We all met at the Marriot off Windy Hill ready for the long drive to McMinnville, Tennessee. I myself felt a little underpacked with my measly little duffel bag when everyone else was carrying a backpack loaded with equipment (tip for next time!) It was a beautiful day weather-wise for the trip; it almost felt like it was early Spring rather than the end of November!
We all left Atlanta right around noon and arrived at the cave what was it? oh I think 3 whole hours early! None of us realized there was a time change between here and there, but that was okay. Since there was only a small convenience store/gift shop within a 15-mile radius we decided to go in town to Applebees and get something to eat. So when the time came for us to begin the trip we were notified that we would be with another group, a group of about 15 or so Cub Scouts and their leaders, which would prove to be an interesting tour.
Upon entering the cave, we got the 1½ hour walking tour. Its a beautifulcave inside with many man made conveniences. They have a huge 2+ ton chandelier hanging from the cave ceiling, a dining room with tables, and even asnack bar, wow! We did see 1 bat on the walking tour which one of thescouts pointed out. After the walking tour it was time for the spelunkingwild tour. This tour lasted about 2 hours and was pretty fun. Thelowest crawlspace was 11 inches high so we had to go through a boxcomparable to the height to see who could and who couldnt do the tour.Luckily everyone in our group made it, with some pulling by others to getthem through! I think everyone had a good time and liked the climbing andmaneuvering and crawling through the tight and funky spaces. After thetour we got some snacks at the snack bar and then went to sleep on thefloor of the cave. The floor was hard and cold and very uncomfortable forthose who didnt bring sleeping pads (ummm like myself). Everyone sleptpretty well, at least I thought so with all the snoring going on aroundme, ha ha! Wake up was at 7:30 a.m. and we got a continental breakfast ofdanishes, cereal, juice, hot chocolate and milk. Then it was back toAtlanta! All in all it was a good trip but everyone in the group waspretty much in agreement that the group of scouts made having fun a bit morechallenging. Our goal for the future is getting our own personal tour, so we can make it extra fun for everyone!
Written By: Stacy Striegel