Overnight Adventure in Cumberland Caverns

The What Waits Below Overnight Adventure! is for all scouts and siblings ages 6 and up on February 29, 2020. Includes two tours and sleeping at over 300 feet underground. Read more below for signups, cost and what to bring on this underground adventure.

Photo: Cumberland Caverns

What to Expect:

Daily Walking Tour: Guests will view some of the largest rooms and passageways on this tour, including the Volcano Room, a waterfall, pools and a light show. Approximately ~1.5 hours/~1.5 miles long. Not handicap accessible – the cave path is uneven, contains slopes, and has stairs.  

Rocky Topper Tour: A great introduction to caving (spelunking). Expect to get muddy on this approximately ~1.5-2 hour tour that includes climbing ladders, narrow/tight passageways, and belly crawls. To be allowed to go on the tours, everyone must crawl through a “test box” (19”x33”). 

This is potentially a late night – may not arrive back to the underground campsite until after 10:30 pm (central time).

Image result for cumberland caverns camping

Photo: Cumberland Caverns

Location and Date:

Event Date: Saturday, February 29, 2020, to Sunday, March 1, 2020

Arrival: Mid/Late-Afternoon (the exact time TBD)

Depart: 8:45 AM (central time)

Location: Cumberland Caverns, 1437 Cumberland Caverns Road, McMinnville, TN 37110 (931-668-4396)

Event Cost:

$50 per person (this includes approximately $3 for a Pack pizza dinner). Note: Cumberland Caverns does not issue refunds. Vouchers will be issued by the caverns to those that can’t attend unless someone else can’t take your place. 


Saturday Dinner – Early Pizza Dinner as a Pack 

 Late Saturday – Snacks available for purchase by individuals after the cave tours 

Sunday Breakfast – Breakfast provided by the cave as part of the overnight adventure  

What to Bring:

For spelunking, a t-shirt or thin long-sleeve shirt, long pants/jeans, lace-up/close-toed shoes (no sandals or flipflops), knee pads, gloves, and a flashlight with extra batteries. The cave provides a helmet and headlamp (you can not bring your own).  DO NOT participate in these spelunking adventure tours if you have heart or respiratory condition, knee or back problems.

Also plan to bring bedding (sleeping bag, air mattress (they have power for a pump), sleeping pad), tarp, a change of clean clothes, light jacket/thin long-sleeve shirt, garbage bag for wet/muddy clothes, personal toiletries, cash (the card machines sometimes don’t work as we are underground)/debit card, and a water bottle.

Bring warm clothes to sleep in, the cave will be cool. More details will be provided closer to the date. Pack light (think duffle bag for your personal supplies, then sleeping bags and mattress) as all supplies have to be carried into the cave by hand (1/2 mile walk); you will not be able to return to your car once we are in the cave.

Items not allowed: coolers, outside food/drinks/chewing gum, fires, tobacco, alcohol, weapons, and or laser pointers.

What do I need to wear on a Caving Tour?

  • Jeans, or pants are best (Remember, you will be getting dirty, so not your best pair).
  • Shorts should not be worn because you will be crawling on your hands and knees.
  • Hiking boots are best, good lace-up sneakers will also work (“Bubblegum Alley” is a great place to lose shoes!).
  • Layer a long sleeve shirt with a T-shirt (or just a T-shirt is fine for Spelunking).
  • Helpful Hint: Gloves, knee pads, and elbow pads are recommended – but not required.

Sign Up:

Due Date: November 20, 2019. Note that the Pack has to register/pay in advance to reserve spots, which fill up months in advance. THERE WILL BE NO LATE SIGNUPS. 

Register Here: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/4090B4AADA828A6FF2-cumberland

Forms: Both BSA Health and a Cumberland Caverns release form will be required for both kids and adults.  We’ll collect those closer to the date of the event.  https://filestore.scouting.org/filestore/HealthSafety/pdf/680-001_AB.pdf

Photo by Tim Curtis

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