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View Full Version : carlsbad caverns, new mexico


tony hipchest
04-03-2006, 11:30 AM
http://images.search.yahoo.com/search/images?p=Carlsbad+Caverns&ei=UTF-8&b=1

has anyone heard of or been here? i went for the 1st time in about 20 years. my 1st visit as an adult so i trully appreciated it. if you EVER get the chance, make the stop. it is completely awesome! in the link of photos if you look at the mouth of the cave it is HUGE. about 50 feet high and 75 feet wide. when you enter you walk down a windy zigzagging path. it is too steep just to walk straight down. but it is a safe path. my 3 year old walked the whole way down with me just holding her hand. you walk down for about 45 min. to an hour, and over an 800 foot descent until you fianally reach "the big room", which is i believe the largest underground chamber in the world. to give you perspective of how big the "big room" is, you can put 13 football fields down there. the self guided tour path runs the perimeter of the big room and can take anywhere from 2-4 hours to walk, depending on how long you stay and look, take picts etc. you can also take an elevator 80 stories down directly to the big room and begin the tour there but you really dont grasp the magnitude unless you go through the natural enterance.

there is an ampitheater at the mouth of the cave, cause during the spring and summer months, at dusk, a huge tornado like, black cloud of millions of bats come flying out to go eat. you can sit there and watch them pour out right above you. the bats live in a seperate smaller chamber than the one the tour goes through. i have yet to witness the bat flight, but it is what led some cowboy in 1898 to explore for this giant hole in the middle of nowhere, new mexico. he figured with a cloud of bats that huge (that could be seen for miles) there must be a pretty big hole. thats an understatement.

did you know bat shit is like gold to farmers? it is the most valuable and best fertilizer in the world.

Suitanim
04-03-2006, 12:10 PM
The nice thing about all those bats is that they eat up several times their weight in insects, so no bugs!

Guano smells like ammonia, though, so I bet those caves are a tad on the smelly side...

tony hipchest
04-03-2006, 12:25 PM
The nice thing about all those bats is that they eat up several times their weight in insects, so no bugs!

Guano smells like ammonia, though, so I bet those caves are a tad on the smelly side...when you first walk in its almost overpowering, then in about 5 minutes i didnt even notice it. i actually kindof like that dank musty earthy smell. it reminds me of my grandparents cellar in the burgh!

HburgXL06
04-03-2006, 01:54 PM
The nice thing about all those bats is that they eat up several times their weight in insects, so no bugs!

Guano smells like ammonia, though, so I bet those caves are a tad on the smelly side...

I watched an episode of "Dirty Jobs" on Discovery Channel where the host went with this guy in some cave full of 40,000 bats. The floors where covered in guano and some places were soft and the host fell in knee deep in one. The ammonia was so bad there they had to wear breathing masks and have gauges to check the ammonia levels so that they don't die! It's crazy!

BuFu

83-Steelers-43
04-03-2006, 03:03 PM
Ummm....I think I'll stick with the beach.

Ambridge
04-03-2006, 03:13 PM
Reminds me of Luray Caverns here in Virginia which is an interesting place to check out.

All this talk about guano is making me think of Ace Ventura-When Nature Calls.
Bumblebee Tuna!

83-Steelers-43
04-03-2006, 03:16 PM
Reminds me of Luray Caverns here in Virginia which is an interesting place to check out.

All this talk about guano is making me think of Ace Ventura-When Nature Calls.
Bumblebee Tuna!

I have driven past the Luray Caverns (Civil War site seeing). Ex-girlfriend used to always go there. Very, very beautiful area.