The more I get out and do things, the more I appreciate the State I live in. There is a book in circulation I came across once called Weird California, and it had page after page of crazy sights, monuments, people, wonders, etc. and at one point I saw a page about the California Caverns. Caves to me seemed like something only found in primitive regions of the Earth… and I guess I don’t even know what that means. But I never considered there would be caves in my neighborhood, so I thought taking the time to check one out would be well worth it (#58).
The California Caverns are out somewhere past Amador County / Angels Camp. I know what you’re all thinking…. why drive past all my favorite wineries only to decend a few hundred feet into a smelly old cave?? It was tempting, for sure, to throw in the towel halfway in to the drive and wine taste instead, but…. I had to be reasonable. Important to note: my friend Leslie, who is the ultimate spontaneous and fun-seeking friend I have, came along for the adventure- in fact she has joined me for other bucket list items that I sadly did not get pictures of her with me! Leslie’s energy and enthusiasm is infectious. I loved having her has a co-worker because when we got together with our ideas the classroom would become Pinterest on Crack.
Anyway, we made the drive out (1 1/2 hours) to the Moaning Cavern. Open year round everyday and reasonably priced, it offers several different options to descend into the cave accompanied by a proficient tour guide. It was FASCINATING! We opted for the stairway to Hell, vs. rope propelling/ zip lining/ watersliding. Largely because Holly wasn’t quite up to the physical skill level needed. Natalie on the other hand was a tad bummed she couldn’t do the “rope swing.”
Some images from inside the caves….
Granted, it was a little difficult figuring out the best settings for taking pictures in a cave, and at one point the tour guide turned off the lights completely so we could see just how NO light could get in whatsoever. Great place for a Haunted Halloween party! Or Hide-n-Go-Seek in the dark.
But yes, very family friendly and I didn’t think too bad when it comes to a workout (only 400+ steps on the stairs), claustrophobia, and fear of heights. We might go again when the girls are much older…. thank you Leslie for being awesome company!