We left our Airbnb before the sun was up. Unfortunately, we’d set ourselves up with tickets for a tour at Mammoth Cave in Kentucky at 1PM making our timeline extremely tight.
Yup. Another, no coffee, no bathroom morning. Another 4 hours full of anxiety over having four minutes to spare. Or so We thought.
About an hour in we started to re-do the time zone math. We were swinging it the wrong way, thinking we would lose an hour crossing back into the central time zone. Total face-palm. We had it backwards. We actually gained an hour.
Which meant that we not only had time to stop for coffee, but also would arrive at our destination practically in the middle of nowhere land USA with two hours to kill and nothing to do. Heh!
I had drive through Dunkin’ coffee and a drive through breakfast sandwich and potatoes at the next town on the highway. It was very satisfying and what makes me happy, makes my hubby happy too. He noticed! 😉
When we arrived at the mammoth cave visitor center we literally had an hour and a half to go before our tour started. We left the national park and drove to cave city where we found… nada!
Much like Smokey Mountain National Park, most of the “attractions” were closed for winter. Go figure.
We did find an antique alley in the town and braved a stop in one place.
It was dreadful. Even Jim who is into that stuff came away saying it was all junk. To which I said, “yes, like always.”
After that we wandered back into the national park and found a trail that was short enough for us to explore and still have time to spare. Most of the trails would have taken us several hours. Of course.
That one short trail led to the cave where Floyd Collins met his end in 1925. He was stuck, located, and despite much effort still died inside the cave that collapsed around him. Reading about that certainly didn’t make me feel better about the cave tour we were about to embark on.
Still, what’s a girl to do?
I did feel slightly claustrophobic entering the cave. We did the domes and dripstones tour. To be fair, hearing the park ranger talk about the tour was more anxiety inducing than the tour itself. And once on the tour, I was more creeped out by the mammoth sized spiders and insects than the tight spaces.
Much like the exploring we did on the trails the last couple of days, the pictures just do justice to the real thing.
The tour was cool. The cave was cool, and just enough to feel satisfied with the drive and slight detour on our route home.
Once we were out of the park, we continued on the winding highways north. We actually had not booked a destination for the night because we were not sure how we would feel or how far we would get.
As it turned out, we opted to stop in Evansville Indiana, just across the Ohio river, for no other reason than just to add yet another state to our count for the week.
After dinner at a nicer steakhouse, Cork ‘n Cleaver though, neither of us felt like sticking around and so we continued on, back into Illinois. We ended up stopping in Mt. Vernon where we snagged a room at a Holiday Inn Express. Free breakfast yo!
Thus concluded day 5 of our little Adventure and left me feeling very ready to be back home.
Lucky for me, that’s exactly where the road tomorrow will lead.
Cheers to Going Home,