See one of the southeast’s must-see attractions, Ruby Falls.
The history of Ruby Falls starts with the Lookout Mountain Cave whose natural entrance was located at the foot of Lookout Mountain along the banks of the Tennessee River. This particular cave has been used and explored by Native Americans, cave explorers, notorious outlaws, Civil War soldiers, and others. However, this cave closed to the public in 1905 due to construction by the Southern Railroad Company. So, in 1928 Leo Lambert, a local cave enthusiast, began drilling an elevator shaft with the hopes of opening back up the cave. Instead, he discovered a hidden marvel. Ruby Falls started offering tours to the public on June 16, 1930.
Along with your tour, you’ll learn more about the history of Fall and how exactly Leo Lambert discovered them. Additionally, you will see various formations including flowstones, stalactites, stalagmites, helictites, soda straws, and columns.
The largest formation at Ruby Falls, the Leaning Tower, seen above, is estimated to be between three and five million years old.
If you have a good rain before descending into the cave, you may even get to see the underground streamflow.
After wandering through all of the formations, you reach the Falls Room. Ruby Falls is a 145-foot high underground waterfall, making it America’s deepest commercial cave and largest underground waterfall. The waterfall has also been named one of the Ten Most Incredible Cave Waterfalls on Earth.
After you exit the cavern, be sure to head to the top of Lookout Mountain Tower for panoramic views of the Tennessee Valley. The Tower was built from the rocks taken out of the elevator shaft and stands over 70 feet tall.