Cave of the Winds
Cave of the Winds is the oldest attraction in the Pikes Peak area of Colorado. The attraction has a fascinating history and it offers two exciting tours for the enjoyment of visitors. Discover both paved and unpaved pathways, spacious chambers and learn the folklore of the Cave on either of two guided tours.
Billions of years ago, volcanic activity, the moving of the earth’s plates and a slowly changing atmosphere worked together to form Cave of the Winds. As recently as 1.8 billion years ago, an extensive shallow sea covered the area where the Cave of the Winds is located. The sediments accumulated over a long period of time and eventually reached a height of 40,000 feet. Slowly, the formation changed into sedimentary rock and the metamorphic rock. Today, we know this rock formation as the Idaho Springs Formation.
In 1869, a homesteader from Williams Canyon, Arthur B. Love, entered the Cave through a narrow passage, but never opened an entrance. In 1875, while blasting limestone, Messieurs Case and Willcutt rediscovered the passageway into the Cave. They named the underground cavern Mammoth Cave and opened it as a tourist attraction. The following year, they sold the property to Tom Green, who kept the attraction accessible to the public until 1880. A charge of fifty cents was levied on those wishing to explore the Cave.
After 1880, the cave was no longer a tourist attraction, but nevertheless drew adventurers and thrill seekers to the Pikes Peak region. Harper’s Weekly published a photograph of the cave in 1875. An engraving at the entrance identified the attraction as Cave of the Winds.
Cave of the Winds offers two tours to visitors, the Discovery Tour and the Lantern Tour.
The Discovery Tour has been enjoyed by visitors to Cave of the Winds for decades and is the attraction’s classic tour. It consists of a leisurely walk and is available to visitors year ‘round. The Cave of the Winds has a consistent temperature of 54 degrees Fahrenheit, so be sure to bring along a sweater. Comfortable walking shoes are recommended. People of all ages and from all walks of life will enjoy the beautiful, mysterious rock formations as a guide explains the history and other interesting facts about Cave of the Winds.
When visitors toured the Cave of the Winds a century ago, they used candles and lanterns to light their way as they walked the eerie passageways and explored mysterious chambers. The Cave of the Winds Lantern Tour is 1.5 hours in length. You will descent deep into the ground, lead by a tour guide, to explore the dark passages and chambers of the Cave, while the guide tells frightening stories of the unexplained and other intriguing folklore.
Note: Due to natural conditions, strollers and wheelchairs cannot gain access to Cave of the Winds. If you plan to use a baby pouch, it must be worn in the front.
For a stunning light show experience that will leave you breathless, be sure to take in Cave of the Winds Laser Show. The Show begins at 9 pm and lights up five stories of the canyon’s walls with a backdrop of the Colorado Springs skyline. Tickets can be purchased the day of the show. Reservations are not accepted.
For an awesome caving experience that will delight the entire family, visit Cave of the Winds. The fascinating formations, twisting passageways and exquisite geological chambers are a natural wonder that will be the highlight of your visit to the Pikes Peak area.