Friday, March 24, 2017

3/24 Florida Caverns State Park

I decided to take a break from work today and do some sightseeing.  I've seen a lot of caves in the last five years, but I can't resist the nearby Florida Caverns. 

 

Well, at least there are fewer steps than at Lewis and Clark Caverns, and the walk is not as long as Mammoth Caves.

This is an interesting visitor center made entirely of limestone.  This building was built in the 30s by the CCC or Civilian Conservation Corps, so it is pretty much covered with molds and lichens, which makes it look dark.

And here is a statue of one of the young CCC workers.  They got paid $30 a month, but got to keep only $5 of it as the rest was sent to their families.  That was OK because their housing, food, and clothing was provided by the government.  These workers were responsible for most of the state and national park construction during those years.  Here, they built the buildings and also created the paths through the cave.


This was not the original entrance to the cave.  It was created when part of the cave roof collapsed, so it became the main entrance way back then.


The next few photos are just cave pictures.  The roof was not very high, so I had to do a lot of ducking to avoid hitting my head as I did at Lewis and Clark, a couple of years ago.  Came out of that cave with bumps and bruises on my head! 






While this cave has had some heavy use over the last 90 years, it is still wet, and therefore, still growing.  As you walk under some parts, you even get dripped on by formations such as these "soda straws."


This is something I have not seen in a cave.  It is a pool of very, very still water on a flat area.  There is a sort of rim that formed that keeps the water in, and the whole thing looks like a mirror.



This is another areas of little pools of very still water.  You can see the structures that hold the water in.  It is only a few inches deep, but very clear.  It almost looks like someone had poured in clear plastic because it is so still.  No wind down here to make ripples.




This is the exit, and it also is the result of a cave ceiling collapse, helped a bit by the CCC workers.

It was a nice day today--not too hot or cold, and not too long of a drive here from my campground.  

By the way, always take a small flashlight with you into a cave.  Nearly all allow them, and you can use it to see inside dark areas

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