Fat Man's Misery - Beneath Your Feet

A narrow key hole shape cave passage.
The narrow key hole shape passage of Fat Man's Misery adds a bit of challenge to move through.

NPS Photo/ David Kem

Quick Facts
Mammoth Cave, KY 42259
Provides visitors an opportunity to experience this cave location from above the ground.
World Heritage Site and Biosphere Reserve

Historical/Interpretive Information/Exhibits

Located about one mile from the Historic entrance, you will find yourself entering Fat Man’s Misery. Fat Man’s Misery is a winding keyhole shaped passageway, the lower part of the passageway is about as wide as your hips or a little wider, above your hips the passage widens to about 5 ½ feet or more, at the very end, the floor comes up 2 feet for a 20 foot stoop walk, the passageway is a little over 100 feet long. 

This section was once described by an 1866 visitor as,

"… a tortuous rift, a snake in convolution and an avenue of torture in ruggedness, narrowness, and lowness. It would perplex a groundhog.”

Despite (or because of) its ruggedness, narrowness, and lowness, Fat Man’s Misery is one of the most asked about and popular passages in the cave. No groundhogs have been perplexed there. 

NPS Mobile App Users: Click here to watch a video of a ranger in Fat Man's Misery. 



Mammoth Cave National Park

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42.767 seconds

Join Ranger Ashley as she shows you Fat Man's Misery, 264 feet beneath the surface.

Last updated: February 22, 2021