Frequently Asked Questions

Will I see any bats on the tour? Unless you take the Historic Lantern Tour, you are unlikely to see bats. This is because bats only enter the cave through the historic entrance, and usually travel no more than 1/4-mile into the cave.

How do I know if I can fit in a space 8 1/2 inches high by 24 inches wide before I make a reservation for the Wild Caving Tour? Go to a doorway and measure 8 1/2 inches up from the floor. Stretch a string across the doorway at this height, and around 24 inches wide. Have a friend watch you crawl under this string. If you can fit under the string without pulling it off, you can fit.

Will I need a jacket? Jewel Cave is 49 degrees year round. You will be most comfortable if you wear a light jacket, sweater, or sweatshirt when visiting the cave.

What kind of shoes do I need? Sneakers, tennis shoes, or hiking boots are required for the Scenic and Lantern Tours. You will be walking up and down over 700 stair steps on the Scenic Tour, and stoop-walking over unpaved trails on the Lantern Tour.
Sandals, thongs, flip flops, or other shoes that are not securely fastened to the foot are not allowed on any cave tour. If questionable, park rangers may ask that you change your footwear before taking part in a guided cave tour.
For the Wild Caving Tour, boots (above the ankle) with good traction are required.

Last updated: July 22, 2018

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Mailing Address:

11149 U.S. Hwy. 16
Building B12

Custer, SD 57730


(605) 673-8300

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