West Virginia Speleological Survey (W.Va.S.S.)

WVASS was founded by Roger Baroody (NSS 4871F) in 1967.  Rogers intent was to have an organization that would continue the survey begun by William E. Davies in Caverns of West Virginia and its supplements, which appeared up until 1965.  When it appeared that the West Virginia Geological Survey would not publish further updates to Davies's book, even though large quantities of new data were becoming available, the need for some sort of continuing survey to gather information about West Virginia's caves and karst became apparent.
WVASS is as unorganized an organization as is possible to have and still get things done.  WVASS is basically a voluntary association of cavers and caving groups, each of which pursues its own interests.  We have participants, but no members.  Initially there was no constitution, no dues, and few rules.  There is cooperation because we have a common desire: to gather and maintain information about West Virginia caves and karst.  WVASS is run by an informal coalition of directors; i.e., individuals who have taken the responsibility of organizing county or area cave surveys or who have done substantial karst and cave research in West Virginia.  Meetings are informally held about 2 times a year, generally to discuss the progress of various reports, how they will be funded and published.  A list of participating organizations and directors is given on other pages of this web site.  The list is completely unofficial and will probably insult some people by leaving them out and others by including them. In 1978, WVASS became a Study Group of the NSS, with the stated objective of compiling and, where appropriate, publishing information about West Virginia caves and karst.  Then in 1987, WVASS was granted 501c3 tax exempt status by the IRS which means we can accept donations of money and property for which the donor may take a tax deduction .
The physical output of WVASS is a series of publications, 15 of which have been published to date.  From the beginning, we've tried to maintain a balance between bulletins that give cave descriptions and those reporting on specific karst research.  So far, 4 bulletins have been of the former type and 11 of the later.  The cave survey bulletins have, so far, provided descriptions of over 2175 caves in 14 West Virginia counties.  The non-cave survey bulletins consist of a master's thesis on cave development, a bibliography of West Virginia caves and karst, and bulletins on the invertebrate and vertebrate fauna of West Virginia caves.  A complete list of publications can be found on other pages of this web site.  It is the policy of WVASS to sell bulletins only to NSS members and individuals and agencies doing karst research or those having some specific need for the information.Beginning with the first bulletin in 1971, WVASS has published over 3000 pages of information funded primarily out of the pockets of individual directors, a few grants, and loans from other caving organizations.  To date we've invested more than $95,000 of our own  money in the bulletins.  Of course we reveive money back through sales, but there is still a risk involved, especially when we publish a bulletin we know won't sell in volume but which we feel should be published.  The bibliography is such an example.  When we do published we exercise some discretion about what gets printed.  Certain caves contain unique speleothems, rare forms of cave life, or have serious landowner-caver relations problems.  For these caves, we may choose not to publish anything.  This a a value judgment that many cavers have to make at some point.  We would rather be accused of being secretive for writing about some caves and not others, than to write about all of them and perhaps loose those things which make the caves of value.  We do make an effort to be as open as possible with the information we gather and to share it with others having a mutual interest in the caves involved.  What is important to us is not that we publish a lot of material about caves, but that the material that exists is not lost and can be kept for use by researchers and the caving community.
Future Work
Progress in the West Virginia Speleological Survey is continuing at a steady pace.  In addition to the 15 bulletins published, a dozen other bulletins are in various stages of research and production.  We have enough work to keep us busy for many years to come.  Our biggest problem, as with many enterprises, is money.  It costs us close to $15,000 to publish a 175-200 page bulletin.  This represents a substantial outlay for most of us and is a real constraint to putting bulletins out more rapidly.  It takes  about two years to recover the money from sales, if the bulletin sells well.  Bulletin 3, the bibliography, took 10 years to pay for itself.  All profit from sales goes to publish future bulletins.  No one is paid a salary or makes any money, or is reimbursed for their caving expenses.  We have no publication schedule.  Bulletins get published when the compiler is ready and when the money is available.  We will continue to publish because the information is in demand and has proven to be useful to researchers and the caving community .

