Carlsbad Caverns & Guadalupe Mountains

We are taking you with us on a 3 day weekend getaway to Carlsbad Caverns and Guadalupe Mountains National Park.

Located in New Mexico and Texas, these two parks are only an hour apart, although they are in different states, which makes it easy to experience both of them on a weekend trip.

Carlsbad Caverns is a massive cave system you can walk through and splunk down on guided tours. It is amazing walking around the huge underground caverns to see the many, many stalagmites and stalactites. It’s truly impressive how massive this natural formation is. And the cave stays a cool 58 degrees F no matter what time of year making this a great place to visit even during the extreme temperatures of summer.

Guadalupe Mountains is a vast and open rocky mountain park with hikes and peaks that cannot be missed when in the area.

In this squad chat, we cover:

  • Tips for Visiting Carlsbad Caverns National Park
  • Beautiful cave views and formations on the Big Room Trail 
  • Natural Entrance Trail for a more adventurous experience
  • Lower Cave Tour in Carlsbad Caverns
  • Devil’s Hall Trail in Guadalupe Mountains National Park 
  • El Paisa Taqueria for the best tacos in Albuquerque 
  • Driving through Roswell, New Mexico

Carlsbad Caverns and Guadalupe Mountains National Park

4 (55s):
Welcome to this weeks episode of the Travel Squad podcast. Today, we are taking you with us on a three day weekend getaway to Carlsbad Caverns National Park and Guadalupe Mountains, National Park for my birthday weekend. Happy Birthday,

1 (1m 10s):
Happy birthday. As you guys already know, we love to explore the national parks and it is on our bucket list to visit them all. So we got to cross off two on this trip. It’s also on our bucket list to visit all 50 states. And again, over this weekend getaway, we were able to scratch off two more states because Carlsbad Caverns is in New Mexico and Guadalupe Mountains is in Texas.

3 (1m 33s):
Well, this was not a squad trip. Carlsbad Caverns looks pretty cool, and I can’t wait to hear about it, but I was not included on this trip because this was like Jamal said his birthday trip. And Brittany added on some time to meet up with your sister and family in Dallas.

2 (1m 49s):
Kim don’t feel too bad because my invite got lost in the mail as well. But Jamal Felice Navi Bab

4 (1m 56s):
Cross. Yes.

2 (1m 58s):
All right guys. So take it away. Let us know what happened. So

1 (2m 1s):
We left San Diego on Thursday after work. We flew into Albuquerque New Mexico, and we stayed there overnight before driving to Carlsbad Caverns. This was Jamal’s birthday.

4 (2m 12s):
Yeah. Thursday was my birthday, both Brittany and I worked that day. We had the last flight out of San Diego direct to Albuquerque and got in that Thursday night. And we spent the night and woke up. And when we woke up, we went back to the airport to pick up our rental car for our five hour drive to Carlsbad Caverns, which is in the Southern portion of New Mexico where Albuquerque is more north. So it was a five-hour drive to get to Carlsbad Caverns.

1 (2m 42s):
I don’t know if Zayna, you know, this or Kim, you know this, but Jamal was giving me shit, the entire plane ride and drive because he did not want to go on this trip. Like he says, every year, he doesn’t want me to plan anything for his birthday. And every year I plan something for his birthday and usually involves hiking. So he did not look like a happy camper at all. At the beginning portion of this trip

4 (3m 5s):
And Dennis untrue, I had a very positive attitude on the plane and for the trip I, my bad attitude was maybe before, when you were telling me you were trying to plan something. And again, I would just want to reiterate, I always tell you, I would like to one year just relax and do nothing on my birthday and you take over and don’t even give me my birthday wish, but that’s neither here nor

1 (3m 27s):
There a hundred birthday. I will let you rest.

4 (3m 31s):
You’ll kill me by that. And I’m sure.

1 (3m 33s):
So tell us about the drive to Carlsbad.

