The Not-So-Lazy Days of Summer

You might think that the summertime is the most popular time to visit Carlsbad Caverns National Park because it just so happens that all of the children are out of school. While it is probably true that this has something to do with the numbers of people that visit the park, it might be more likely that there is just not a better time of the year to visit the caverns.

For one thing, the days are much longer, which means that everyone has more time to enjoy everything that the park has to offer. Of course, the amount of sunlight left outside wontt matter at all once you are deep inside the caverns on one of the many cave tours that are available. In fact, the caverns are so imperfect to the sunlight that many of the tour guides will turn out all of the artificial lights and leave you in stark blackness for several minutes, just to show you how very far away the sunshine is.

The summer night sky just seems to be clear, too, which means that the summer months are the perfect time for the Celebrate the Night Sky and Star Parties. These are held once a month, and usually on the second Saturday. Once the sun goes down, you and your family can gather with other park goers to hear Ranger stories about astronomy, local folklore, and the nocturnal animals of the park. This only takes place during the summer months through October, so be sure to plan your Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico, vacation around one of the star parties.

Another popular summer activity is the Bat Flight Program. The bats are present from May through October, but they grow in numbers during the months of July and August. For one thing, the migration patterns of several different bat species seem to overlap so that many of them end up in the park during those two months. For another thing, all of the baby bats will finally be old enough to join the adult bats in flight. You can visit the park before sunrise to see the bats return home every morning, or you can attend a Ranger-led presentation in the evenings, just before the bats leave the caves. Either sight is amazing, but you can be sure that it is the best during the summer months because of the thousands of extra bats that join the flight.