Gentry Patterson in Haggard Cave 📷Bradley Jones
Gentry Patterson in Haggard Cave 📷Bradley Jones

Haggard Nature Preserve


Marion County, Tennessee
1,326 feet

Although the 20 acres of the Haggard Nature Preserve are primarily steep hillside, the property overlooking the Tennessee Rivernear the Tennessee-Alabama state line contains mature timber and serves as an important buffer for wildlife. The land encompassing the preserve was originally owned by the Haggard Family and was acquired through the dedicated efforts of Brad Long and Lesley Colton who led a crowd-sourcing fundraiser to donate the Preserve to the NSS in 2017.

Haggard Cave was discovered and surveyed by Mark Wolinsky and others in 1975. The cave has received minimal traffic and exists in a near-pristine and wild condition. It is surprisingly complex, with large cave passages. While it is suitable for those with good vertical experience, the low rope angles can be problematic. The cave was re-surveyed by Jon Zetterberg and cavers from the Dogwood City Grotto in 2018, which quadrupled the length to 5,815 feet.