Go Underground

Top 10 Caverns Across Our Nation

Lets set aside our claustrophobia issues and step inside the caves of the United States. 

1.  Ape Cave, Washington

This cave is a lava tube located in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest and its passageway is the longest continual lava tube in the continental US and the third longest lava tube in North America. 
Definition of lava tube: a natural conduit formed by flowing lava which moves beneath the hardened surface of a lava flow. 

2.  Moaning Cavern, California
Moaning Cavern is a solutional cave located in the heart of gold country and is developed in marble.  Not only that but it is an archeological site where some of the oldest human remains in America have been discovered. 
Definition of solutional cave: a cave usually formed in the soluble rock limestone.  It is the most frequently occurring type of cave.  It can also form in other rocks including chalk, dolomite, marble, salt beds, and gypsum.  

3. Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico

Carlsbad Caverns is a national park that preserves a portion of the Capitan Reef, one of the best preserved, exposed Permian-age fossil reefs in the world.  The ocean fossils that have been found here paint a picture for archeologist of a shallow inland sea that existed between 240-280 million years ago.  Water, geological forces, climactic changes, and time have created and changed the fossil reef into what it is today.

4.  Jewel Cave, South Dakota

This cave is ranked as third longest in the world and second longest in the United States.  It boast a variety of rock formations like stalagmites, stalactites, draperies, frostwork, flowstone, boxwork and hydromagnesite balloons.  

5.  Niagara Cave, Minnesota

Here is the mid-west’s largest limestone cavern and it is carved out by underground streams, some of which tumble for 60 feet – hence the name Niagara Cave.  Also, in places the ceiling reaches over 100 feet high and showcases deep canyons and gorges creating an awe inspiring view. 

6.  Meremac Caverns, Missouri

These caverns are often referred to as “The Greatest Show Under Earth”  with seven stories that offer a series of natural openings, and 26 miles of underground passages.  Also, inside the cave is a gift shop, a restaurant and 28 flavors of ice cream.  

7.  Caverns of Sonora, Texas

This cavern is a complex labyrinth of sparkling speletherms – the floors, walls, and ceilings are completely covered making it look like the inside of a crystal lined geode!  It has been said that the beauty of these caves cannot be exaggerated.

8.  Polar Caves, New Hampshire

These caves were formed around 50,000 years ago as the third continental glacier passed over New Hampshire’s White Mountains.  When the glacier retreated it left behind an amazing series of caves marked by quartz veins, mineral deposits and canyons. 

9.  Luray Caverns, Virginia

Inside you will find something you won’t find in any other cavern in the world – an organ made out of stalactites.  Engineer and organist Leland Sprinkle carefully tuned 37 stalactites and installed rubber tipped mallets alongside of them so when he plays the organ the mallets tap the rocks, producing beautiful bell like tones.  The Guinness Book of World Records recognizes it as the largest natural musical instrument.  

10.  Mammoth Cave, Kentucky

Welcome to the largest cave in the world!  Stretching over 350 miles and 379 feet deep no wonder other caves cannot compete!  It also contains over 50 species of cave creatures that marked the cave as a national park in 1941 and a World Heritage Site in 1981.

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Contact United Military Travel to book your visit to any of these fantastic caverns!

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