Cliff Cave Park
806 Cliff Cave Road
8 a.m. - 30 minutes past sunset
General Information / History
Cliff Cave, originally called “Indian Cave”, has a very interesting history. It is recorded that in 1749 John Baptiste D’Gamache, one of the French founders of St. Louis, received the cave and land in the Spanish Land Grant.
Later, during the 18th century, French fur trappers operated a tavern here for traders traveling the Mississippi River and the cave was used as a beer cellar. In 1868, the area was sold to Cliff Cave Wine Company that built the rock walls in the entrance that can still be seen today. In the late 1800s the cave also served as a recreation spot for volunteer soldiers from Jefferson Barracks who built a new saloon in the entrance.
The purchase of Cliff Cave property by St. Louis County Parks and Recreation was initiated as a result of the 1969 Bond Issue. Cliff Cave Park was officially opened to the public in the spring of 1977.
In October 2009 the cave was gated by St. Louis County Parks to protect not only the remaining archeological artifacts that may be inside, but a population of Indiana Bats (endangered species) that have made the cave their home. The cave is also home to Big Brown Bats, Little Brown Bats, Eastern Pipistrells, cave salamanders, isopods and other cave critters. The gates were a joint effort between Saint Louis County Department of Parks, Missouri Department of Conservation, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Bat Conservation International, the Missouri Karst and Cave Conservancy, and the Meramec Valley Spelunkers. Since the installation of the cave gate the populations of Indiana bats and other bat species have increased over the past couple of years.
Click here for more history on Cliff Cave Park
Features & Amenities
+ Fishing (Mississippi River)
+ Reservable Shelter