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Russell Cave National Monument, Bridgeport

3.8
#30 of 62 in Nature in Alabama
National Park · Nature / Park
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Russell Cave National Monument is a U.S. National Monument in northeastern Alabama, United States, close to the town of Bridgeport. The monument was established on May 11, 1961, when 310 acres (1.3 km2) of land were donated by the National Geographic Society to the American people. It is now administered and maintained by the National Park Service. The National Monument was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on October 15, 1966.

Russell Cave has an exceptionally large main entrance, which was used for thousands of years as a shelter by cultures of prehistoric Indians, from approximately 6500 BCE, the period of earliest-known human settlement in the southeastern United States, to 1650 CE and the period of European colonization. It is believed to have primarily served as a seasonal winter shelter. The people relied on the surrounding forest to gather produce and hunt for game and fish, stone and game for tools, and wood fuel for fires. Guided tours of the shelter area are available.
With a mapped length of 7.2 miles (11.6 km), Russell Cave is the third-longest mapped cave in Alabama. It is ranked 90th on the United States Long Cave List, and is listed as number 314 on the World Long Cave List. Caving is no longer allowed inside the cave. The grounds offer trails for walking, and the area is a station on the North Alabama Birding Trail.
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Russell Cave National Monument reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.0
102 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • Not much to see at the cave except a few informational plaques, the hike is nice A small museum at the visitor center with bathrooms. There is a birding trail at the monument. 
    Not much to see at the cave except a few informational plaques, the hike is nice A small museum at the visitor center with bathrooms. There is a birding trail at the monument.  more »
  • The highlight of the Russel Cave monument is not the cave, it's the very short and very steep trail, which started as a blacktop paved trail (though now well populated by massy material that is slick....  more
    The highlight of the Russel Cave monument is not the cave, it's the very short and very steep trail, which started as a blacktop paved trail (though now well populated by massy material that is slick....  more »
Google
  • We were so close to the cave so we thought we would stop by. I wanted to get my cancellation stamp from the office and talk a bit about the history. Unfortunately, Covid requirements had changed and we did not have masks with us. But the Park Ranger allowed me to stamp my book and we left the building. We hiked toward the cave. The hike is a pleasant walk on a raised path. I would imagine it could be wheelchair accessible. The cave is closed off but you can see where they are in the process of exploring the cave floor. They have large sifting devices there to find the small particles that might be missed. It was a quiet walk and empty of all people. It was just us and nature. Perfect Saturday morning!
  • I enjoyed this small park as it has a lot of history that dates back way before recorded time! Definitely worth stopping and spending an hour or so! You definitely feel the temperature change while in the cave!

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