Mammoth Cave to improve underground trail

August 31, 2022 GMT

CAVE CITY, Ky. (AP) — Mammoth Cave National Park plans to start improvements this fall on an underground trail with funding from the Great American Outdoors Act.

The park said in a statement that it will receive about $6.5 million in funding to rehabilitate about 1 mile (1.6 kilometers) of a trail from the New Entrance to the Frozen Niagara entrance.

The project will harden the existing cave trail, replace narrow stairways, install new benches and improve overlooks. It aims to improve visitor experience and access for emergency personnel, officials said.

“The current trail has not seen any major improvements since the 1930’s when the Civilian Conservation Corps constructed the path used today,” Superintendent Barclay Trimble said. “Once this project is complete, we will have a safer and more comfortable tour route and provide even better protection to the cave’s sensitive resources for the next generation of cave visitors.”

Work is expected to begin in November and last until next summer. Some cave trails will be closed during the work, but several others will remain unaffected.