4 (3m 36s):
So New Mexico, very desolate state. Very beautiful though. Mind you, I mean, we’ve said this before in previous episodes, the desert really is beautiful. There’s some majestic beauty about it. Some people could see it and think it’s barren, but definitely beautiful, but there is not a lot out there. And actually on this drive, I ended up getting a ticket. Believe it or not. I got an out of state ticket for speeding so

2 (4m 3s):
Fast. Where you

4 (4m 4s):
Going? Well,

3 (4m 5s):
Do you know why I pulled you over, sir? Yeah,

4 (4m 8s):
I was speeding, but I don’t think I told the officer that, but anyway, to your point, Zen of how fast I was going, we’re out in the middle of nowhere and the New Mexico desert. And we’re no longer on the interstate. We’re on a New Mexico state highway, which is, you know, a little one lane road traffic each way in each direction. And a lot of those isolated roads pass through little towns, right? And it’s still part of the highway, even though it goes through town and there may be stoplight, stop signs, et cetera. And we’re coming up on this town and I see that they’re reducing the speed limit cause we’re coming up to a town. And then it goes from, you know, 65 to 55 to 45.

4 (4m 48s):
And I could see the signs and I am in the process of starting to slow down. Granted, I could probably have slowed down a lot quicker than I did, but I was still well outside the town limits or where there was actual buildings of the town. And that’s actually where the cop was. He was hanging out over there on the front side, apparently had his radar gun. And as I’m in the process of slowing down from going my 65 miles an hour, I’m probably still at 60 in the 45 zone, but I’m working my way to slowing down. And he just flipped on his lights, pulled me over didn’t care that he saw that my birthday was the day before he just decided he wanted to give me an out-of-state ticket. I didn’t want to fight it, but I’m like, dude, like I’m clearly slowing down.

4 (5m 29s):
You have these signs, honestly, within a hundred feet of each other, a 10 mile difference, like slowing down.

3 (5m 36s):

4 (5m 37s):
So Brittany didn’t let me live that one down. And I looked at her and I said, well, this inexpensive trip has just gotten more expensive and technically it’s your fault. Cause I wouldn’t have gotten this ticket if we stayed home.

2 (5m 47s):
So you actually, you bring up a good point though. So how do you deal with out of state tickets?

4 (5m 52s):
Really, really good point. I learned that myself. I was expecting it to be expensive. Cause tickets here in California are ridiculously expensive and he told me, he’s like, yeah, I mean, you can appeal it and you would have a phone call with a judge or you can just plead no contest and pay the ticket. And I said, well, how much is the ticket? And he’s like, it’s $86. I was like, I’ll just pay the ticket because I was expecting like a $300 speeding ticket price like you have here in California.

1 (6m 19s):
Yeah. So he was able to just go online, pay the ticket and have it set and done

3 (6m 24s):
On your permanent record.

4 (6m 25s):
I don’t think so. I actually didn’t have any points go against me on my insurance. No increase. I wonder if, since they’re out of state and it’s speeding and you just kind of settle it, I didn’t have to go to traffic school. I didn’t have to do anything, but I don’t know if that’s out of the norm necessarily. So that was the only unfortunate thing about this. Awesome. We can get away was that ticket, but I did get a little bit more excited as we continued on because we drove through Roswell New Mexico, which is famous for its local lore. Yeah. Famous for its aliens.

3 (6m 56s):
Did you see any aliens when you were in the area?

4 (6m 57s):
We saw several on the top of the light posts.

1 (7m 0s):
All of the light posts on the main road through the city were shaped like little alien heads. Aw. And so when you drive down the street, you can also see billboards for alien museums and like go to the UFO site potentially. So they amp it up in this area.

4 (7m 18s):
Yeah. So for a lot of people who don’t know Roswell New Mexico is very famous for the local Lord that a alien spaceship actually crashed in Roswell in the 1950s and the town still talks about it, hypes it up. And it’s a whole tourist industry out there. I really wanted to stop. I’m really into UFO’s. I don’t need to necessarily go into my beliefs on it, but I think the topic is so, so fascinating and we just didn’t stop for whatever reason, because we were on our way to Carlsbad Caverns. But the reason why people truly do believe that an alien spaceship crashed is in the 1950s when it happened, the U S government actually came out and said, yes, an alien spaceship has crashed.

4 (8m 2s):
They publish that information. And the paper confirmed that an air force general confirmed this. And then they retracted the story and said, no, no, no, no. It was just a weather balloon that crash that was wrong. But originally when the story was aired, it was confirmed and reported by an air force general or somebody high up in the air force that yes, it was a UFO. So did it happen? Did it not? I don’t know, but it makes for an exciting story.

1 (8m 26s):
Yeah. And that area draws tons of tourists due to the amount of alien paraphernalia they have in the city. So

3 (8m 32s):
Was that it’s only UFO sighting or have there been others?

