For our lunch our tour guides recommended Mark Twain Dinette. Food was just okay to me. I liked the root beer though. I heard it was homemade. Afterwards, the four of us headed back to the Cave Complex for our next tour – Mark Twain cave tour. We first watched a 10-minute video about cave formations as well as the history of the cave before our tour guide led us to the cave entrance.
Unlike Cameron cave, Mark Twain cave is equipped with electricity. While it is good in some aspects, especially for those carrying children, I still preferred touring the cave using lanterns/flashlights. It gave me a more primitive and closer-to-nature experience.
Mark Twain cave has several points of interest as well. The ones I liked most and found fascinating were the signed cave walls and Aladdin’s Palace. I couldn’t recall what they call this section of the cave showing names written all over the walls and ceilings. I was just about to ask our tour guide if we could also write our names but she was quick to inform all of us that visitors are no longer allowed to do that ever since the cave became a protected site. It was simply amazing to see how those signatures dating back a hundred years ago were preserved over time.
One creepy story I learned about the cave is that of Joseph Nash McDowell’s use of the cave as his laboratory for his experiments, including his attempt to petrify the remains of his deceased daughter.
At one time, Lydia turned off all the lights in the cave and for a few seconds I couldn’t figure out if my eyes were open or close. It didn’t matter anyway, you wouldn’t tell the difference. It was pitch black in there!
The entire cave facility is at least 250 feet below, with a temperature of 52 degrees Fahrenheit all year round and is surrounded by beautiful woods. Oh, and if you’re a Mark Twain fan, this is the cave that is based on the book Adventures of Tom Sawyer (which I have yet to read. Yeah, shame on me.)
We had a great cave-exploring adventure. Our tour guides (Mark Twain and Cameron caves) were very knowledgeable and friendly. They made everything fun and informative.
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