Just west of the White Mountains sits a quirky roadside attraction. And from the fake polar bear out front, to fallow deer, and its large assortment of birds, it's one you won't soon forget.
"Almost 50 percent of people that come here come every year as a family type of thing," said Rob Arey of the Polar Caves.
But the big draw here is eight glacial caves; caves that have been here for the last 50,000 years.
"Basically these were formed when the glacier came through and dumped the rocks here," Arey said.
Rumney, New Hampshire's Polar Caves first opened to the public in 1922. Upwards of 80,000 people visit every year. It's one of the few places around where you can experience caving, whether you're 5 or 95.
"I've seen 95-year-old great-grandparents with the grandchildren, all the way through," Arey said.
One of the first stops on the self-guided tour is the ice cave, where the ice lasts until August. In the spring it can be 10 to 12 feet thick. But for many, the highlight is Fat Man's Misery. The entry to the cave is appropriately named, but once inside, it opens up into two spacious rooms. Area farmers once stored crops here and it was also believed to be a hiding place for Native Americans. Arrowheads, axe handles, and other artifacts have been found here over the years.
Polar Caves Park is also home to a large rock that some say is the largest glacially-deposited boulder in the world. It's 110 feet long, 50 feet high, and 75 feet thick.
"I thought if we had a slight earthquake they might just fall," said Ruth Oakman of Warfordsburg, Penn. "My number ain't up yet so it ain't going to happen today."
A trip to the caves also wouldn't be complete without attempting the lemon squeeze, a 14-inch thick passage that requires a little creativity.
Friday, May 24 2013 11:30 PM EDT2013-05-25 03:30:10 GMT
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Friday, May 24 2013 7:17 PM EDT2013-05-24 23:17:06 GMT
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Friday, May 24 2013 12:44 PM EDT2013-05-24 16:44:50 GMT
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Friday, May 24 2013 9:51 AM EDT2013-05-24 13:51:55 GMT
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Friday, May 24 2013 7:25 PM EDT2013-05-24 23:25:14 GMT
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Friday, May 24 2013 7:35 PM EDT2013-05-24 23:35:15 GMT
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