The Wonder of Carlsbad Caverns

Published on November 26, 2010 by

Inside Carlsbad Caverns

Carlsbad Caverns on Thanksgiving morning was a wondrous experience. First of all, most of the world was at home somewhere and not at the caverns. Second, my or my, how can I even describe how beautiful it was and the calm presence I felt walking through them.

Because there were so few people there on Thanksgiving morning, especially at 8:30, we had an opportunity to chat with some of the Park Rangers. I asked one about the presence I felt. She told me I was not the first to mention it to her. She then talked about the bats hibernating deep within and the crickets and bugs that were also in the caverns.

I was actually talking about a spiritual presence, but I didn't come out and say it. I was wondering what she experienced. When we walked into the caverns after getting off the elevator, the peace and calm was palpable. I couldn't believe the amazing beauty that was hidden below the mountains. How little we know what is beneath those peaks we see. How many caverns are waiting to be discovered?

We were warned about not touching anything in the caverns. One touch could "kill" one of the growing structures. The oils on fingers causes

minute changes within the minerals polishing them as they are touched. Just before you go down by elevator there is a sample of one of the structures that has been polished smooth by touching.

Just by walking in the below ground wonderland causes unintended consequences volunteers and professionals work to remedy. You know all that lint in the drier you have to empty on a regular basis? Think of how much lint there must be from tens of thousands of people walking along and releasing little bits of lint. These little bits of lint collect on the stalactites, stalagmites, "drapes," and columns that fill the caverns. Talk about dust bunnies!

The lighting is pretty dim in the Big Room. They used to have brighter lights, but the frequency of these lights were perfect for the growth of green algae on the walls. Now there is less lighting. One of the rangers told us there would be new LED lighting in the next couple of years that would really brighten up the caverns.

May you have the opportunity to walk through this beautiful cavern 700 feet below the mountain. There are other more strenuous tours you can take. Some require bright flashlights, crawling through tight places and steady feet. We enjoyed the glories of nature that we saw.


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