It’s time to go below. Below where it is dark and cool. Below where no light exists unless one brings it along.
At the foothills of the Shenandoah mountains one can find Luray Caverns, in Luray, Virginia. Discovered in 1898, originally known as Luray Cave, these caves are now a National Natural Landmark. Over 500,000 visitors come to enjoy the cool and clean air in the caverns and enjoy geological phenomena with fancy words like Stalactites, Stalagmites, and Speleothem.
Being a limestone cavern, calcium carbonate emits gases that create precipitation of lime. Drips form and create unique shapes over the extensive passing of time. Only one cubic inch accumulates per 120 years, and the caves date back to the Tertiary period, at least 2.6 million years ago.
The majestic beauty of past millennia is truly remarkable. Draperies hang delicately from the ceiling and are translucent in some sections.
In another area, Dream lake truly mystifies the mind. Perfectly pristine and still waters baffles even the keenest eye as it appears bottomless and mirrors the stalactites (from the ceiling) perfectly.
The textures and patterns of the geological formations within the caverns are unique. Fascinating with each swell, drape, drip and drop one can only wonder just how old each formation is.
Perhaps one of the things Luray Caverns is best known for is having the world’s largest musical instrument. The Great Stalacpipe Organ uses thirty-seven stalactites that have been precisely tuned and has been featured on “Ripley’s Believe it or Not.”
Luray Caverns. A truly unique, below the earth’s surface experience that no one should miss if in the Shenandoah Valley area.