The Herald Bulletin

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Community

September 21, 2013

Newly opened Indiana Caverns invites explorers

Caves discovered in 2010 part of Binkley cave system

CORYDON – Just south of Indiana’s first state capital there is a unique opportunity to see what exists below the surface in a cave system that was formed more than 40,000 years ago.

The Binkley cave system was discovered in the 1960s by Gary Roberson, whostarted exploring the extensive system while a high school student. Roberson discovered the portion of the cave system that is now Indiana Caverns in 2010 and the caves were open to the public in June.

Roberson has also been involved in the exploration of the Squire Boone and Marengo caves and is normally on site to answer visitors’ questions.The remains of a Bison skeleton are identified during the 80-minute tour as well as places that have been identified where bears nested. The tour guides are knowledgeable about the rock formations and the wildlife associated with a cave. One of the first points of interest is a 40-foot waterfall.

A partner in the development of Indiana Caverns, Rob Houchens, grew up south of Russiaville and graduated from Clinton Central High School. He is a graduate from Anderson University.

“I wasn’t involved in the discovery of the cave, I’ve been involved in the development,” he said. “In this area there are 37 miles of mapped caves. The Indiana Speleological Society goes out most Saturdays and map passages to the cave.”

Houchens said the Binkley cave system is currently the 11th longest cave in the U.S., and as more passages are mapped and discovered is expected to move up the list.

As in most caves open to the public there are impressive rock formations showing how water eroded the structures over thousands of years. The Indiana Caverns includes a four-story waterfall and the 80-minute long tour includes a boat ride for visitors to explore more of the caverns.

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