Kartchner Caverns … Arizona

Caving … Holiday Style

It rained like hell on the second day of our week in Arizona. Poured. Never expected that. And I could see how flash floods can be a huge danger down here.

SO … what to do on a rainy day? AHA ! Caves nearby. Kartchner Caverns. It can’t rain in caves … can it?

Rainy Pool ... Sierra Vista

Nobody in the pool on a rainy day. Not even crazy Canadians.

On the road

Off we go.

On the road

On the road still

Karchner Caves entrance

Rose in the garden

Kartchner Park has hiking trails and a hummingbird garden …

Rose & cactus

Flora and Tourists.

Karchner Caves out back

There’s a fair sized facility here with a theatre and gift shop and all,
but I was annoyed so I refused to take any pictures of it
(because they wouldn’t allow us to take any pictures inside the Caverns).

Well … not totally annoyed.

bat earsYou see they’ve got these big bat ears you can try out …

Un huh.

road runner

Anyway … The Caves: 

(All images taken from the net)

Kept secret for 14 years by their discoverers.
who feared that the caves would be defiled and spoiled.

Karchner Caves map

The caves are BIG so there’s 2 Tours – about an hour long each
if you want to see the whole thing.

We took the the one with the Throne Room and
the magnificent Kubla Khan column

Kartchner Caverns

Kartchner Caverns 2

Kartchner Caverns 3

Below: The Throne Room

Kartchner Caverns 3 The Throne Room

Kartchner Caverns 3 The Throne Room 2

Kartchner Caverns 4

Kartchner Caverns 5_________________________________________________

 “Kubla Kahn” column

Kubla Khan

Kubla Khan 3

“Kubla Khan; or, A Vision in a Dream: A Fragment”

by Samuel Taylor Coleridge, 1797

In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
A stately pleasure-dome decree :
Where Alph, the sacred river, ran
Through caverns measureless to man
Down to a sunless sea.

Kubla Khan 2
See that person at the bottom ?

Kubla Khan 4

Kubla Khan 5

Bats :

Kartchner is a Living Cave.
The “Big Room” is closed during the summer for bat breeding.

Kartchner bats


From Wikipedia: “Kubla Khan; or, A Vision in a Dream: A Fragment” /ˌkʊblə ˈkɑːn/ is a poem written by Samuel Taylor Coleridge, completed in 1797 and published in 1816. According to Coleridge’s Preface to “Kubla Khan”, the poem was composed one night after he experienced an opium-influenced dream after reading a work describing Xanadu, the summer palace of the Mongol ruler and Emperor of China Kublai Khan. Upon waking, he set about writing lines of poetry that came to him from the dream until he was interrupted by a person from Porlock. The poem could not be completed according to its original 200–300 line plan as the interruption caused him to forget the lines. He left it unpublished and kept it for private readings for his friends until 1816 when, at the prompting of Lord Byron, it was published.

Some of Coleridge’s contemporaries denounced the poem and questioned his story of its origin. It was not until years later that critics began to openly admire the poem. Most modern critics now view “Kubla Khan” as one of Coleridge’s three great poems, along with The Rime of the Ancient Mariner and Christabel. The poem is considered one of the most famous examples of Romanticism in English poetry. A copy of the manuscript is a permanent exhibit at the British Museum in London.

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4 thoughts on “Kartchner Caverns … Arizona”

  1. They call this a “Living Cave” – they avoid interfering with things as much as possible.
    Wish I could have my own pics, but these are nice.

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