Ruby Falls

On Christmas Eve, we went to Ruby Falls with my parents. Out of all the major, popular attractions in the Chattanooga area, Ruby Falls was the last one for us to cross off.

We enjoyed Ruby Falls, however, there were both pros and cons.

Ruby Falls is an underground waterfall, located deep within Lookout Mountain. To get to the falls, you have to walk about half a mile through a cave system. Walking through the cave would have been more fun, if it hadn’t been crowded. This was most likely because we did this on Christmas Eve. Perhaps if someone went on a week day, they would have a better experience.

You have to walk through the cave single file, which doesn’t make for a good experience with the tour guide. We had to continuously walk through the cave, and the guide did not stop much to explain anything about the cave.

However, there was a video presentation at the start of the walk, where we learned about Leo Lambert, and his 1928 discovery of the cave and Ruby Falls, which he named after his wife. He went through the cave for 17 hours, much of that crawling, and he had no idea what he would discover. We did enjoy this presentation. But we felt like we missed out on learning more about caves in general.

As a photographer hobbyist, I found it frustrating to try to take photos inside of the cave. You had to take the photo quickly and move on, because as I mentioned earlier, we were continuously walking single file.

We only had to walk half a mile, but it seemed to take forever to get to our end point, because each time another tour group came through, we had to move up against the wall and let them pass.

Ruby Falls is the namesake and the highlight of the tour. When you first enter the large room, you can hear the waterfall, but barely see it. It is so dark in there! Thanks to a music and light show, about five minutes long, you can see Ruby Falls and be able to take some nice photos.

Leaving Ruby Falls was much easier, as our group had the right-away going back, and the other groups had to move over for us.

Also part of Ruby Falls is an overlook, which you get to by climbing a few floors of stairs. It offers a nice view point of Moccasin Bend.

Overall, I am glad I saw Ruby Falls. It’s no doubt impressive, and it’s neat to think that we were in the middle of Lookout Mountain, 1,120 feet below ground.

Ruby Falls itself is 80 feet high, and it’s pool is three feet deep. The water flows down through the mountain, and at some point it flows into the Tennessee River.

If you find yourself in Chattanooga, go visit Ruby Falls. You’ll be glad you did. Just don’t go on one of the busiest days of the year!

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