• fog flows through Cumberland Gap

    Cumberland Gap

    National Historical Park KY,TN,VA

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  • Cumberland Gap Tip Line

    Help protect your national park! Report any crimes or suspicious activity including damage or theft of park resources. More »

  • No Cave Tours or Hensley Tours on September 27

    There will be no Gap Cave or Hensley Settlement tours offered on September 27, 2014 due to special Heritage Walk program. For more information please call the park visitor center at (606) 248-2817, extension 1075.

  • Sugar Run Trail Closed to Horses

    The Sugar Run Trail is temporarily closed to horse use due to the number of fallen trees as a result of recent storms. The trail is still open for hikers, but hikers should use caution.

  • Back the Bears!

    Support the park's "Back the Bears" campaign and help keep our bears wild and safe! More »

Geologic Formations

Sand Cave, Photo by John Graves

Sand Cave

Photo by John Graves

Along the south face of Cumberland Mountain, in Virginia, are over 30 caves varying from 20 feet to over sixteen miles in length. These caves occur in the Greenbrier Limestone formation. Some of the caves contain vertical shafts up to 125 feet deep as well as small, tight, crawl-ways large enough for a small person or child to enter. The caves are rich in wildlife including numerous species of bats, salamanders, aquatic invertebrates, cave crickets, and small rodents. Most of the caves in the park are closed to the publlic, however, ranger guided tours of spectacular Gap Cave are offered throughout the year.

Sand Cave, a natural scenic area in Kentucky, is a half-domed chamber, 250 feet across in front (open). The floor slopes from back to front and is 1.25 acres of fine, colorful sand.

At the east end of the park are 500-foot cliffs known as White Rocks. These cliffs rise above the surrounding wooded slopes and offer the visitor a 360-degree view of the surrounding area.

Did You Know?

Kentucky’s Historian Laureate, Dr. Thomas Clark

Kentucky’s Historian Laureate, Dr. Thomas Clark, listed Cumberland Gap as #1 in his list of 11 sites that every Kentuckian should visit. (Dr. Clark passed away on July 28th, 2005… just two weeks short of his 102nd birthday!)