• Photo of the steep natural entrance of Carlsbad Caverns

    Carlsbad Caverns

    National Park New Mexico

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  • Scenic Loop Road Closed

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

  • All Camping & Backcountry Caving Suspended Until Further Notice

    All camping and backcountry/recreational caving in the park has been suspended until further notice due to flood damage on backcountry roads and trails.

Carlsbad Caverns Awaits Results of Air Tests to Reopen Visitor Center and Tours

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Date: July 24, 2012
Contact: Paula Bauer

While a temporary closure of the park's visitor center and cave tours remains in effect, visitors planning a trip to Carlsbad Caverns National Park are encouraged to call 575-785-2232 for the latest information. The bat flight programs at dusk at the bat flight amphitheater will continue nightly. The closure began yesterday (Monday) afternoon after it was discovered that vapors from chemicals used by contractors renovating the park's elevators had seeped into the park's visitor center. Park facilities have been closed as a precaution until environmental testing confirms they are safe.

"The safety for both our visitors and employees is always our first priority," explained Carlsbad Caverns National Park Superintendent John Benjamin. "An industrial hygienist tested the air in several areas, and we are waiting on the results and assessment of risk. Since the facilities could reopen at any time, visitors should call the park before driving out." A specific date or time has not yet been established for the reopening of the cave and the visitor center.

For more information about recreational activities in the park and natural and cultural resources, visit the park's website: www.nps.gov/cave or call 575-785-2232.

Did You Know?

Permian ocean bottom.

The limestone rock that holds Carlsbad Cavern is full of ocean fossil plants and animals from a time before the dinosaurs when the southeastern corner of New Mexico was a coastline similar to the Florida Keys.