4 (8m 36s):
I don’t know if they have had any more sightings in that area. I wouldn’t be surprised, but it is said that, of that crash, they retrieved the crashed spaceship and there were supposedly two aliens that were alive that they retrieved. Is it true? Is it not? I don’t know. Probably. I mean, who knows, but I wish we had time to stop. Unfortunately we didn’t, but we continued on through Roswell and made our way to Carlsbad Caverns.

1 (9m 2s):
Yeah. So we were staying in a town called Carlsbad and just a squad tip is there is no cell reception on some parts of this drive. So make sure again, I’ve said this before to download offline maps. Also this happened to be the same weekend that my sister was moving to Dallas, Texas, and she was driving there. She was driving there with my niece.

4 (9m 24s):
They used to live in Los Angeles.

1 (9m 26s):
Yeah. So it was going to be a long drive for them. And so they were breaking it up in segments. And so one of the stops that she was going to make was to El Paso to visit one of our cousins, Rita Mae and her now husband Jose said they stopped in El Paso. And I convinced all of them to meet us at Carlsbad Caverns because it’s only about a two and a half hour drive from their hometown. So we kind of told them, we think we’re going to be there at approximately 1:00 PM. And they said that they would aim to do the same, which was really great because we had no cell service at Carlsbad Caverns. So we just literally had to meet up at the visitor center and just hope that each other was there at approximately the 1:00 PM time.

4 (10m 10s):
And we actually happen to all arrive around that time. So it worked out perfect. Now we’ve mentioned it before, we’re on our way to Carlsbad Caverns, but we haven’t even really talked about what Carlsbad Caverns is.

2 (10m 22s):
I personally got confused because in north county of San Diego, we have a city called Carlsbad. So when you said you were going to Carlsbad Caverns and you were getting a hotel or what not, I thought to myself, well, why don’t you just come home? Really I’m serious.

4 (10m 37s):
So we all arrived there at the same time and we’ve been mentioning Carlsbad Caverns, but we haven’t really talked about what it is. It is a giant cave that they have underground in the Southern desert portion of New Mexico. And so the visitor center like any National Park is where people do their souvenir shopping. You could buy your tickets, et cetera. But from the visitor center, they have a giant elevator that takes you down about 75 stories into the cave. Now the entrance into Carlsbad Caverns is $15 per person and year round in the cave. It’s always 56 degrees Fahrenheit.

4 (11m 17s):
And it’s humid in there.

1 (11m 19s):
That was one of the draws on why I wanted to go for Jamal’s birthday is because inside the cavern in the cave, it is a constant temperature. So even though outside in the summer, it’s very, very hot inside of the cave. It’s nice and cool. And so that was a really big draw for me and why we can complete it over Jamal’s birthday weekend, which is in July, most caves have a consistent cave temperature all year round.

4 (11m 43s):
And like I said, from the visitor center, they do have the elevator that takes you down into the cave. I thought that was so unique. I’ve never been to a National Park where, when I’m in the visitor center, I have to take an elevator to even get into the park because the whole top of the park, there’s not really anything there to see. It’s all desert. You have to take that elevator down. There is a Natural Entrance to the cave, which you can hike down, which we’ll talk about a little bit later, but most people don’t do that. They take the elevator from the visitor center where you buy your tickets.

1 (12m 11s):
And so inside of the cave, of course, you’re going to see magnificent cave structures. And one thing I want to point out is you are going to be tempted to touch them, but please do not touch the natural calcite structures and formations inside just the oil on people’s hands can ruin and cause the formation to stop for me. Wow. Yeah, because when people put their hands on it, it puts a layer of oil on the structure and then it can ruin all of the structures for the future because they’re still forming.

2 (12m 41s):
Oh yeah. When I was in beliefs and I went through the old Mayan caves, one of the absolute requirements was you had to have socks because when we eventually got to the place where we climbed the rocks, they didn’t want your natural oils on the rocks. Like you had to have socks in order to do the

4 (12m 57s):
Yeah. So these calcite formations that Brittany is talking about is the still lag mites and still lag tights. So just enormous enormous structures. I mean, you go in there, you see photos of caves and until you really see it in person, it just doesn’t do it any justice. I mean, I could sit here for 30 minutes trying to just describe to you how beautiful it is and I’ll say it again. It was beautiful, but you have to see these things in person to really understand. It’s just so amazing.

