A couple of weekends ago, we took our kids on a fall drive through beautiful Pennsylvania countryside to Crystal Cave. Audrey and Georgia are always up for an adventure, so they were excited. And Joel just likes to be with his family. Sydney loves rocks and has a collection (of broken bits of concrete), so she was excited to go, as well.
Although when we drove up to the visitor’s center, she asked if it was a bear’s cave…
We were surprised to find out that we were visiting on the 140th anniversary of the discovery of the cave in 1871. Before entering the cave, we watched a short movie that talked about how caves were formed and a little about the cave’s history.
When visiting Crystal Cave, you are required to go with a tour guide. Nobody is allowed to touch any of the rock formations in the cave, as the oils on our skin would harm the ever-growing rock. The girls are old enough to keep their hands to themselves, and we had to carry Joel, so his grubby hands weren’t touching anything. (The cave is not wheelchair- or stroller-accessible.)
The 40-minute tour was very interesting. We saw all different rock formations (which all have names I don’t remember) and at one point the guide turned off all the lights so we could experience what it would’ve been like for the farmers who discovered the cave. It was beyond dark. All we could hear was the drip-drip-dripping of the water. (And the fuss-fuss-fussing of Joel and the other baby who was with us. We left the pacifier in the car…)
The three girls (and kids in the two other families we were with) loved the cave. After the tour, we went back to the gift shop where they all picked out some cool rocks to take home. Sydney’s rock collection is exponentially better now!