West Virginia Speleological Survey
Publications on West Virginia Caves And Karst
For Sale

Caves of Randolph County by Doug Medville, 1971. 218 pages,over 200 caves described.
OUT OF PRINT Photo Copy $21.00 Postpaid
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Development of Solution Features Cloverlick Valley, Pocahontas County by Eb Werner, 1972. 62 pages.  A discussion of the geology and geomorphology of karst features in Cloverlick Valley.
OUT OF PRINT Photo Copy $13.00 Postpaid
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Index of the Literature Pertaining to West Virginia Caves and Karst by Eb Werner, 1974. 155 pages.  A very useful aid in locating information about caves and karst in West Virginia.
$6.00 Postpaid
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Caves of Monroe County by John C. Hempel, 1975.  171 pages describing 210 caves.
OUT OF PRINT Photo Copy $19.00 Postpaid
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Caves of North Central West Virginia by E. Ray & Mary Ellen Garton, 1976. 116 pages describing 111 caves in 7 counties.
OUT OF PRINT Photo Copy $17.00 Postpaid
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Caves and Karst Hydrology in Northern Pocahontas County by Doug & Hazel Medville, 1976.  174 pages describing over 300 caves. See Bulletin 10.
OUT OF PRINT Photo Copy $19.00 Postpaid
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The Invertebrate Cave Fauna of West Virginia by John R. Holsinger, Roger A. Baroody & David C. Culver, 1976.  86 pages.
OUT OF PRINT Photo Copy $11.00 Postpaid
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Caves of the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia by Robert Gulden & Mark Johnson, 1985.  135 pages describing 89 caves in 3 counties.
OUT OF PRINT Photo Copy $15.00 Postpaid
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Caves of the Organ Cave Plateau, Greenbrier County, West Virginia, edited by Paul J. Stevens, 1988.  Over 70 pages devoted to Organ Cave, the second longest in West Virginia, 37+ miles.  At 100 feet to the inch the map of the system covers 80 pages.  Also included are descriptions of 50 other caves on the Organ Cave Plateau. 200 pages.
Out of Print - Photo Copy $25.00 Postpaid
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Caves and Karst Hydrology of Southern Pocahontas County and the Upper Spring Creek Valley by Gary D. Storrick, 1992.  220 pages, 428 caves including 43+ mile Friars Hole System. 100 maps, 30 photos, 30 fold-out maps including Friars Hole at 1"=160'. This is the companion volume to Bulletin 6.
$27.00 Postpaid
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The Vertebrate Fauna of West Virginia Caves by E. Ray Garton, Fredrick Grady & Steven D. Carey, 1993.  100 pages describing and listing the living vertebrates reported from WV caves.  Lists over 550 records for 57 species in over 220 caves. 5 color plates, 3 B/W plates.
$15.00 Postpaid
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The Caves and Karst of Buckeye Creek Basin by George R. Dasher and William M. Balfour, 1994.  238 page, 80 photos, 4 color plates, 62 illustrations, 35 cave maps including 4 foldouts, with descriptions of 116 caves including the 5+ mile Buckeye Creek Cave System.
$19.00 Postpaid
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Caves and Karst of Randolph by Doug & Hazel Medville, 1995. Completely revised and updated to replace Bulletin 1. Describes 520 caves, 41 photos, with 150 maps, (11 foldout) including first ever full map of Simmons Mingo Cave, 252 pages.
$26.00 Postpaid
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Caves of East-Central West Virginia--The Guidebook of the National Speleological Society’s 2000 Convention, Elkins, West Virginia. Edited by George R. Dasher, May 2000. Contains 60+ cave descriptions plus maps including 20 large fold-out maps in separate map packet. Also includes interviews with well known cavers of the region, detailed geology, hydrology, paleontology, biology and field trips. 300 pages.
$28.00 Postpaid
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Caves and Karst of Pendleton County; George Dasher, 2001. 404 pages describing 326 caves with 172 cave maps, 23 as fold outs, with 202 photos.
$45.00 Postpaid
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Caves in the Richlands Area of Greenbrier County, West Virginia edited by Bert Ashbrook, 1995. 48 caves are described in a 4 square mile area , with 25 figures, photos, tables & maps including 4 large foldouts, 37 pages.
$10.00 Postpaid
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Recent Spring Creek Area Dye Tracings, Greenbrier County, West Virginia. By George R. Dasher & Dr. Doug G. Boyer, February 2000. Contains detailed analysis, significance and historical perspective of the karst springs of the Buckeye Creek , Culverson Creek and Spring Creek drainage basins. Loaded with maps, photos and illustrations. 28 pages.
$10.00 postpaid
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PROCEEDINGS of the 1976 N.S.S. Annual Convention, Morgantown, WV. edited by Eb Werner, 1977.  60 pages with 18 papers.
$7.00 Postpaid