1 (13m 24s):
How do you remember what is a stalagmite versus a Stalag tight? Yeah.

4 (13m 28s):
Yeah. Good question. They’re all really the same thing. They’re those calcite formations and pillars, but still lag might grows from the ground up and it’s still lag tight grows from the ceiling down. And how I remember that is it has to hold tight to the ceiling so that it doesn’t fall. So stalactite is what’s on top stalagmites are the ones on bottom.

2 (13m 51s):
Oh, there you go. And it has to be mighty to push through the ground.

4 (13m 54s):
I never thought about it that way. My geography teacher and geology teacher, they taught me that tight as the way to remember it. So that’s how I remember it. Hold tight to the ceiling.

1 (14m 3s):
And there’s lots of different calcite structures depending on how the water runs. So if the water runs a long, a cave wall, it can form structures called drapes or curtains. They have ones that look like popcorn. They have other ones that look like soda straws. It’s like the start of a Stalag tight typically.

4 (14m 22s):
Yeah. And how and why these things form is simply because all the water that’s coming through, the limestone cave structure, it is creating calcium deposits and those calcite deposits eventually once the water drains will eventually harden up. So it’s millions of years to create those layers coming down for the Stalag tights or for this to lag mites.

1 (14m 45s):
I hear that if you walk under a still lag tight structure and water drips onto you, it’s good luck. Have you guys heard that? I have

2 (14m 52s):
Not. Did you guys have watered?

4 (14m 53s):
I’ve had water drip on me several times. I should be showered in good luck.

1 (14m 58s):
I’ve had it too as well,

4 (14m 60s):
Because this is not my first time in a cave, but it’s the first time in a cave. This grant that I really, really remember. And it’s just so impressive. So when you go down the elevator, you are in, what’s called the big room and they have a specific trail that you can take around the big room. And it’s just one large open area.

1 (15m 22s):
Yeah. The big room is the largest single cave chamber by volume in north America. And as we mentioned on our Adriatic coast trip, we have mentioned that we went to another cave in Europe, which was the single largest cave chamber in Europe by volume. So Jamal and I have visited both the largest single cave chamber in north America and Europe.

4 (15m 42s):
Yeah. And the trail around the big room is about one and a quarter miles and it’s relatively flat and you can take the elevator up and down. So it is handicap accessible. And we did see some people on the trail that were in wheelchairs. So it is paved and it is handicap accessible. And again, relatively flat,

2 (16m 2s):
It’s not like a tour. Is it? You can go off and explore on your own.

4 (16m 6s):
It’s not like a tour at all.

2 (16m 8s):
So wait, so you’re 75 stories down there. So like, do they have bathrooms or do you have to go to the bathroom outside?

1 (16m 14s):
Great question. So they do have bathrooms in the visitor center before you get into the elevator. But if you got to go while you’re in the cave itself right next to the elevator, they do have a bathroom. So there’s only one bathroom in the whole cave area. And it’s actually really cool because it’s built in part of the cave. Cool.

2 (16m 33s):
Interesting. Because it’s so far down. So I’m like modern plumbing and water.

4 (16m 37s):
Yeah. No really good question. They somehow did that and there are restrooms down inside of the cave.

2 (16m 43s):
So did you guys like walk up at all the 75 stories? Yeah.

4 (16m 46s):
So it turned into an easy day as you know it. So like Brittany said, we were with her sister, our niece, and then Brittany’s cousin. And at the time her fiance now her husband, since they live in El Paso and again, Brittany sister was moving to Dallas. It just worked out perfect for that timing. So we all did the big room trail. And as I mentioned earlier, there is a Natural Entrance to the cave. So you can go from outside without taking the elevator and they have a Natural Entrance Trail that comes into it. Well, instead of taking the elevator back up after we did the loop, we hiked our way out the Natural Entrance.

1 (17m 24s):
Yeah. And what I want to say too is while you’re on the loop and on the Natural Entrance, there are little posts of what structures you’re seeing. It tells about the history. It tells about the formation. So even though you’re on your own, it is interactive and you can learn a lot about what you’re seeing. It’s not just like you look at it and not know what’s going on. So the Natural Entrance, we took that trail. It’s about a mile and a quarter and it’s very steep. So like we said, we went down the elevator that was 75 stories down. So just imagine hiking, that ends up being about 800 feet. I mean, essentially it’s equivalent to walking up 75 stories. Is

2 (18m 2s):
It crowded? Like, do you have a lot of people on that?

