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DANIEL CLIFTON • PICAYUNE EDITOR

BURNET — During the course of a regular Longhorn Cavern tour, it’s nearly impossible for visitors to set up tripods and other equipment to photographically explore the underground wonder.

So Longhorn Cavern State Park officials created a tour especially for folks looking to capture great photos of the cavern.

“You just don’t have time to set up equipment and take it down during the regular tour,” said Chris Utley of Longhorn Cavern State Park, 6211 Park Road 4 near Burnet. “But with this special tour, photographers will have the chance to do that. The tour is limited to the regular cavern tour area, so we won’t be going into the tighter spots.”

The next photographic tour is 8 a.m. July 19. Tickets are $45 a person and available at www.longhorncaverns.com by clicking on the “Tours” button at the top of the page. Visitors also can make reservations by calling (512) 756-4680 or (830) 598-2283.

The tour is limited to eight people. Utley said if somebody is interested in making the tour, but can’t this time around, he or she should continue to check the website for additional dates.

The photographic tour will last 3½-4 hours. During that time, photographers can explore the entire regular cavern and seek out those places they want to capture. With the tour designed specifically for photography, participants don’t have to fear being rushed to make the next stop.

Photographer Mark Stein will lead the tour.

Some of the places photographers can really explore with their cameras include the Crystal City, the Queen’s Throne, the Hall of Marble and the Eagles Wing. The cavern also has some bats, so photographers might get a chance to “shoot” a few of the flying mammals.

“It’s a real unique opportunity,” Utley said.

Along with the photographic tour, Longhorn Cavern State Park offers other speciality tours. If you’re a ghost hunter or just enjoy a “spooky” time, you might want to register for the paranormal tour, which is usually the last Saturday of the month. The next ones are July 26 at 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. Tickets are $25 per person and available through the park’s website or by calling the park.

The Austin Paranormal Group has studied Longhorn Cavern for paranormal activity and documented some. But find out for yourself if the cavern is haunted by joining a paranormal tour. You might become a believer.

Other tours include a biology tour and a geology tour. Go to the website to learn more about both as well.

“We offer a lot of different tours and activities,” Utley said.

daniel@thepicayune.com