Mammoth Cave, Fort Knox, and Bourbon Country

No pictures! Just a rant!

Went to Mammoth Cave. This is a cavers cave. I couldn't really recommend this cave, unless you really are into them. It might be the biggest cave in the world, but you can't really see that in a two hour tour. It's not even all that well decorated on the tourist accessible stuff. This really is not a thrillingly attractive cave to go and visit.

Also, this place had the most ridiculous homeland security bullshit I'd ever seen. (And I've seen some pretty silly stuff) You weren't allowed to take camera bags, handbags, or backpacks of any sort into the visitor center. The carpark was ok, the toilets were ok, but not inside. It wasn't like it was small inside or anything, they just came up with this somehow. It had been like this all summer.

They got quite testy when I asked them what it was for, and all they could reply was homeland security. Telling them none of the other cave national park/monuments had it, and certainly none of the other national parks didn't help. They still couldn't give even the slightest hint of a reason behind it. I wouldn't mind if they just acknowledged that they didn't know and perhaps even that they didn't agree with it, but to rabidly defend something they can't explain is pathetic.

They were also the most ill informed rangers I'd ever met. They couldn't even tell me if one of their campgrounds was still open for the season, and suggested that I drive out there to find out. You suck!

On the bright side, the campground was still open, and it was beside one of the few remaining free river ferries. This was a boat that runs back and forth on a cable, with space for about two cars, free, and 24/7. And I didn't take a picture of it. Or any of this area. Not really sure why. It was rather nifty. Lots of fallen leaves, hollows everywhere (from slumped limestone) and green lushness.

Also tried visiting Fort Knox. Never found the visitor center, and you certainly aren't allowed anywhere near the actual thing. More borderpatrol-esque questioning. Who would have put the Patton Museum of Armour INSIDE the military base. Don't even think about going to a musem unless your papers are in order :)

This was a man's museum alright. Technical details everywhere, low on that boring story stuff, and lots and lots and lots of different tanks. Brought back from all theatres of war. Pretty cool really.

Also visited a couple of Bourbon Distillerys. Jim Beam had tastings, but was pretty lame really. Maker's Mark had no tastings, but is a FAR superior tour. (Both are free by the way) A very comprehensive tour, including sticking your finger in various ages of mash and tasting them as they ferment. (age here means 2hours to 3 days, not years) Learnt some of the rules that make bourbon bourbon and not whiskey. and not Scotch. And not whisky. :) (corn, charred barrels, and made in america are the key elements)