4 (18m 4s):
You know, more people come down it then hike it up. So it is still the same trail, regardless of which way you’re going. So there was more crowds coming down than up, but a lot of people were going up. It was difficult and steep, but what made it a lot easier as clearly you’re inside, you’re in a cave and it’s 56 degrees. So it was cool. So you really didn’t feel that you were getting as tired as you were because you were staying in a comfortable temperature and that made it a lot easier.

2 (18m 32s):
The last time I was in a cave, it was super hot and it was with Kim and Cuba.

4 (18m 37s):
That was a party cave. This is a real cave here, but

3 (18m 40s):
That was a real cave to

1 (18m 42s):
It’s underground. So anything underground is going to be pretty cool. You know, it doesn’t have any natural sunlight hitting it. Right? Yeah. So we did see a few highlights. There was a place called devil spring and it was a large cave pool and it had a whole bunch of stalactites sticking out of it and a whole bunch of columns that were coming out of it. One thing that I learned was people want to put pennies in the pool and that can ruin the structures and the minerals that are in this natural area and discolor the water. So be mindful of that. Don’t do that. Don’t touch things, just be respectful of the nature and the environment it’s there for everyone to see and enjoy.

4 (19m 19s):
Yeah. And when Brittany said columns, we didn’t touch upon this. A column is when a stalagmites and stalactites actually meet and form as once. So there was lots of them in there as well. And another interesting formation that we saw was iceberg rock. And it’s a 200,000 ton rock that has fallen from the ceiling. And as you’re hiking up the Natural Entrance, there is a sign where can see them say, this is where the rock fell, but you could only see the very top portion of it. You can’t even see the bottom and that’s why they call it iceberg rock because like a natural iceberg, you could only see the very, very little bit of the top and not the big portion that’s below the water. So that was really, really cool to see.

4 (20m 0s):
I mean, I can’t imagine being in that cave when that 200,000 ton rock fell, could you imagine the echo or the vibration that would go on in there?

2 (20m 9s):
The thought that I had was how long ago was that that must have been a while back because Monday it has to be safe nowadays for you guys to be able to walk that area.

1 (20m 16s):
Yeah. It was like millions of years, I think back when that happened.

4 (20m 20s):
Yeah. I don’t know the specific timeframe, but definitely well before people were even in the cave and it was known,

2 (20m 26s):
Well, if no one was there to hear the fall, did it really fall? I’m just kidding. The joke about the tree. If a tree falls in the forest, did it really fall? Nevermind

3 (20m 36s):
A question about this. So the park has the caves. That’s what the park is known for. Are there caves in other parts of the nearby area or is this just really just the park?

4 (20m 45s):
It’s just really the park. I’m sure there’s other caves, but this one is just so big. So in the surrounding area, I’m sure they have them, but just in comparison, it’s not anything that’s as grand as this.

1 (20m 57s):
And like Jamal said, you can only see the tip of iceberg rock, but if you do the cave down and you walk down at UC the tip, and then as you continue to go down into the cavern, you can see more of the base and see how massive it is at the bottom. I also want to point out that while you’re in the cave, you can only bring in water. So you can’t bring any food, any other drinks, except for just water, make sure to bring a jacket because it is chilly down there. And if you are cave lovers and you’ve been to other caves, they are very strict about what clothing and gear you can wear into caves. And you have to answer when you buy your ticket. If you’ve been into another cave recently and where it is because there is something called white nose syndrome, and it’s a fungus that has wiped out millions of hibernating bats.

1 (21m 43s):
And so they don’t want you to bring gear from other cave systems in because it causes that fungus to grow and then they don’t want to wipe out their bat population.

4 (21m 51s):
Yeah. And that’s one thing too, beyond that, they do ask you if you’ve been in other caves. So you don’t bring any of that bacteria, that virus, et cetera, but as you’re hiking up or down the Natural Entrance, that’s when you start to really see the bats and you can start to smell the bat guano and see them around there. Well, that’s nature, Kim. I don’t know what else you want to say, but it’s really

3 (22m 13s):

4 (22m 14s):
No, they are not. So

3 (22m 15s):
They’re safe. They’re not going to bite you or attack you.

