Explore the most popular birding trails in Carlsbad Caverns National Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Did the natural entrance trail. Lots of switchbacks & steep! Wanted to do the other loop, but since the elevators were out we had to walk back up the way we came. Very strenuous.
The cave is fabulous. We've been in a lot of caves. This is the first one they just turn you loose without a tour. We were able to set our own pace.

Such a fun hike! No elevator service into the caverns so it was a great 800 feet descend but a workout hiking back up!! Was def worth it!! So neat!

GPS will not work inside the cavern, so forget about track recording. Otherwise a very nice, well maintained cave system. Walking up is not as difficult as it seems.

Amazing! We hiked in through the natural entrance and then did the full loop around the Big Room. Wish we would have had more time to do a guided tour of one of the other caves, but still well worth it.

A fabulous place. Check for guided tours when you get there. I checked on line and they looked sold out but was able to book one when I arrived. Walked down and took the elevator out. Walking down is highly recommended as it gives one an idea of how big it really is, how deep it is and how early explorers really encountered it. Very easy walk down. Highly recommended!!

It's almost unreal how big this cave is. Best cave I've ever been too.

best cave I've ever visited!

hiking
3 months ago

I went on this hike on Friday after cave tours in Carlsbad Caverns Natl Park. If you are going to spend the time taking the one way gravel scenic drive I suggest this hike. I did this and part of Rattlesnake Canyon, Rattlesnake is at stop 9/18 and then Juniper Ridge is stop 15/18 so it breaks it up for some nice hiking during the drive.
You follow cairns the whole way and it's a good steady climb, pay attention to the cairns, cacti, and get some nice panorama pics from the top. I also happened to see 5 deer and was able to watch them gallop and hop for about 200 yards out on the ridge, quite a sight.
HUGE winds as I got to the top of the ridge, bring an extra layer!

Your calves might hurt the next day but it's so worth it. the cave just goes on and on. amazing formations all the way. set your camera to dusk/ dawn without flash and the photos turn out great.

Was an awesome experience in this np cave.

quick and easy with a great view

elevator out and trail in its about 3 hours to hike it all

Pretty easy all through the caverns. The rock formations are spectacular. Definitely a once in the lifetime experience

How majestic!

Amazing

hiking
Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Mid December trip with a little snow on ground at top of mountain. Gorgeous drive up the mountain. We didn't have the extra hour to walk the path down into cave so we took elevator down. Breathtaking above and below throughout the cave. Historical markers tell you about early explorers! I cant imagine being in there with only a torch or lantern! I highly recommend this amazing cavern.

hiking
Monday, March 27, 2017

Thought this was a beautiful hike. Nobody else was on the trail, and the views were wonderful along the way and from the top.

walking
Monday, February 20, 2017

Simply amazing... like walking on another planet.

walking
Monday, February 20, 2017

Elevator broken, didn't care. Nasty hail storm on the surface. Thoughtful lighting inside the cave.

walking
Sunday, February 12, 2017

Gorgeous cavern!!!!! So many cool spots all over!

another planet

hiking
Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Always a great place to get away to. Wear good tennis shoes as the path can be damp and increase your risk for fall.

This cave is unreal! Definitely a must see. I went when the elevator was broken so the hike back up was killer but definitely worth it.

hiking
Thursday, August 18, 2016

Hiking in a cool cave is always good.

hiking
Monday, August 15, 2016

I'm tagging this as a hike because the elevator was broken when I went in early March. It was slightly difficult coming back up, but worth it. Gorgeous and eerie, smelled a bit musty but beautiful.

I have to say, I been in 10 or so caves, glad I did this one last. this place is outstanding!! Not sure any caves I go in after this will ever WOW me like this one did. It's just HUGE! We took the guided tour, then walked in the natural entrance, This is a must if you have the time, Very steep, do not think coming out would be lots of fun (you will feel it) lucky for most of us you can ride the elevator back up! By far my favorite cave of all time

walking
Sunday, August 07, 2016

My Grandma and Mother did this very cool trail back in or around 1986. What a beautiful trail. Clean and Ranger help who ever needs it. Loved the restaurant 775 ft. down. My Grandma could not do the hike so she took the elevator down and met us. There is radio listening device for the different areas you walk buy. We did take the elevator back up. The Queens room was blast. If you have a chance to go please do. You will not be disappointed.

hiking
Saturday, July 23, 2016

I just have to come back and do this trail at least once a year. I recommend you do not take the elevator get your money's worth. I recommend you arrange your hiking time to come up right before they close the cave so you can wait and see the bats come out. It's amazing.

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