Bat Flight: Carlsbad, New Mexico

This was our second trip to Carlsbad, but our first time we didn’t get to see the bats fly out of the caverns at dusk so we wanted to try again and Carlsbad has a few other nice sights to see too.

We started with the Living Desert Zoo, a lovely little spot that hosts a number of animals that can no longer survive in the wild.

Then, to cool off, we drove to Sitting Bull Falls where we had heard there was a short hike and a swimming hole. It was just what we needed except that we saw a leech, but we’re all trying to pretend that didn’t happen (shudder cringe shiver).

The bat flight at Carlsbad Caverns was amazing, nothing like what I imagined. We sat for almost an hour in an amphitheater with over a hundred completely silent humans. The flow of bats coming out of the cave was non stop. We could hear the bats wings beating as they came out, cycloning around the entrance before flying up and away from the sun. At one point, there was a long line of bats all the way to the horizon. Really amazing. We weren’t allowed to take pictures so all we got was this:

The following day, we drove back to hike through the caverns. It was packed with humans who were not quite as magical as the night before. Everyone seemed to be stomping through the caverns ignoring the park rangers request that we use library voices, but we had a good time despite the ruckus.

To wrap up our time in Carlsbad we hit Brantley Lake State Park to see about catching some fish. The fishing wasn’t great, but the water was wonderful.

The clouds were doing their level best to impress as well:

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