Named for its underground wonders, Florida Caverns State Park provides access to the state's only air-filled limestone cave system. This lil gem is tucked away in the Florida panhandle, a region famous for its Karst topography, in which the limestone bedrock is eaten away by the slight acidity of groundwater. This process then creates caves, which can eventually collapse into sinkholes. Further progression of the Karst model can produce another style of caves wherein the water seeps through bedrock and widens fissures over time causing a hollowing out. Additional seepage of groundwater into the created cave space then deposits minerals in the forms of stalagmites, stalactites, draperies, and all things metal and cavelike.
Upon first walking down the steps into the cave, you can feel the temperature change to a cool 65 degrees (maintained year round). The view is dazzling, to say the least - with all shapes and sizes of formations growing in slow accumulation just underneath the earths surface. We explored the cave complex with a tour guide for a good 45 minutes and I got to snap a few photos while i was at it. No bat sightings unfortunately.
After our cave exploration, we hiked the trails in the bluff area that travels through Chiploa River floodplains and upland hardwood forest. The bluff area acts as a buffer zone between the saturated floodplain environment and the dry pine forests of the hills. The flora and fauna of this area was incredible. While you are here, be sure arouse the senses with the purity of both under and above ground wonders. Maidenhair, Comlumbine, Oak Leaf Hydrangea, Ruellia, Silphium, Southern Wood Ferns, Ebony Jewelwing Damselflies were just a few of the native flora & fauna that had me mesmerized. Gotta luv us some FL.