, thanks to donations from Barbara Bentzin, Bob Montomery, and Dick Blenz.
For the third consecutive year, K-6th grade students had a great time exploring CaveSim at on their last day of the school year at Cresson Elementary School.
120 6th grade students explored CaveSim, learned geology from caver Jesse Rochette, practiced cave rescue with our Sked, learned electronics with our cave rescue phones (and an HP oscilloscope!), and played in the squeezebox. A huge thank-you to Pat Malone for helping kids put on helmets and knee pads, and another huge thank-you to Margaret Browne, 6th grade teacher, for helping us set up and for working with us throughout the day.
Students getting suited up to explore CaveSim. Photo by Dave Jackson.
Many things happen at once at CaveSim. At left, several boys watch the computer monitors to see how well their classmates are doing in the cave (the monitors show “damage” points for each cave formation, and also show live night-vision camera feeds of the inside of the cave). At right, students use the squeezebox to see how tight a space they can fit through. Photo by Dave Jackson.
This great free public event from 9AM-3PM was more popular this year than ever before, with over 600 people attending. CaveSim was a very popular activity for both kids and adults.
Several hundred elementary school students enjoyed CaveSim during the final STEM Night of the school year at Abrams Elementary School from 4-6PM. We also had parents and some teachers explore the mobile cave.
About 50 cavers, SAR personnel, firefighters and others converged on the El Paso County SAR facility for an Orientation to Cave Rescue (OCR). This two-day course was organized by the Colorado Cave Rescue Network (CCRN), with instruction provided by CCRN and National Cave Rescue Commission instructors. The course had three parts: lectures, hands-on practice above ground, and a mock rescue in a real cave. CaveSim was used during the hands-on practice to give participants a sense of what real caving is like. This gave participants the chance to learn just how fragile the cave environment is prior to entering a real cave for the mock rescue. Some participants had never been in a cave before, and learned a lot about what kind of gear is appropriate for the cave environment.
Above, participants practice packaging a patient in a Sked stretcher. Below, the CaveSim trailer fit well in the El Paso County Search and Rescue building. We had a late snowstorm which explains the water below the trailer. Photos by Dave Jackson.
What a great way to spend Spring Break! 50 children (and some teachers and parents) explored CaveSim during our second trip to the US Air Force Academy Youth Center. A huge thank-you to Mr. Dick Blenz for sponsoring this event!
All three of these USAFA Youth Center staff members (including Kyla, center, who arranged our visit) had a great time exploring CaveSim. Photo by Dave Jackson.
This great event on Fort Carson kept us very busy with CaveSim — over 700 people attended, and several hundred went through CaveSim in just 1.5 hours!
A soldier explores CaveSim during the Patriot Elementary STEM night on Fort Carson. Photo by Tracy Jackson.
About 46 5th grade students (and their teachers!) explored CaveSim at Legacy Academy in Elizabeth, CO during a 3 hour program. The students did hands-on geology lessons, role-played the lives of bats, practiced cave rescue with a real stretcher, and helped with carbide lamp demonstrations. The students are studying ecosystems, so they enjoyed discovering and talking about all of the (artificial) cave life that we have inside CaveSim.
Above: Exploring CaveSim using one of the lights donated to us by ElSpeleo. Thanks!
Below: Having fun in the squeezebox. Photos by Chris Aaby, Catamount Institute.
We had a crowd of cavers exploring CaveSim and competing for most-careful-caver for two days at TCR 2015. Photo by Dave Jackson.
TCR is an event not to miss! If you didn’t make it this year, come on down to the San Antonio area next year for this great multi-day event.
What a great museum! We had so many kids explore and enjoy CaveSim.
Dave traded his cowboy hat for a helmet at the CoolScience Carnival at UCCS. Photo by Jackson Fulcher.
This young woman can’t use her legs, but she bravely explored the entire CaveSim trailer at the What IF Festival. Photo by Andy Riter.
Adam and his friends had a great time celebrating his eighth birthday at CaveSim.
Several thousand people showed up for this public event (tickets required) in Lone Tree (south Denver) from 1-7PM. CaveSim was very popular and we kept busy all day. There was great food, drink, and vendors, too.
Left: A girl explores CaveSim with one of our new lights donated by ElSpeleo. Right: Boys watching carefully to make sure they don’t hit the formations. Photos by Erik Mattson.
Kids learning about cave paintings from Dave. Photo by Erik Mattson