Longhorn

Note: All photographs on this page where taken with my Minolta X700, 50 mm lens and NO TRIPOD!

 

 

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    Longhorn caverns has been in use for many years and is rich with history. The first people to use the cave were the Comanche Indians, who used a chamber, in the cave, as a council site. In the 1800's Sam Bass, an outlaw, made his hideout in the cave. 

     During the Civil War, the Confederate Army used the cave as a secret place for 

gun powder manufacturing and storage. The cave was also used as a dance hall and a place of worship by a local church. Finally in the 1930's the cave was opened for tours.

     The cave entrance is very near the ticket building. A short walk down a flight of stairs, pictured at right, and one finds themselves at the cave entrance. The tour guide meets

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 the group at the gate to begin the tour. 

     Once inside the cave the evidence of geological processes shows one that an  underground river once flowed through the area creating smoothly carved limestone. Interesting enough, where other show caves in Texas are in Cretaceous limestone,

 Longhorn is in Paleozoic limestone. 

     This cave is filled with walls covered with calcite crystals. Some of the crystals are quite large and beautiful.  

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     An unexpected treat for me and my sister was finding two Trogloxenes. These are cave creatures, which occasionally leave the cave. These particular trogloxenes we viewed are called 'cave crickets'. This creatures are in fact grasshoppers, not crickets, but fascinating nonetheless. Cave animals have a name all to them selves, Cavernicoles. 
     Another treasure of the cave was that parts where still active. Although this cave was primarily formed from an underground river, there are areas that have the more typical formations expected in caves, stalactites and stalagmites. Back in the area where the gun powder was stored I found this drop. Evidence of the slow process of cave formation was right within my grasp. Of course I didn't dare touch the formation, in fear of stopping that particular growth with oil from my fingers, but I couldn't resist a picture. The photography was difficult because I was not allowed to take in my tripod. All the photographs on this page were hand-held.

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 More at Longhorn Caverns Official Website 


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