• Photo of the steep natural entrance of Carlsbad Caverns

    Carlsbad Caverns

    National Park New Mexico

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    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.

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Carlsbad Caverns and Guadalupe Mountains Implement Fire Restrictions

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Date: February 29, 2008
Contact: Bridget Litten, 575.785.3024
Contact: Fred Armstrong, 915.828.3251 ext. 251

With little measurable precipitation at Carlsbad Caverns and Guadalupe Mountains National Parks over the last few months, coupled with above average temperatures, high winds and low relative humidities, the fire danger at both parks is high.

While open fires are prohibited at all times within both parks, the following additional restrictions have been implemented due to this high fire danger:

  1. Smoking is not permitted in either park, except in closed vehicles or on non-flammable surfaces such as open paved parking lots or developed campsites away from flammable vegetation. All smoking on park trails is prohibited.
  2. Although grills and charcoal fires are normally permitted at the Rattlesnake Springs unit of Carlsbad Caverns National Park, during this time of high fire danger, charcoal fires and grills are prohibited at Rattlesnake Springs as well. The use of camp stoves with caution in developed and backcountry campsites is still permitted within Guadalupe Mountains National Park.

These restrictions are being put into effect due to the high fire danger in both parks and southeastern New Mexico and west Texas. Park visitors are advised to use extreme caution and report any hazardous situations or smoke to a park ranger. These restrictions will remain in effect until further notice.

Violators may be fined and held responsible for resource damage, injuries to people, and costs of fire suppression efforts.

Did You Know?

Soda straws in Carlsbad Cavern.

Most of the formations—or speleothems—found inside Carlsbad Cavern today were active and growing during the last ice age when instead of having a desert above the cave, there were pine forests.