About us

Welcome to the official website of The Canberra Speleological Society Inc. (CSS)

Latest news:

CSS is 70 years old in 2024!  Not even everyone in the club is that old.. (yet!).  Some festivities are being planned...

For upcoming trips check out the calendar page, using the link on the left.

Here is a little info sheet about the club for prospective members.

2014 was the 60th Anniversary of the Canberra Speleological Society ... you missed the party but can still check out our special 60th Anniversary edition of TVL (the club magazine).

You can now also sometimes find club news on Facebook.

About the CSS

Although not large by world standards the caves near the Australian Capital Territory often exhibit beautiful decoration, contain unusual speleological features and provide a habitat for cave dwelling bats and other fauna. They also provide a source of recreation and research for members of the Canberra Speleological Society Inc. (CSS) which was formed in 1954.

The CSS meets monthly at a venue in central Canberra (this changes from time to time so check the meeting page). You can view information about upcoming caving and other trips on the club Trip Calendar.Interested members of the public are welcome to contact us if they would like to come caving with us.

Club trips are conducted throughout the year, typically with two or three trips per month. Trips are usually conducted within 3 hours drive from Canberra and range from easy walks to small cave areas which are suitable for families, to more advanced cave exploration requiring longer times underground and rope skills. Many caving trips have a conservation focus, with cave cleaning being regularly undertaken in local caves which have suffered from human interaction since their discovery. Other trips involve surveying, and tagging of new cave locations, as the CSS has primary responsibility for these tasks in the ACT region.

In addition to this, each year there is usually one major caving expedition undertaken by interested members to explore caves in remote areas around Australia or overseas. Expeditions that have occurred in the past include trips to the Nullarbor Plain in Western Australia, Thailand, Papua New Guinea and New Zealand.

Though there are a number of publicly accessible caves near Canberra catering for all ages and ability, wild caving is not typically an easy stroll through an underground passage. It may and usually does involve getting extremely muddy or dusty as you crawl and squeeze your way through tight passages, swim in underground river systems, abseil/prussik or ladder down/up cave shafts, or climb about. Your efforts might be rewarded with the sight of fantastically shaped passages and cave decoration such as stalactites, stalagmites, helictites, rimstone pools, shawls and flowstone, which few eyes have set on before. Not to mention the thrill and excitement of possibly discovering a new cave or exploring a passage where nobody has been before - even today new discoveries are being made in local regions.