Enchanting Landscapes Beneath the Parks

The National Park Service manages some of the world's most amazing places. This includes over 4,700 caves with at least four of these that extend for more than 135 miles and are so complex that the casual visitor would be lost among the hundreds of passages to choose from. This also includes karst, a type of landform where sinkholes, sinking streams, and springs are considered normal features and are indicative of the relationship found between the surface and the underground. 


caver on a rope line climbing a deep pit
Celebrate Cave Week!—June 2-8, 2024

Learn about about cave exploration and share your #CaveWeek with us. (Photo courtesy of Matt Tomlinson.)

caver near large gypsum cave feature
Explore Caves & Karst in the NPS

Caver lights up a gypsum chandelier in Lechuguilla Cave, Carlsbad Caverns N.P. (Photo © Dr. Jean K. Krejca, Zara Environmental LLC)

photo of a cave scientist examining rocks and fossils in a cave wall.
Cave Paleontology

Caves are important environments for the preservation of paleontological resources.

Last updated: March 28, 2024


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