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A trip to 2 Virginia Caves

Luray Caverns

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A visit to two Caves in mid-state Virginia
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A Drive through the VA mountains
Skyline Caverns
Luray Caverns
Antique Car Museum
About an hour South-South-West of DC (and about an hour south of the Skyline Caverns) was a small set of buildings including the Luray Caverns enterance, and an Antique Car Museum.
This was probably not an idle boast. This cavern complex took over an hour to walk. In comparison, the Skyine Caverns was about 1/4 as big, with fewer rooms and took about 30 minutes.
Above the Cavern was constructed a medical asylum that included the first air conditioned house in the US. A shaft was cut down to the caverns and air was blown up by a fan into the house. This are, not only a constant cool 65 dF year round, was also tested to be very clean and free from microbes.
Looking down into an open area from a walkway that was up one side of the room.
Note the sign to the right to get scale. (It was about a foot square)
A good shot to show the typical scale of the rooms.
This was typical of one of several pools of water. The image you see is mostly the water's reflection of the celiling above it. The water here never gets deeper than 6", but looks like 10' or more!
More of the water reflecting the ceiling. Again, the water is only about 6" deep, with a flat bottom. But the water is so clear, and so undisturbed that the reflections were hard to knotice even while standing next to it.
Here is a shot with the flash forced-on. Still, the reflections seem to overcome the true image.
Back to the tour.
Some times it is hard to tell when sorting these pictures if I had the camera tilted. Which side of the picture is up! (You have to look for the tiny stalagties, hanging down). Remember: Stalagtites "Hang tight to the roof" and Stalagmights "Might make it to the roof"
This formation was the oldest in the cavern. Several hundreds of millions of years old.
For scale, look at the walkway handrail in the background.
Agan, see the walkway down low.
Probably one of the most interesting pieces, in the center is a stalagtite that had broken off from the roof several tens of thousands of years ago, during a seismic event. See the flat top to the right, tapering to the left to where it landed against a different stalagmight and then grew together?
More shots, with people in them for scale.
The "Ice Cream Cone"
Click on this link about to read more about the Organ that uses the Cave's rocks to generate music.
"THE GREAT STALACPIPE ORGAN - Dedicated June 7, 1957 - INVENTOR Leland W. Sprinkle, Sr. - Springfield, Virginia ..."
Click to see one of the rocks and how it was wired.
The Wishing Well pool. The only place in the caverns were people could toss coins in for good luck. Hundreds of thousands of dollars have been retrieved and donated to charities, averaging about $30,000 a year.
The fameous "Fried Eggs" formation. (life sized)
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