Devil’s Sinkhole State Park-Rocksprings

Devil’s Sinkhole State Park-Rocksprings
 The Devils Sinkhole State Park located southeast of Rocksprings in Edwards County. It is comprised of 1,850 acres of rugged ranchland. The main attraction is the sinkhole itself, which has been a National Landmark since 1985. Devil’s Sinkhole what an interesting name right? Well did you know that it was almost named The Gateway to Hell???? This is what Ammon Billings wanted to name the spot until his wife talked him out of it and choose the name herself in 1876. LOL!!
Cave Facts
The Devil’s Sinkhole is the largest and third deepest single chamber cavern in the state.The opening of the sinkhole measures approximately 40 x 60 feet. From the opening to the tip of the mountain, it is a vertical free fall of 140 ft and the cavern drops roughly 400 feet at its deepest point. It is for this reason that you can only visit the sinkhole with a tour guide. Larry, our guide was extremely knowledgeable he went on to tell us that the only thing that could survive the fall was a snake (simply because they have no bones and glide all the way down).The earliest known explorer of the cave was H. S. Barber. Now the interesting thing about Barber is that he carved his name in the cave and dated it October 19, 1889. Cool right? Another interesting cave fact is that it is the only place in the world you can find an endemic amphipod, a shrimp-like organism. But that’s not all it is also home to a rare aquatic isopod. Wow, right!!!

Sacred Place for Native Americans

Larry told us that this the site was undoubtedly considered a sacred place by native peoples. He said there are several small pre historic campsites dating back to sometime between 2500 to 4000 B.C. However, the exact locations of these sites are not disclosed to anyone. Larry went on to tell us that the Devil’s Sinkhole is one of the largest bedrock lithic resources in Texas. Because of this for years, people have found arrowheads that were made from the chert at the Sinkhole. He told us that they have been found as far as Venezuela! Isn’t that cool? He also showed us “Sheep’s Ear.” Do you know what they used this for because I had no clue??? Larry told us Sheep’s Ear was used as toilet paper!!! And you know what if I had to I probably would use it too because it was so very extremely soft. Actually, it was the softest plant I have ever felt.

Mexican Free-tailed Bats

Now that you know a bit about the park let me tell you about the main attractions. The Mexican Free-tailed Bats that live in the cave.Now, do you know how much a bat weighs? I had no clue until Larry told us. Any guess??? Well, a Mexican Free tail bat weighs 2 quarters and a penny. You can sign up to take a bat tour. Now, this is awesome because you actually get to see them emerge from the cave at dusk. How cool is that? We were lucky enough to go on the darkest night so they were having a “Bats & Star show” right after the bats emerged. The tour starts out with you seeing a short video in the Visitor Center then you get a police escort. Yes, a police escort to the sinkhole. Once, you arrive at the Sink hole, Andrew the president of the Sinkhole Society gives you a lot of interesting facts. 

On average the cave has 3-4 million bats, however, the day we went there was only a skeleton of what is normally there. The females had all gone off to have their babies in a nearby cave that is warmer and once the pups mature they will be back. The guide said that there should be a lot come August. We are hoping to go back and see them.

                              

Stargazing

So after the bats we got the opportunity to do some star gazing. This was awesome we got to use some high power telescopes. The children got the opportunity to see Saturn and Jupiter. They were floored that they really did look like they do in the books!!! They also showed us the constellations! All in all the bats and stars tour was fun!

I would definitely recommend this tour to anyone who is interested in bats and/or stars. However, I would call before you make the reservations just to make sure that you will get a big bat turn out.

Happy Traveling

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26 thoughts on “Devil’s Sinkhole State Park-Rocksprings

  1. OMG Sink Holes are things that haunt me in my dreams! They are terrifying to me!

  2. First, I’m so glad to sink holes in other parts of the US. I’m from Florida and it happens often here. But they are so interesting. Especially the larger ones that you can go down into and in our case in Florida, you can swim in because of all the springs we have.

  3. Devils SinkHole is an interesting name. This looks like a terrifying and thrilling experience. I’ve always read and heard about sinkholes but haven’t seen it in person.

  4. WOW! I have heard of this!! Did you have any special precautions to respect the sacred place?

  5. Thar cave is super cool! Amazing number of bats! I would love to visit!

  6. Wow interesting, this sinkhole looks scary. Must have been a great experience though.

  7. I think the bats would have held me back. But the stargazing? Heck yes!

  8. This must surely be one hell of an adventure. I love adventures.

  9. My kiddos and I love exploring natural features in the country. I would love to get down to Devil’s Sinkhole State Park sometime!
    Heather Johnson recently posted…‘Our Young Guardians: Seven & Two’ Book ReviewMy Profile

  10. Wow! It looks like such a great outdoor experience. And, bats!! Oh my goodness! THe kids must have loved being at Devils Sinkhole State Park.

  11. This all looks so pretty and you seemed to have such a great experience. I am sure the kids loved this. Exploring and just get out there and experiencing new things is part of a being a kid and an adult. Oh man the bats thought probably would of scared me off a bit but I do like to do things that scare me from time to time.

  12. This is pretty cool through pictures, but I might be scared to go there in person LOL (Of course, here in Florida our houses get swallowed by sinkholes…which is even scarier LOL)

  13. I lived in Florida for many years! Sink holes definitely scare me lol…. this would be one neat place to visit though!!!

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