GUE Cave 2

Course Outcomes

GUE’s Cave Diver Level 2 course is designed to expand the cave diving skills of experienced Cave 1 trained divers. Among its outcomes are: a focus on environmental awareness, capacity with extended penetration dives, advanced navigation, use of jump spools, enhanced team awareness, advanced problem resolution, stress management and use of a stage bottle. 


Applicants for a Cave 2 course must:

  1. Submit a completed registration form, a medical history, and a liability release to GUE Headquarters.
  2. Be physically and mentally fit.
  3. Hold insurance that will cover diving emergencies such as hyperbaric treatment, e.g. DAN Master-level insurance or equivalent.
  4. Be a nonsmoker.
  5. Obtain a physician’s prior written authorization for the use of prescription drugs, except for birth control, or for any prior medical condition that may pose a risk while diving.
  6. Be a minimum of 18 years of age.
  7. Be GUE Cave 1 certified.
  8. Have a minimum of 25 cave dives beyond Cave Diver 1 certification.


Course Content


The Cave 2 course is normally conducted over five days, requires ten cave dives and involves a minimum 40 hours of instruction, encompassing classroom, land drills and in-water work.

Cave 2 Specific Training Standards

  1. Student-to-instructor ratio is not to exceed 6:1 during land drill or surface exercises, but cannot exceed 3:1 during any overhead diving activity.
  2. Gas consumption: maximum use of 1/3 of gas supply for cave penetration.
  3. No training dives are to exceed a depth of 100 feet/30 meters.
  4. Minimum 20 feet/6 meters of visibility to enter a cave.
  5. Minimum 150 cubic feet/4000 liters of gas necessary to begin a Cave 2 dive.
  6. No scooter diving.
  7. Training must be conducted over a minimum of three different diving locations. During flood conditions this requirement can be modified with the prior consent of the GUE HQ.


Training Materials

GUE training materials and recommended reading as determined by the course study packet received via online download after GUE course registration.


Academic Topics

  1. Introduction: GUE organization and course overview (objectives, limits, expectations)
  2. Guideline use, including the use of a jump spool
  3. Dive team order and protocols
  4. Touch contact
  5. Advanced navigation
  6. Advanced dive planning
  7. Gas management with thirds and while using a stage bottle
  8. Accident analysis
  9. Stress management
  10. Environmental considerations
  11. Communication
  12. Cave restrictions
  13. Basic survey techniques
  14. Decompression


Land Drills and Topics

  1. Guideline use and procedures, including use of a jump spool
  2. Missing diver procedures
  3. Lost guideline procedures
  4. Basic and advanced navigation skills, including gaps/jumps, circuits, and traverses
  5. Visual referencing skills


Required Dive Skills and Drills

  1. Demonstrate proficiency in safe diving techniques; this would include pre-dive preparations, in-water activity and post-dive assessment.
  2. Demonstrate awareness of team member location and concern for safety, responding quickly to visual indications and dive partner needs.
  3. Demonstrate a safe and responsible demeanor throughout all training.
  4. Demonstrate proficiency in underwater communication.
  5. Demonstrate basic proficiency managing a GUE equipment configuration.
  6. Demonstrate safe ascent and descent procedures.
  7. Must be able to swim at least 500 yards/450 meters in less than 14 minutes without stopping. This test should be conducted in a swimsuit and, where necessary, appropriate thermal protection.
  8. Must be able to swim a distance of at least 60 feet/18 meters on a breath hold while submerged.
  9. Demonstrate proficiency in managing breathing system failures, including proper assessment and valve manipulation with regulator switching as appropriate.
  10. Demonstrate proficiency during gas sharing scenarios.
  11. Demonstrate proficiency in cave navigation to include: visual reference, guideline use, limited and simulated zero visibility.
  12. Demonstrate a comfortable demeanor while operating without a mask.
  13. Comfortably demonstrate at least three propulsion techniques that would be appropriate in delicate and/or silty environments; one of these kicks must be the backward kick.
  14. Demonstrate proficiency in the use of touch contact for limited and simulated zero-visibility situations.
  15. Demonstrate the efficient deployment of a reserve light.
  16. Demonstrate the ability to search for a missing diver while performing a simulated missing diver drill.
  17. Demonstrate the skills needed to locate a lost line while performing a simulated lost line drill.
  18. Demonstrate capacity with advanced navigation by completing at least two jumps and by planning a circuit and/or traverse.
  19. Demonstrate a calm demeanor while sharing gas in simulated zero visibility for a prolonged distance.
  20. Demonstrate the ability to use a stage cylinder during extended penetration cave dives.
  21. Demonstrate good buoyancy and trim, i.e. approximate reference is a maximum of 20 degrees off horizontal while remaining within 3 feet/1 meter of a target depth. 
  22. Demonstrate diver rescue techniques, including effective management of unconscious diver.


Equipment Requirements


GUE base configuration as outlined in Appendix A, plus:

  1. GUE double tank configuration
  2. Primary and back-up lights
  3. One bottom stage
  4. One back-up mask
  5. One decompression stage
  6. One primary reel per team
  7. One safety spool with 150 feet/45 meters per person
  8. At least two jump spools per person
  9. At least 12 line markers; six directional and six non-directional

Explore GUE Standards

Prior to the commencement of class, students should consult with a GUE representative to verify equipment requirements and appropriateness of any selected equipment.