Jewel Cave National Monument is just a few miles west of Big Pine.
I went on a tour with Rich, Andy and Amy.
After we got our tickets we
had time to
go back to the campground for something warm. Amy decided to
model her new Glacier Sweat Shirt.
From the Gorp
Jewel Cave Page
The exploration of Jewel Cave began about 1900 when two South Dakota
prospectors, Frank and Albert Michaud, and a friend, Charles Bush,
happened to hear wind rushing through a hole in the rocks in Hell
Canyon. Enlarging the hole, they found a cave full of sparkling
crystals. They filed a mining claim on the "Jewel Lode," but they found
no valuable minerals, so they tried turning the cave into a tourist
attraction instead. The business was never a success, but the cave did
attract attention, and in 1908 Jewel Cave National Monument was
established to protect the small but extraordinarily beautiful cave.
Fifty years later exploration of the cave intensified. Led by the
husband-and-wife team of Herb and Jan Conn, modern-day cavers have
discovered new wonders and explored many additional miles of passages.
Today the cave is among the world's longest and is renowned for its
variety of formations.
When we were there, Jewel Cave was the world's 3rd longest.
That night we had dinner with the Fassolds at The Bavarian Restaurant
It was good. The snitzels were huge.