SPELUNKING THE OZARK CAVES= MERAMEC CAVERNS, ONONDAGA CAVE, CATHEDRAL CAVE, MCCORMICK CAVE, FANTASTIC CAVERNS
The Ozarks have over 6,000 documented caves. Each week-end in July explore rarely visited caves also commercial caves and caverns. All Kayak Dayz members are welcome. You can book your own room or share my motel room with 2 double beds. You are responsible for your own motel, food, tours and transportation. For those of you that are afraid of bumping into a mountain lion or a bear I recommend only doing the commercial caves and caverns.
South of the Missouri River in the Ozarks. The bedrock consists mainly of dolomite, which is made up of calcium magnesium carbonate (CaMg(CO3)2). Natural and man-made acids in the water dissolve many carbonates. This process leads to the creation of sinkholes, caves, springs, losing streams, and other karst features. The Ozarks have some excellent examples of karst. With proper research many of these are along a county road and on National Forest land so angry landowners with shotguns are not a worry for Kayak Dayz member Spelunkers.
After seeing these massive features, you may wonder where all this dissolved rock ends up. Some of it is deposited in cave as stalactites, stalagmites, and other speleothems (cave formations). Much of it just ends up in the groundwater as dissolved minerals. This explains why Rolla has such hard water and why my leaky faucet started growing its own stalactite.
U Tube video= http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p7NTiOMeaYU
July 5th= CATHEDRAL CAVE (commercial cave)=This is a lantern tour that lasts approximately two hours. The tour begins at the campground shower house and includes a short one-third mile walk up Deer Run Trail to the cave's entrance. The cave tour itself lasts about an hour and 30 minutes. The remaining time is spent traveling on the trail to and from the cave entrance. The cave temperature is 57ºF (13ºC). The tour is limited to the first 30 people. It is more strenuous than the Onondaga Cave tour and covers one and two-thirds miles round trip.
July 12th= ONONDAGA CAVE (commercial cave) Trained guides will lead you over electrically lighted paved walkways and provide information about geologic wonders such as the King's Canopy, the Twins, and other unusual speleothems. With an interesting history and a river flowing through the cave, Onondaga Cave is a spectacular registered National Natural Landmark
July 13th= MCCORMICK CAVES (true spelunking) First, as a shelter to native Americans, then as a shelter for naive Americans*, then as a shelter for a seismological station. *during the "cold war" era McCormick cave was converted into a fallout shelter-the "naive Americans" didn't realize that the cave actually offered little protection from radiation.
July 19th= MERAMEC CAVERNS=Missouri's Buried Treasure (did Jesse James really hide an as-yet-to-be-found fortune in Meramec Caverns, in Stanton?),Beneath the fertile rolling hills of the Meramec Valley lays a complex of mineral formations and color as rare and unique as they are beautiful. These jewels of nature which took thousands of years to grow are preserved in the spectacular sights of Meramec Caverns. Learn how an ancient limestone "Wine Table" and an entire 7-story mansion were built... all underground. On tour you will see both the rarest and largest cave formations in the world. Meramec Caverns is the largest commercial cave in the state of Missouri. Missouri is also known as the Cave state, hosting home to more than 6,000 surveyed caves & Onyx Caverns
July 20th= FANTASTIC CAVERNS=America's Only All-Riding Cave Tour. The cave is toured in Jeep-drawn trams. Since you ride all the way, you experience the magnitude, the stillness and the splendor of Fantastic Caverns while preserving its natural features.
The unique tour follows the path of an ancient underground river. Enjoy the beauty of a natural cave without the long walks, stairs or steep climbs.