GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colo. (CBS4) – A natural wonder is now open to the public for the very first time.
A series of caverns in Glenwood Springs were actually discovered decades ago, but it wasn’t until now that the public is actually able to get inside them.
People have been exploring the caves in Glenwood Springs for more than a century, and there have been tours through a limited section of the caves. But starting this weekend the Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park is opening a whole new tour.
“I say new because obviously the cave has been around for millions of years, however it’s the first time the general public is going to be able to come in and see this section of cave,” Nancy Heard with Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park said. “We’re about 150 feet deep. Now that may seem like a lot, it may not seem like you’ve come that far down, but the mountain is growing up around us.”
Most of the new rooms were discovered decades ago, but in order to see the beautiful formations inside it took lengthy work.
“We can’t even estimate how many tons of rubble we’ve taken out of here,” Heard said.
It took about a year and a half of blasting and mucking, actually taking rock out by hand for crews to create three new tunnels and complete a loop.
“They would blast a little bit and then take some shovels and some picks,” Heard said.
It was hard work to get to some amazing calcite deposits.
“We won’t see much growth in our lifetime. They grow 1,000 years for a cubic inch of formation.”
The cave goes on for another 10 miles, but park officials say it will be a while before the public ventures that far in. The hour long, roughly 1,500 foot tour, will suffice Coloradans for now.
The first public tours started Saturday.