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Stump Cross Caverns


OS grid reference:- SE 088 635

Stump Cross Caverns is one of Britain's premier show caves, located in Nidderdale on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales National Park. The caverns are a site of special scientific interest (SSSI) and home to some amazing natural formations.

The formation of Stump Cross Caverns began millions of years ago, when the area which is now the Yorkshire Dales was covered by oceans. Sediment from the ocean floor would eventually form limestone, the basic material from which the caves are made. The caves themselves began to form as the limestone was eroded by weak acid rain, created when carbon dioxide from the atmosphere mixed with the precipitation to form carbonic acid.

The caves at Stumps Cross were then discovered in 1860 by miners who looking for lead seams in the Yorkshire Dales.

Remains of wolverines, a giant member of the weasel family have been discovered at Stump Cross. It is thought that these animals entered the caves looking for food such as reindeer and bison, the remains of which have also been found. The wolverine remains are on display in the visitor's centre.

There is a gift shop with a great selection of crystals and fossils, and a tea room and cafe with home baked cakes and scones.


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