Part 0: Orientation
In the drawing below, look for the vertical shaft, the elevator. It is surrounded by a green, a blue and a red line. We are going to follow the green line past the "Boneyard" to the Kings Palace, then through the Papoose Room, the Queens Chamber, and back through the Kings Palace once again on the way to the Green Lake Room.
This is a Ranger-guided tour. There was a time it was a self-guided tour, but there is too much temptation here with the speleothems [cave formations] very close by, and some level (but fragile) ground between the trail and the speleothems.
People took liberties, trampled the fragile ground, touched nearby formations, a real no-no in caves, and some even broke off soda-straw pieces for souvenirs!
So it became a Ranger guided tour. Good.
On the morning I chose to do these pictures there was a dense fog just leaving the top of the ridge, and it had frozen during the night, so some plants were sporting ice-beards in shapes that reflected the prevailing west wind:
One large tree in front of the Carlsbad National Park Visitors Center was also (n)icely covered:
Did you notice the flag in the above photo? Maybe it will be easier to see in the next picture:
In my previous walks in and out of the caverns, I spent some time looking down into the Green Lake Room:
and getting closer could even see the Green Lake:
Walking past the Green Lake Room, I peeked down to the beginning of Kings Palace. I
So now, we actually go there!
We'll do it right, starting on the next page.
[Please remember on these cave pages that what you see in these photos is not what your eyes will see when you come here in person.
The camera had its lens open anywhere from 3 to 22 seconds to pull in enough light for it to register a photo.
You eyes simply don't do that!]
At this point, you have a choice!!
You can follow these photo pages, or you can download (click here) the same photos in a slide- show set to music that lasts less than 11 minutes.
Go to King's Palace (a)
Go to Papoose Room
Go to Queen's Chamber
Go to King's Palace (b)
Go to Green Lake Room
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