When my husband told me he wanted to go to ‘Cave in Rock’ State Park, I thought there may be lots of landslides there… Punctuation and emphasis are heavy’s in this phrase. For I took it as ‘Cave-in! Rock!’ or as in ‘the Rock is Caving in’. The true definition is ‘Cave IN Rock’ as in ‘there is a cave in this rock’. I’m not sure where else there may be a cave? Anyone?
Cave-In-Rock in southern Illinois sits atop the high bluffs overlooking the scenic Ohio River and surrounded by the Shawnee National Forest. The heavily wooded park is named for the 55-foot-wide cave that was carved out of the limestone rock by water thousands of years ago.
Here are the limestone walls near the cave and the entrance of the cave. Limestone formations were formed via the glaciers and the nearby Ohio river.
The first European explorer to visit this area was M. de Lery of France, who in 1729 called it ‘caverne dans Le Roc’. The cave was frequently mentioned by later travelers in diaries and journals.
We saw too much graffiti in the cave, whether it be spray paint or carving. So sad. Why do people feel the need to cause such destruction. Leave some rock stack art instead!! It was fascinating tho, that during the year of 2011, many names were added to the ceiling. Yes, that means the water was that high!
All the colorful minerals. There is just a bit of light coming from the nearby crack in the ceiling.
The cave served as a backdrop for a scene in the movie “How The West Was Won”. The scene was a near-accurate portrayal of how, in the 18th and 19th centuries, ruthless bandits used the cave to lure unsuspecting travelers to an untimely end.
In 1929, the State of Illinois acquired 64.5 acres for a park that since has increased to 204 acres. The well-wooded, 60-foot-high hills and the rugged bluffs along the river – commanding expansive views of the famous waterway – became Cave-In-Rock State Park.
Lookin’ out onto the Ohio river.
Holes in the walls have become bird houses.
Petrified wood in the limestone.
All the boys in a nearby alcove, the boys and me at the entrance to the cave.
The light that lights up the main cavern comes from this crack.
Little Oreo has been in rivers, but none as large as the Ohio. When a barge passed and created a few waves at the shore, Oreo didn’t understand and growled and bit at the waves.
© Ilex – Midwestern Plant Girl