Ultimate Guide to Kickapoo Cavern State Park, Texas (Tours, Pricing, History, Map)
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Kickapoo Cavern is one of the most popular attractions in Kickapoo Cavern State Park, located just outside of San Antonio, to the East. The cave contains formations that date back to before Texas was even settled by Europeans.
This is a relatively new site in Texas, operating since 2010. It is on the west edge of Texas Hill Country and has many interesting things for visitors. We live on the idea that caves are all about either bats or wonderful geological formations. This cavern will impress all with its natural formations that took millions of years to take shape.
Kickapoo Cavern, Texas
The Kickapoo Cavern has been developed as the Kickapoo Cavern State Park, and it includes around 20 known caves, but only two of them – Kickapoo Cavern and Stuart Bat Cave – are large enough to be significant. The cavern has 14 miles of mountain biking trails and 18 miles of hiking trails.
History of the Cavern
Kickapoo Indians once occupied the Kickapoo Caverns State Park, and the caverns have records of 4 million years of nature’s handiwork. The Kickapoo people migrated to the borderlands of Texas and Mexico, and it is one of the remarkable odysseys of North American history.
The Kickapoo tribe was originally from the eastern reaches of the US, and they were known to be fiercely independent. Most Kickapoo people fled to Mexico and refrained from surrendering to the encroaching white man. But they left behind a gift for the people of Texas – the only gambling casino is a Kickapoo-owned property.
As for the caverns, the formations began to develop when the slow-moving acidic water carved out passageways through the Devils River limestone. Kickapoo Cavern is one of the largest caverns of the state park and has some great geological formations inside.
The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department or TPWD had acquired the land in December 1986 and opened it in 1991, albeit on a limited basis. In 2010 full access to the park became available for the public.
Geological Cave Formations in the Cavern
The cavern represents approximately four million years of geology. Visitors to the cavern will get to see the largest speleothem in the state. It is a natural column formation that rises as tall as an eight-story building.
The cave is mostly dry, but dripping water has played a huge role in shaping various formations such as stalactites that look like icicles and stalagmites, sheets of flowstone, and moon milk that looks like white cream cheese.
Wildlife in Kickapoo Cavern
The Kickapoo Cavern State Park is home to various wildlife such as raccoons, ringtails, whitetail deer, porcupine, rabbit, and other rodents. One can also view a wide variety of birds, such as varied bunting and gray vireo. Several reptiles and amphibians live in the park, such as Texas alligator lizards and Barking frogs.
While Bats are at this state park, they are not seen at Kickapoo Cavern.
Download our FREE Kickapoo Cavern Guide (Unofficial)
Is Kickapoo Cavern Haunted?
Kickapoo Cavern State Park is known for the wild open space and solitude but is in no way haunted.
How Big is Kickapoo Cavern?
The Kickapoo Cavern has an estimated total length of 1400 ft.
Kickapoo Cavern Tours
The guided tour of the cavern is a formal event which means you need to sign a liability waiver, carry two sources of light per hiker, and no children under the age of five are allowed for the tour. One can explore the caves only with the help of a guide. Open spelunking is not allowed here to protect the caves and the animals that live there.
The cave is underdeveloped, and the underground adventure can be strenuous for some people. The rugged conditions of the cave and the massive boulders will never fail to impress you as visitors scramble over the limestone blocks and walk around the ancient stalagmites. Visitors get to see the largest speleothem in Texas and innumerable other formations such as stalactites, stalagmites, and flowstone.
The tours occur every Saturday at 1 pm, but it starts when at least five people have reserved their spot, and it lasts for two to three hours.
Tour Prices and Discounts
The entrance fee for Kickapoo Cavern State Park is USD 3, and there are no charges for children who are 12 years and under. One must pay an additional USD 10 per person for the cave tours. The tours are limited to a maximum of 10 people.
Is the Cavern Cold?
You can come here even on the coldest days as the temperature inside the caverns is always 70 degrees F throughout the year.
What to Wear?
Lights clothes will do if you are coming in summer. You can wear sturdy, closed-toe hiking or walking shoes with good traction. You should also carry two light sources per person.
Kickapoo Cavern Hours
The Cavern is open from Friday (8 am) to Monday (5 pm). It remains closed on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.
What to Do at Kickapoo Cavern (Beside Tours)
There are many things to do at this State Park after the cave tours are over.
Get a chance to hike miles of trails and catch glimpses of wildlife along the way. Once you are here, do not miss the Armadillo Lookout Trail, which affords a panoramic view of the southwestern part of the park.
There are more than 200 migrant and resident bird species that have been spotted at the Kickapoo Cavern State Park. You should borrow a pair of binoculars and spend your time bird watching. This is a great article for beginner birders: A Beginner’s Guide to Bird Watching While Camping or Hiking
Best Time to Visit Kickapoo Caverns
The best time to visit is from mid-March to September. During this time, you can visit the nearby Stuart Cave to catch a glimpse of its impressive bat population.
How to Get to Kickapoo Cavern
The Kickapoo Cavern is inside the State Park, around 22 miles north of Brackettville, Texas, near the Edwards County line, just a bit off RR 674. It is on the southern edge of Edwards Plateau in between Kinney and Edwards Counties.
Hotels near Kickapoo Cavern
You can stay for the night at one of the campsites. There are five full hookup campsites, ten campsites with water facilities only, and a group camping site that can accommodate 30 people. However, the park will be unable to fit RVs over 36’.
Visiting the Cavern
Do you need more information before visiting? Call (830) 563 – 2342 or Kickapoo Cavern State Park for an information packet.
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