Jewel Cave National Monument
By Logan Hanson
About Jewel Cave
Jewel Cave is located in Custer, South Dakota (43.7304°N, 103.8291°W) which is 11 hours from Liberty, Missouri. The closest town near the cave is Custer County. The park became a national monument in 1908, two prospectors by the name of Frank and Albert Michaud discovered the cave after they felt cold air coming out of a hole in the ground. The temperature in the cave is 49° and its said that this temperature is a constant. The cave is full of spar crystals, acid rich water, limestone, and layers of calcite. Some mineral/rock types found in the cave are Calcite and Gypsum, these rocks/minerals formed after the water that formed in the cave drained and caused common calcite to form and speleothems.
Jewel Cave is one of the largest caves in the world, in fact it is the third largest cave in the world.
Park Ranger interview
I sent an email to Park Ranger Lisa Held, and asked her if there was any problems facing the park. Perhaps a lack of visitors or if there was any weather conditions affecting the cave, but I have yet to hear back from her.