Rogers, AR - Day three of our Off The Beaten Path series takes us North to Rogers near Beaver Lake.
A spot where local history and the beauty of nature meet, War Eagle Cavern features fun for all ages. From gem panning to nature trails, and of course the cave tours, it has something for everyone.
"Everything from the James boys used it, to the Indians, to Civil War soldiers used our cave, so there's a lot of history, a lot of information here," says owner Dennis Boyer.
Nestled in the hills on Beaver Lake rests a hidden treasure, but War Eagle Cavern wasn't always the local landmark it is today. Boyer says, "My wife and I found it here almost 18 years ago. It was pretty much a closed down tourist attraction - no paved roads, no fences, so we decided it was a piece of property that needed to be saved." Rather than making it a more commercial park, the couple focused on restoring the natural beauty the cave provides. Boyer says, "A lot of history in this cave which is rather amazing, so we really try to talk about - the cave has been used for probably several thousands of years by ancient peoples and the indians, outlaws, moonshiners, so we talk about this history of the cave."
The park itself is 22 acres and the standard tour takes you half a mile into the cave, but there is a way that you can see more of the four miles they have mapped. "It gives you a good sampling of the natural entranceway, several big, giant domes that soar to the ceiling, a bat encounter, waterfalls, brimstone dams and such, but where our tour turns around is just the start of the cave," says Boyer.
To take a deeper look inside, War Eagle Cavern offers a spelunking tour that's open during the summer.
Boyer says they take anyone 11 and older who doesn't mind getting a little wet and can crawl. "And there's parts of the cave back there that are still even bigger than what we see in the very front of the caves." Whichever tour you take, you're sure to learn a lot about the natural state. Boyer says, "The source of water coming out of the cave, early people coming to an area looked for fresh water, so the underground springs that fed through the cave were in there. The cave itself is history right there, still developing, still growing in there."
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