Cave of the Mounds
Cave of the Mounds takes its name from the Blue Mounds, two large hills which have long been Wisconsin landmark features. The West Mound, at 1716 feet, is the highest point in Southern Wisconsin; the East Mound reaches 1489 feet. Cave of the Mounds lies under the southern slope of the East Mound.
This area was settled by Ebenezer Brigham, a successful lead miner who became Dane County's first permanent white settler in 1828. The West Mound is now a Wisconsin state park; part of the East Mound still belongs to the Brigham family. Brigham County Park lies along the wooded northern edge of this East Mound. Both parks afford magnificent vistas of southern Wisconsin.
Cave of the Mounds was accidentally discovered on August 4, 1939. Workers, who were removing high quality limestone from a quarry on the Brigham Farm, blasted into the Cave. The blast tore the face off the quarry and revealed a great underground cavern. All quarrying stopped and never resumed. The dynamite blast revealed a limestone cave more than twenty feet high opening into other rooms and galleries, all containing numerous mineral formations.
Millions of visitors later, the Cave's wooden walkways were replaced with concrete; a large stone building replaced the original entry building; and theatrical lighting has been installed to dramatize the colors and shapes within the Cave. Picnic areas, walking trails, rock gardens, gift shops and a visitor center have all since been developed. Come help us celebrate 75 years during our annual Discovery Days!
Terrific place to take the kids. Tour is about an hour long, there's a tour every half hour. 15-20 people per tour and they do sell out. There is a short film about the history of the caves at the beginning of the tour. The floor is paved and all the stairs gave hand rails. The floor is a little wet, but that's to be expected. The sights are pretty cool.
What a beautiful cave! Our family has visited throughout the years and we took our grandchildren for the first time. They loved seeing a cave and would like to go back someday soon. The tour guide, Matt, was very informative & kept the tour upbeat & fun.
The best cave visit ever and I have visited five. Guides took their time, answered questions, allowed photo opportunities. Knowledgeable about geology and formation of cave, pointing out minerals. Gift shop featured rocks and minerals mounted or jewelery. High quality large display samples. This place rocks literally!
How could this place BE any cooler?! We were on the last tour of the day on a Friday, so there were only 6 of us and the tour guide. Beer is available for consumption before or after your tour (depending on what time you get there) which was a nice bonus since we were thirsty tourists. The cave itself is just awesome, and our guide was enthusiastic and funny. We'll be back!
Wonderful time there with family, including a two year old. The hour-long tour was long enough for the adults to enjoy, but short and fun enough to keep the toddler interested and happy the whole time. We look forward to going back!