Wind Cave National Park

Wind Cave Fast Facts

How big is Wind Cave National Park?

Wind Cave covers a total area of 28,295 acres or 44 square miles.

How many people visit Wind Cave National Park?

709,001 people visited Wind Cave in 2021. A table showing all years can be found at Wind Cave Visitation Stats.

When was Wind Cave National Park created?

Wind Cave was made a national park on January 9, 1903.

What are the highest and lowest elevations in Wind Cave National Park?

Wind Cave’s lowest point is 3,559 feet at Beaver Creek. The highest point in Wind Cave is 5,013 feet at Rankin Ridge.

What time zone is Wind Cave National Park located in?

Wind Cave is in the Mountain Time Zone.

How much does it cost to enter Wind Cave National Park?

There is no entrance fee for Wind Cave National Park, but there are fees for cave tours.

Five Random Facts About Wind Cave

one Wind Cave is among the largest mapped caves in the world. 143 miles have been mapped to date, making it the third largest cave in the United States, and the seventh largest in the world.

two The third longest cave in the world is Jewel Cave, the centerpiece of Jewel Cave National Monument. It is only a 45 minute drive from Wind Cave. Jewel Cave is at 175 miles as of March 2015, and there is believed to be much more ahead.

three The name Wind Cave comes from the wind that naturally blows out (and in) of the small natural entrance to the cave. The direction the wind blows depends on barometric pressure. When pressure inside the cave exceeds the current air pressure outside, wind blows out.

four Wind Cave is the sixth oldest national park in the United States, created in 1903. It was the first national park in the world to be created to preserve underground features.

five Wind Cave is best known for its delicate calcite formations called “boxwork”. The vast majority of the world’s discovered boxwork, 95%, is found in Wind Cave.

Where is Wind Cave National Park?

Wind Cave National Park is located in southwestern South Dakota, with the city of Hot Springs just to the south of the park. Badlands National Park, South Dakota’s other national park, is a drive of about two hours to the north and east. Further directions and maps can be found at Getting to Wind Cave.