Sleeping in is good, after all, it is a vacation. Once we got moving we loaded the car up and headed out to Carlsbad to spend some time under ground. We got in with plenty of time to spare and I scored a sweet shirt for Reese in the gift shop before we took the elevator down. We met up with the ranger who was our guide for the King’s Room tour. The tour was definitely worth the extra money, and if you’re going to do it, book it early and on-line as everything was sold out by the time we got there. The tour was about an hour and a half long and took us to parts of the cave system which are not part of the regular self-guided tour. In the Queen’s Chambers room the ranger did a blackout, and let me tell you, it’s eerie being in something that dark. After we got through with it we took a short break and then did the self guided tour through the great room and other chambers. It was really amazing, and I’m already planning a return trip with a tripod for some better shots.
We spent more time underground than we’d planned and instead of heading back we grabbed dinner in the cafe and went over to the open air theater to watch the bats leave for the night. If you’re going to go to Carlsbad Caverns, make sure you stick around for it. It was really amazing to see all of the bats, and there were a lot more than I thought there would be. We stuck around for about 45 minutes and they were still coming, but alas we needed to get back for the drive home tomorrow, so we hit the road back to Artesia.