Learn About Carlsbad Caverns National Park

Carlsbad Caverns is a national park in southeastern New Mexico in the Chihuahuan Desert.

The cavern itself began taking shape millions of years ago.  The cave formations began forming over 500,000 years ago.

Stalactites are mineral formations that grow down from the cave ceiling.

Stalagmites are rock formations that grow up from the cave floor.

Stalactites have a “t” because they are on top. Stalagmites have a “g” because they are on the ground.

The park entrance fee is $15 per person. The cavern opens at 8:30 am and the last entrance into the cavern is at 2:30 pm.

The Natural Entrance Trail is very steep with many switchbacks.  It is considered strenuous.

The cavern is 750 feet underground and a 1.25 mile hike into the Big Room.

The Big Room Trail is also 1.25 miles, but is rated easy.

The temperature inside the cavern is always 56 degrees Fahrenheit.

The park does a fantastic job of providing handrails the entire way.

Flashlights are allowed, but not needed. The park does a good job of providing dim lights throughout the cavern.

In the cavern, voices carry.  Rangers ask that you whisper or use your quiet voice.

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