Indiana’s Lost River Cave System Gets U.S. Federal Protection

Inside the Hoosier National Forest

Photo by b_nicodemus/flickr

The Lost River cave system in southern Indiana’s Hoosier National Forest is one of 28 recent purchases by the U.S. Government that stretch from North Carolina to Oregon.

The purchases were made to protect clean water and fish and wildlife habitat and absorb private holdings within wilderness areas.

As the second-largest cave system in Indiana at over 32 kilometers (20 miles) long, the site is home to a number of rare species of cave fish and insects, including a few that have not been found anywhere else.

The Lost River cave system is one of the most interesting geological sites in all of Indiana, Angela Hughes, Nature Conservancy of Indiana

Purchased from the Nature Conservancy for about $546,000, the money coming from the Land and Water Conservation Fund. The fund, created in 1964, taps mitigation fees paid by companies drilling for offshore oil and gas to finance the fund.

Lost River cave system in Southern Indiana will get U.S. protection []

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Comments (2)

  1. April 9, 2012 at 10:10 am

    It’s interesting to see all the caver pictures in the exploration of this great cave. I had the opportunity to see some two miles of it during the NSS Convention several years ago – terrific cave.

    However, with it’s addition to the Hoosier National Forest, it now comes under the blanket closure order covering all the caves in Hoosier NF, and so access is now lost – unless some other unannounced arrangement has been made. If someone has knowledge of this, please inform us. Thank you.

    • Taxpayer
      April 10, 2012 at 1:45 am

      More government control almost always equals less access to anything, and with WNS, the cave may be closed for our caving life time. Make sure a good big map is publicly published on the Internet so that we, the American people (all of us non government folk) don’t forget what the government has taken. Don’t widely publish maps of privately held or delicate caves. Keep a basic right as American taxpayers to know what we own. The government wants to get all cave location data, but does not want you (the public) to have it. On the other hand, they sure want your tax dollars to pay for their jobs, which need to be cut. Just look at the zoo they created in Harrison Crawford Forest preserve (Indiana), that was a wonderful undeveloped area back in the 1970’s. Now it is a pay zoo with a lot of government workers. You can never turn back the clock on government control. There was a time when you had a right to camp anywhere in a National Forest for free. I understand that right is now lost too.


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