1997 Karst and Cave Management Symposium Logo



Highlighting Forest Karst Ecosystems

October 7-10, 1997, Bellingham, Washington, U.S.A

HOSTS: National Speleological Society American Cave Conservation Association Cave Research Foundation The Karst Waters Institute National Caves AssociationThe Nature ConservancyU. S. Forest Service U. S. National Park Service U.S. Bureau of Land Management U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service CO-SPONSORS: British Columbia Speleological Federation British Columbia Ministry of Forests Northwest Caving Association Oregon Grotto of the NSS Northwest Chapter of the ACCA Northwest Cave Research Institute BC Parks Bat Conservation International Washington Dept. of Fish and Wildlife Richmond Area Speleological Society Western Forest Products Limited    Terra Associates      MacMillan Bloedel Limited    Canadian Forest Products Limited    The Record , Gold River

Home Page

Sponsor Links

First Announcement

Call for Papers


About the Area

About Local Karst


Second Announcement

  Abstracts | Biographies



About Local Karst and Caves

Under Construction

Map of VI

Vancouver Island, the largest of North American's offshore islands, has an area of some 32,100 square kilometers. Almost 4% of this surface area, or 1,200 km2, is karst. This represents just over 0.1% of the total carbonate rock surface in Canada or 1,200,000 km2 (about the same as China).

The caves of Vancouver Island are comparatively well developed due to high rainfall, dense vegetation, soil cover, and mountainous topography. There are more explored limestone caves here than in all other Canadian provinces combined. Vancouver Island is so rich in caves, with more than 1,000 recorded [as of 1991], that it sometimes referred to as the "Island of Caves". Some of the problems of karst management were described in a recent article in Watershed Sentinel. There is also a Web page devoted to Karst Management Issues on the Island.

Field Trips


A Pre-Symposium trip will be made available in the Tongass National Forest. You'll have to get there on your own, and then get back to Bellingham You can easily do this, however, by detouring via Ketchikan on your way to the Symposium. More information coming soon.

North Island

This is our Primary Field trip. We'll fly you to the north end of Vancouver Island, and haul you around in busses on a 5 hour visit to karst management sites in the midst of currently and formerly forested areas. We're going to have to charge extra for this trip to cover the cost of the air-fare. We'll have some other activities and field trips going on if you don't want to go to the island.


Located on the Mainland, just north of the Canadian Border, the Chilliwack Mountains have several major karst areas within. More information coming soon.

Mt. St. Helens

After the Symposium, Jim Nieland will lead a trip to Mt. St. Helens and its caves. More details coming up.

Return to Home