Speleology, or caving, is an especially popular sport in West Virginia where some of the highest concentrations of caves in the eastern U.S. are found. Thousands of these caves are only now being discovered and explored. As a result, safety and conservancy are concerns, and several caving organizations have been established to preserve and enhance the caving experience. Most that operate in West Virginia are looking for new members to help catalog sites and fence-off unguarded entrances. With the increased popularity of caving in West Virginia, increased conservancy will be needed.
Based in Fairmont, WV, the Monongahela Grotto of the National Speleological Society was established to promote caving and protect karst regions in northern West Virginia.
Based in northern Virginia, the Potomac Speleological Club and West Virginia-based Potomac Speleological Society are proponents of cave conservation and exploration.
The W.Va. Cave Conservancy was established to protect karst resources, promote their study, provide management resources, and maximize access to caverns.
The Student Grotto at West Virginia University was established to promote safe and responsible caving and further the sport of caving and the scientific study of caves.