Our time in northern Minnesota included a day of sight seeing. We visited the Soudan Underground Mine in Soudan, Minnesota and took an underground tour traveling a half mile beneath the earth! This was Minnesota’s first iron ore mine. The mine opened in 1882 and stopped mining ore in 1962. The ore mine here was very special due to it’s high oxygen content. The iron ore was used to make high quality steel. On the tour we explored the last level that the miners worked.
Shortly afterward everyone was outfitted with a hard hat. We waited our turn to enter the very small elevator that took us deep into the earth. The elevator traveled at about ten miles per hour. Down, down, down into the deep, dark hole we went.
Our guide explained the miners work. At the end of her spiel the lights were all shut off so that we could feel the complete darkness only our party kind of spoiled it as one was wearing a glow in the dark jacket and two of my kids had on their Twinkle Toe tennis shoes. Oops! I couldn’t help but think I’d be very thankful for them if we got stuck down there, but thankfully we didn’t run into any trouble.
We retraced our journey back down the stairway, through the tunnel on the train, and the long elevator ride back up. Here is our family jsut before exiting the cave. Wave to the photo bombers in the back ground!
Being used to Texas caves, I didn’t think that the cave would be cold, but this one was around 50 degrees and jackets are recommended! So remember your sweaters or jackets when you head to the mine!