Candle-lit Christmas

There are a lot of things to do during the holiday season. There are trees to decorate, cookies to make, cookies to eat, presents to wrap, presents to buy (eek!), carols to sing. You have to say hello to friends you know, and everyone you meet. And so forth.



It really is quite exciting. But, no matter how much you love the holidays, it can also get just a bit overwhelming. Sometimes you just need to spend a few hours in a nice quiet hole.

Have we go the holiday outing for you: Candlelight Tours at Lewis and Clark Caverns.

For over one hundred years, the Caverns have been wowing visitors, and most of that time they did so without the aid of electricity. We talk about the Caverns a lot on the blog, and visiting in the summer –when you are able to peer into the depths of the galleries – is an extraordinary experience. But there is something extra spectacular about being able to see these wonders with only the candlelight that would have illuminated the way of early visitors.

Lewis & Clark Caverns

Not to wax too poetic, but it gives you (or me, at least) a new sense of the wonder and mystery of the world beneath our feet. It also gives a new appreciation for those early tourists, and especially for the CCC men who built the stairs and walkways under conditions far closer to the candlelit tours than to the specially designed LED experience we enjoy today.

The candlelight tours run December 20-22 and 27-29. The last approximately 2 hours and involve 2 hours of walking. This includes the 1 1/4 mile walk to the entrance and from the exit. Although the Caverns are the main attraction, the walk up gives quite nice views over the rest of the Park and the Jefferson River Canyon, which is beautiful in the snowy winter. For safety reasons, the upper half of the tour is lit, and the second half is candlelit. It is an extraordinary experience, but visitors need to use their own judgement if they (and their children) will be comfortable on both the snowy path and in the dark Caverns.

Prices are $20 per adult (12 years & older); $8 for children (6-11 years); children 5 years & under are discouraged from attempting the tour. Reservations required; ticket sales begin December 2, 2019. Call 406-287-3541. Tickets are non-refundable.