Situated in the southwest corner of New Mexico, in the rolling Guadelupe Mountains, is a modestly sized entrance to a cave whose massive interior dimensions and wonderful formations can not be fathomed from the surface. The place is partially known for its “bat flight” at dusk, when hundreds of thousands of bats spiral out of the cave and disperse into the desert to catch insects.
Of course I’m talking about the world famous Carlsbad Caverns National Park. A well established trail takes you down a number of switchbacks into the cave (there’s also an elevator option but this lets you see far less), into the recesses of this huge cavern where you’re treated to a wonderland of memorable rock formations, the result of much time and mineral-rich water seeping into an underground reservoir located below the cave. There are thousands of stalactites, stalagmites and columns of all sizes and shapes. The Park Service uses gentle lighting to bring out the details of the more interesting deposits, such as the one in this photo. It’s a little like walking in a fairy-tale land!
The park is remote and to see it you really need to plan a trip there. If you’re ever in Western Texas or eastern New Mexico, it’s well worth your time to stop here and spend a half day exploring this wonderland.
(Click on thumbnail to enlarge)
4 Responses to “Pic of the Week”. March 22, 2012. Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico