CARLSBAD CAVERNS NATIONAL PARK

Between the brisket in Abilene Texas and the rack of ribs in Tuscan Arizona we visited Carlsbad Caverns National Park in New Mexico. The caverns are known for their bats which fly out in a huge swarm at dusk. It’s an incredible sight. I hope to see it one day. Unfortunately like many Americans, Canadians and others the bats go to Mexico for the winter. However, even without the bats the caverns are well worth a visit and are a great place to walk off some BBQ.

I don’t have much to say about the caverns that you can’t get from a more authoritative source on the net but I will say it is an amazingly large hole 750 feet below the crust of the earth. The ranger described it as equal in square feet to ten football fields. I’ve visited caves in the midwest and east but they don’t come close to the size of Carlsbad Caverns. Carlsbad even has bathrooms and a T-shirt shop in it’s depths. Cameras and flash units are allowed but it’s difficult to capture accurate color due in part to the variety of light sources the park service uses in the cave. I’ve included the best non-flash shots I could muster to give you some idea of what you’ll see.

Look how small that person to the right of center looks compared to the cavern and the stalagmite.

One other thing I want to mention is how inexpensive the hotels and fuel have been over the last few days. We’ve paid as little as $2.85 for a gallon of gas and have gotten 3 star hotels, i.e. Holiday Inn, Four Points… for as low as $39 dollars a night via Priceline. We’re used to sleeping in tents, hostels and “Hiker Trash” hotels so we’ve enjoyed the upgrade. The problem is it can be habit forming. As Sue said, “I could get use to these 3 stars”.

The T-shirt shop and cafe 750 feet below the earths surface.
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Categories: Hiking, Travel

Tags: , , , , ,

2 replies

  1. Tom & Sue,

    We’re glad you stopped by Carlsbad. We went there on our way to visit Flame in Texas last March and really enjoyed the time we were in the cavern. I agree that it is one of the nicest we have seen. If you get a chance stop by Karchaner Sp? Caverns near Benson AZ. They are amazing too . It’s been cold here for the past 4 or 5 days. But it is always sunny so that helps…just have to hike with more clothes on and stay below 4000′. Enjoying your blog a lot. Jeff & Joyce

    Sent from my iPhone

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