• Photo of the steep natural entrance of Carlsbad Caverns

    Carlsbad Caverns

    National Park New Mexico

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  • Cave Lighting Project

    We are undergoing a year-long lighting project in the cavern. Please be aware of caution tape along pathways inside the cave and use due care.

  • Scenic Loop Road Closed

    The 9-mile scenic Loop Road (Desert Drive) is closed due to weather damage. The road will reopen as soon as repairs are done. This scenic road does not affect road access to the visitor center or the cave.

Elementary School Lesson Plans

About Bats, Caves, & Deserts is an elementary curriculum guide for teachers which gives basic background information on the bats, caves, and deserts, followed by supplemental activities to enrich each unit. Background information is provided on a variety of park themes. Activities relating to history,geology, bats, animals, plants, fire, and stewardship are included.

Middle School Lesson Plans

Caves, Canyon, Cactus, & Critters is a curriculum guide designed to assist in teaching about geology. While geared toward the geology of Carlsbad Caverns National Park, background material is provided to make it applicable to other parts of the country as well. The curriculum is broken into six units focusing on the development of the Delaware Basin and Capitan Reef, plate tectonics, uplift and mountain building, the role of anaerobic bacteria in the formation of caves in Carlsbad Caverns National Park, weathering and erosion, and the origin of various cave formations.

The Middle School Ecology Curriculum is designed to assist in teaching about certain aspects of life sciences, with information applicable anywhere in the country. Specific topics covered include the biosphere, soil, water, and fire.

The Middle School Biology Curriculum explores plant and animal life sciences. It focuses on the similarities and differences in plant and animal cell structure, the basic parts and functions of plants, leaves, and flowers, animal classification, and animal adaptations for life in the desert.

High School Lesson Plans

The Chihuahuan Desert Lab (CDL) is a comprehensive program that includes a resource-based curriculum and provides opportunities for students to participate in resource monitoring and stewardship activities at Carlsbad Caverns and Guadalupe Mountains national parks. Focus topics include water quality monitoring of human impact, cave swallows, reintroduction and monitoring of prairie dog populations, revegetation of Chihuahuan Desert grassland ecosystem, and geographical information and global positioning systems (GIS and GPS).

The High School Geology Curriculum emphasizes the regional geology of Carlsbad Caverns National Park and cavern formation; it also provides a general overview of geologic history and processes. Lessons include field trip trips to the Permian strata and caverns in conjunction with hands-on, introductory college-style laboratories to provide background geologic concepts. A glossary, maps, photos, and additional resources are also provided.

Lesson Plans in Spanish

Sobre Cuevas Murcielagos y Desierto

Manual de Laboratoria del Desierto de Chihuahua

Ciencias de La Vida-Biologia

Las Ciencias de La Vida-Ecologia

Cuevas Cañones Cactus y Animalitos-Geologia