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Mercer Caverns, Murphys

#1 of 9 in Parks in Calaveras County
Must see · Cave · Nature / Park
Mercer Caverns is a show cave located one mile north of Murphys in Calaveras County California. It is named after the gold prospector Walter J. Mercer who discovered the caves around 1885 and filed a claim. The caverns have a large number of speleothems, stalactites, and stalagmites. It is formed in a marble unit known as the Calaveras Formation. It also contains a large display of aragonite frostwork.

The standard tour of the cave descends 160 feet, 208 steps down and 232 up in a traverse between the natural and an artificial entrance. The cave was mapped in 1986 to a length of 3389 feet and a total depth of 192 feet. The map can be viewed on the cave's web site.

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Mercer Caverns reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
211 reviews
  • Reservation or ticketing process needs to be better. Can't buy tickets over the phone or online and no update on how many can go per group or how many slots are left for each tour time. You can...  more »
  • Beautiful natural cave formations, takes your breath away. The 1-hour guided tour is exhausting if you have knee problems, as you’ll be taking a lot of stairs up and down, but totally worth it. We...  more »
  • Great historic tour but if claustrophobic, beware! Cool adventure into a home in the ground to see awesome underground cave. Steep stairs and awesome guide. I am claustrophobic but made it since it was so interesting but had to really concentrate!
  • Such a cool experience! Our guide Tim was informative and entertaining. Definitely would recommend hitting this place up for anyone staying in the area or just passing through.
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