PROCEEDINGS of the 1977 N.S.S. Annual Convention, Alpena, MI. edited by Eb Werner, 1979. 90 pages with 16 papers.
$7.00 Postpaid

CAVERNS of West Virginia by William E. Davies, 1965.  474 pages describing over 500 caves.  Hard cover.  Soft cover reprint, 1994.
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CAVERNS of West Virginia by William E. Davies, 1965 supplement. 72 pages describing 194 caves.
$15.00 Postpaid

by William K. Jones, 1997. Special Publication 4 of the Karst Waters Institute. 111 pages describing 22 aspects of the Hydrogeologic Setting in West Virginia including Karst Drainage Basins, Biological Significance of Karst, Land-use Planning for Karst Areas and the results of tracer tests in West Virginia. 11x14 format, dozens of photos, maps and charts.
$39.00 postpaid .

This is the best source of current and on-going information about caving in West Virginia. The West Virginia Caver is published every other month and is official newsletter of the Charleston, ESSO, Monongahela, Monroe County Cavers, Mountain State, Parkersburg Area, Warsaw Underground, WV Association for Cave Studies, GROSS Grotto, and the WV University Student Grottos. Edited by George Dasher each issue is generally 18-20 pages. 124 issues have been published as of 11/01. Make check payable to West Virginia Caver and send to Ken Ashton, PO Box 1496, Morgantown, WV 26507 or email to ashton@geosrv.wvnet.edu.
By subscription $8.00 per year .

HYDROLOGY of Limestone Karst in Greenbrier County, West Virginia (Bulletin 36) by William K. Jones, 1973.  55pages describing several cave systems.
$15.00 Postpaid

LIMESTONES of West Virginia
by J.B. McCue, J.B. Luke & H.P. Woodward, 1939. 560 pages, hard cover.
$20.00 Postpaid

SPRINGS of West Virginia
by Paul H. Price, John B. McCue & Homer A. Hoskins, 1936.  146 pages describing the geology, history and chemistry of 176 springs in West Virginia.
$20.00 Postpaid

SPRINGS of West Virginia 50th Anniversary Revised Edition
by Jane S. McColloch, 1986. 493 pages describing the geology, history and chemistry of 1193 springs in West Virginia. All major karst springs included.
$35.00 Postpaid

PROCEEDINGS of the Fourth Conference on Karst Geology and Hydrology
edited by H.W.Rauch & Eb Werner, 1974. 192 pages, 22 papers, 10 abstracts.
$16.00 Postpaid

STRUCTURAL Contour Map on the Greenbrier Limestone in West Virginia, by O.L. Haught, 1968. 35 X 38 inch map.
$8.00 Postpaid

GROUND-WATER Hydrology of the Potomac River Basin in West Virginia by W.A. Hobba, E.A. Friel, J.K. Chrisholm, 1973. 31 X 45 inch map.
$9.00 Postpaid

KARST Subsidence and Linear Features Map of Greenbrier and Monroe Counties, West Virginia by P. Lessing, S.L. Dean, B.R. Kulander & J.H. Renalds, 1979. 32 X 58 inch map.
$8.00 Postpaid

LIMESTONE Outcrops and Probable Areas Underlain by Rock Salt and Natural Brine in West Virginia.  8.5 X 11 inch map.
$1.34 Postpaid

WV GEOLOGICAL Survey County Geologic Reports and Geologic Maps. All county reports are rare out of print books but our extensive network of resources can generally find most titles within a few days or weeks. All books are hard bound and the accompan ying geologic maps (when available) are in color at a scale of 1:62:500 (1 inch = 1 mile). Titles of interest to cavers include: Greenbrier County, 1939, 846 pages. Pocahontas County, 1929, 531 pages. Randolph County, 1931, 989 pages. Hampshire & Har dy Counties, 1927, 624 pages. Jefferson, Berkeley & Morgan Counties, 1916, 644 pages. Mercer, Monroe & Summers Counties, 1926, 963 pages. Mineral & Grant Counties, 1924, 866 pages. Pendleton County, 1927, 384 pages. Tucker County, 1923, 542 pages.
$30.00-$100.00 each Postpaid

Buyer Must Provide A Valid NSS Number or Grotto Affiliation In Order To Process Your Order All Prices Include Postage

(Call, Fax, or Email Credit Card Orders)
(WV Residents Please Add 6% Sales Tax)
WVASS c/o E. Ray Garton,
Director PO Box 200/600 Saxman Street
Barrackville, WV 26559
304/366-1810 or 366-8019 fax