Va Cave Week

Presented by friends of the Virginia Cave Board

This year we are celebrating Virginia Cave Week
April 22 through 28, 2018


Cave Week Theme

"Let's Explore the Virginia Cave and Karst Trail"

Let's hear it for Virginia Cave Week!

Virginia Cave Week promotes an understanding of Virginia's caves and the surrounding limestone habitats known as karst. Sponsored by the Virginia Cave Board, the week is used to highlight a specific theme related to karst and provide resources and educational opportunities to engage the community in conservation efforts. Educators are encouraged to involve their students using in-class activities and visitation to the state's numerous commercial caves

This Web site is a resource for material related to cave and karst education. Check out the different tabs for information and links having to do with caves, karst-related education, class-room activities, virtual caves, and more. Enjoy.

The Virginia Cave and Karst Trail has more than 20 stops where visitors can learn about and appreciate outstanding caves and karst features. The goal of the trail is to educate people about these sensitive environments and to promote their protection. Most stops are in Virginia's scenic Ridge and Valley Province. Each offers visitors a unique experience such as a fee-based tour, an interpretive program, or a scenic view. A few stops have trails or self-guided tours.

To see more information on Virginia Cave & Karst Trails, please click on this link (which should open in a new tab):

Virginia Cave and Karst Trail Events and Activities

During Virginia Cave Week, you are invited to participate in the following specially scheduled events along the Virginia Cave and Karst Trail.

Sunday, April 22, 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.
Grand Caverns - Grottoes, VA

Dr. Dan Doctor (USGS, Virginia Cave Board) will offer two geologic interpretive tours of Grand Caverns - . Have a question about how the cave formed? Ever wonder what that formation hanging on the wall is called? Interested in knowing more about the Madison Cave Isopod? Want to know what cave drip water can tell us about climate change? Bring your curiosity! The cave management is offering half-price on these tours ($10 adults/$5.50 kids). Going on a cave tour with a geologist will be fun and educational.

Sunday, April 22, 1 p.m.
Skyline Caverns Karst Education Trail Walk - Front Royal, VA

Members of the Front Royal Grotto will host an aboveground walk along the Cave/Karst Education Trail at Skyline Caverns ( ) Learn about the connection between surface karst features and the ground below. Participants will meet in the parking lot at the information kiosk located at the beginning of the trail. For more information, contact Janet Tinkham,, 540-933-6850.

Monday, April 23, 7 p.m.
Wildwood Park Karst Trail Walk and Talk – Radford, VA

THIS ACTIVITY HAS BEEN CANCELLED DUE TO RAINY WEATHER - SORRY.  Wil Orndorff of the Virginia Natural Heritage Program will lead a walk through Radford's Wildwood Park (, discussing the many karst features in the park and the challenges they pose in an urban environment. In addition, participants will get a chance to learn more about the significance of Virginia caves and karst in the New River Valley and beyond. Participants will meet at the trail head. Call 804-786-7951 to register.

Tuesday, May 8, 6 p.m.
Falls Ridge Preserve of the Nature Conservancy – Montgomery County, VA

This activity was previously scheduled for April 24, but has been rescheduled to May 8. Additional sign-ups are still being accepted, and the wildflowers should be in full glory at that time! - Join Wil Orndorff of the Virginia Natural Heritage Program to learn more about the exciting karst landforms at Falls Ridge, which include an 80‑foot-high, travertine-waterfall complex deposited from karst spring waters, small caves, and other karst landforms including sinkholes. This stop on the Virginia Cave and Karst Trail involves moderately difficult hiking of ~3 miles. A shorter loop will also be available concentrating just on the waterfall area starting at 7 p.m.  Call 804-786-7951 to register.

Wednesday, April 25, 7 p.m.
Rockland Park – Front Royal, VA

Join DCR Karst Protection staff for walking tours of the Rockland Park ( ) home to the federally threatened Madison Cave Isopod. Come learn about the isopod, karst landforms, and the steps that citizens, government agencies, and businesses have taken to protect these rare and valuable karst resources. Call 804-786-7951 to register.

Friday, April 27, 6 p.m.
Natural Bridge State Park – Natural Bridge, VA

There will be a free showing of the Catawba Murder Hole video at Natural Bridge State Park. DVDs and books will be on sale, plus lots of free information on caves, bats, and karst. See or the Murder Hole Cave Facebook page for more info about the movie and about Catawba Murder Hole. (Natrual Bridge State Park general info)..

Saturday, April 28, 1 p.m.
Natural Chimneys Karst Trail Vulcan's Forge – Mt. Solon, VA - The Highland County Cave Survey will host a guided walk to look at the karst features that feed the aquifer around Natural Chimneys and recharge the springs along Mossy Creek. Participants will meet at the pavilion at the Natural Chimneys parking lot. For more information contact Rick Lambert,, 540-468-2722

  Va Cave & Karst Trail

Other Activities

In addition to activities during Virginia Cave Week, the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation will host two events the first weekend of May that highlight the beauty and exceptional biodiversity of extreme southwestern Virginia:

Friday, May 4 – Meet at Natural Tunnel State Park - , 8:45 a.m. and join us for a Field Day in Southwestern Virginia to see natural habitats, rare plants, and karst features including a beautiful underground stream.

Saturday, May 5, 9 a.m.  - 4 p.m.  Travel to Jonesville in Lee County and join scientists and conservationists for The Cedars and Powell River Appreciation Day, which will feature a line-up of great speakers presenting fascinating information on the biology of the uplands, underlying caves, and the Powell River -  .  Between speakers you can browse exhibits and talk to other stakeholders while listening to live performers from along the Crooked Road.  The day culminates in an afternoon field trip to see first hand some of these amazing natural resources.

Call 804-786-7951 for more information, or register online at:

Grand Caverns

Grand Caverns - photo by Dave Socky

Catawba Murder Hole

Caatawba Murder Hole - photo by Marian McConnell


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Webmeister: David Socky