Whether you want your cave explored, excavated, researched, gated, or mapped... Call the Cave Experts!
Saving Caves Since 1951
The Underground Texas Grotto has been restoring Texas caves to their natural form and function since the capital was still our tallest building. Without the hard work of the UTG, Austin would have a tiny fraction of the caves it does now. But the caves we've restored are only a sliver of what's really out there. For every cave we know, there maybe ten or twenty more that we don't. We endeavor to continue educating, exploring, and conserving the natural heritage beneath our feet. Most of all, we are here to help introduce Central Texans to the wonders hidden under the ground they walk on every day. Want to help? Join us, tell us about your cave, or donate.
Why We Dig
Much of central Texas is built on top of Karst - the name given to the landscape that forms caves. That means not only is Austin filled with cavers, it is also filled with caves! If that comes as a surprise to you, that is because unfortunately, many of the caves themselves have been filled. For generations, ranchers, developers, and backhoe enthusiasts have been filling in caves. Their reasoning varied, but the results are the same. Thousands of caves have been destroyed. To the untrained eye, what was once a cave entrance is now unrecognizable. A trash-filled hole in the ground, a suspicious pile of rocks, or a low spot in the yard where the leaves settle and water disappears. To the digger's eye, that filled cave represents a wrong that can be corrected. Caves serve a vital role in our lives here in Austin, whether you know it or not. We rely on the Edwards Aquifer for drinking, swimming, and irrigating. When a cave is clogged, it cannot play its role in refilling the aquifer. The water meant for the cave is trapped on the surface, contributing to flooding and over time, occasionally culminates in sinkhole collapse. What's the solution? Call the cavers!
Karst walking is the process of methodically searching the landscape for Karst. This includes caves, sinkholes, and springs. The goal is to thoroughly canvas a property to gain an understanding of its hydrogeology and potential for caves. If you think you have a cave on your property, contact us and we can schedule a time to check it out. Keep in mind, a cave may not look like a cave if it has been filled in. If you have a low spot in the yard that never holds water or a small hole that blows air, you may have a filled-in cave! We can excavate and restore that feature to its natural form and function. Caves are sensitive, and so is the information about where they're located. For this reason, we are discreet, private, and professional. Or, as professional as cavers can be None of the information about what we find (archeology, paleontology, biology) will be shared unless the property owner is comfortable with it. If you would like to have your property karst walked for caves, fill out the contact form.