Description - Longhorn Cavern State Park, south of Burnet in Burnet County, is 645.62 acres classified as a scenic park in the rugged Hill Country. Longhorn Cavern was acquired in 1932 - 1937 from private owners. It was dedicated a state park in 1932, was opened in 1938 and was dedicated as a natural landmark in 1971.
Copyright: Texas State Parks & Historical Sites
Inside Longhorn Cavern
The cave was first formed when the ground levels of water began to drop. As this downward movement occurred, the water began to dissolve the limestone. This downward drainage continued until great underground stream beds were cut out of solid rock. It is this unusual combination of dissolving and cutting by water that makes Longhorn Cavern one of the most unique caves of the world.
The cave has been used as a shelter since prehistoric times. Among legends about the cave is one that the outlaw Sam Bass hid a $2 million cache of stolen money inside. Confederates made gunpowder in the cave during the Civil War. Legend also says Texas Rangers rescued a kidnapped girl from Indians in the cave.
The park is open daily from dawn to dusk, but is closed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. The busy season is March to August.
Longhorn Cavern is Hosting a Bi-Weekly "Concert in the Cave".
- The prime attraction to this State Park is its cavern, here visitors have the opportunities to learn about the local geology.
A popular attraction to the park is the Wild Cave Tour. This is a fun way to explore the Longhorn Cavern the wild way. Visitors will crawl, climb and squeeze through small passages. During this 2-3 hour tour you will view formations that were only seen by professional spelunkers up until just a few years ago. Staff specialists will guide you into parts of the cave not shown on regular tours. Small passageways and getting very dirty are definitely a part of this tour and is not recommended for every guest. Special equipment such as hard hats, elbow and knee pads and flashlights are required; bring your own or rent from the park. Tours are generally held on Saturdays by reservation only. Children under 16 are not allowed on regular Wild Cave Tours, please ask the park for modified Wild tours for teens 15 and under.
Facilities include a gift shop, a full service deli and snack counter, a picnic area, and 2 miles of hiking trails. The park is open for day-use only. It is operated by concessionaire, Longhorn Cavern, Inc. An exhibit of Civilian Conservation Corps work done in the Texas State Parks System is on display in the original administration building, no fee is charged.
Nearby parks include Inks Lake and Pedernales Falls State Parks; Enchanted Rock State Natural Area; and the Lyndon B. Johnson State Historical Park and Ranch.
Recreation - The park features historical and nature study. Located in the heart of the Highland Lakes, Longhorn Cavern is near four different lakes and communities that offer excellent opportunities in camping, fishing, and hunting.
Additionally, the park offers guided tours that last approximately 1 hour and 25 minutes (a 1 1/4-mile round trip). For your safety and comfort, low-heeled shoes with rubber soles are recommended. Tours are conveniently scheduled throughout the day. Call (877) 441-CAVE (441-2283) for current tour times. Moreover a A geology program has been developed by a qualified geologist for persons of at least 8th grade age. This 4-hour program includes a brief explanation of the complex geology of the Texas Hill Country and how it relates to Longhorn Cavern. A cavern tour and a field trip are included. Cost is $15.00 per person for groups of 15-25.
Climate - Longhorn Cavern State Park is located at elevations ranging from 779 to 1585 feet. Temperatures within the park range from an average January minimum of 33 degrees and a July average maximum of 98 degrees. The park has an average annual rainfall of 30.4 inches. Current weather conditions can vary from day to day. For more details, call the park or Park Information at 1-800-792-1112.
Longhorn Cavern State Park is located approximately 6 miles west and 6 miles south of Burnet, Texas on Park Road 4, off US Highway 281.