1 (22m 18s):
No, they just fly around. Some of them fly around. Some of them are just hanging out on the structures. So if you were in the cave in the big room, if you turned off all the lights, it would be pitch black. It’s very dimly lit. It’s beautiful down there. And then as you go up, it’s still dark. But as you start to make your way to the Natural Entrance, you get your first glimpse of sunlight. So it’s really cool to see. You can feel the weather change as well. You’ll start peeling off those layers, taking off that jacket because you’re going from the cool 56 degree cave into New Mexico summer temperature that we were in.

3 (22m 52s):
So from the time you went down to the cave to the time you came out, about how long were you down there? I would

4 (22m 58s):
Say about three hours. I would say

1 (22m 59s):

4 (23m 0s):
’cause, the hike up took a little bit of time, not as long, I would say maybe that took 45 minutes from the bottom up. You know, just a lot in for how many people were with us, with her family breaks, taking a little rests

1 (23m 11s):
And looking at

4 (23m 12s):
Everything. But yeah, you spend a lot of time looking like a mile and a quarter is not that much, but when you’re stopping to really look and take photos and just admire it, it takes a long time out of there. But we hiked our way out. And afterwards we left Carlsbad Caverns just for the day. And we ended up celebrating my birthday dinner at Chili’s nothing too exciting, but I do want to say this, the entire industry and town around Carlsbad Caverns National Park is because of Carlsbad, Caverns national park. Just how we talked about on our Bryce canyon episode, everything around there is centered around the industry of people coming to Bryce, same thing. So hotels are expensive there because there’s nowhere else to stay.

4 (23m 52s):
Or for what reason? Food wise. There’s no really good mom and pop shops. They’re all just really chained style restaurants. Like Chili’s subway, Sonic Buffalo, wild wings. So that’s what you can expect when you’re there. Okay. So we did that and speaking of expensive hotels, we were lucky to even find our Genki hotel for $120 a night.

1 (24m 13s):
Yeah. I mean, everyone’s going there. It was

3 (24m 16s):
Called the janky hotel.

4 (24m 17s):
It was not I’m describing it as janky. I don’t want to say what hotel it was, but it was janky.

3 (24m 22s):
If you’re interested, you can message us on Instagram at Travel Squad Podcast. And we’ll tell you what hotel they stayed in so that you don’t

2 (24m 28s):
Meet the same mistake.

1 (24m 30s):
Yeah. So you guys don’t make the same mistakes. So everyone’s going to the area anyways. So they don’t feel like they have to upkeep. And it’s literally in the middle of nowhere. So a lot of the hotels or Jenkins, we look in hotels and

3 (24m 42s):
Are there any good ones?

1 (24m 43s):
Yeah, they were. But they were in like the two 50 to three $50 range. So if

3 (24m 48s):
You’re splitting it with a group of four, it might

2 (24m 50s):

4 (24m 50s):
That’s true. If we were traveling with you ladies, and it was a squad trip, we probably would have done that, but we weren’t traveling with anybody. Yes. Brittany’s sister was there and niece, but her cousin was driving back to El Paso. Her sister didn’t want to share a room. So we just stayed where we stayed. But the best hotel that I saw from the outside seemed to be a holiday Inn express. And we looked at it and it was like 275 for a night.

2 (25m 17s):
They had free breakfast there.

4 (25m 19s):
They did have free breakfast that are, but you know what? I saved myself a little bit of money and just stayed at this hotel

3 (25m 25s):
Hotel have free breakfast.

1 (25m 26s):
It actually did have free breakfast. I mean, it wasn’t anything special. We did eat there one of the days. Well,

3 (25m 31s):
What kind of breakfast was it?

2 (25m 32s):
Did they have a waffle maker? No

4 (25m 34s):
One would take

3 (25m 36s):
Us through the spread.

4 (25m 37s):
It wasn’t very good. Like scrambled eggs. I think they were like powdered scrambled day. Maybe they had

3 (25m 43s):
Yeah. Better or worse than the Mexico city hotel where we couldn’t exactly tell what those eggs were

4 (25m 49s):

1 (25m 49s):
Equal. Ooh.

2 (25m 50s):
I would say

4 (25m 51s):
Equal or worse. Not better, but know that that breakfast was nothing to write home about. But the morning we woke up, which was Saturday, we had gone to Denny’s. So Brittany’s favorite place.

2 (26m 4s):
You guys Denny’s holds a special place in Jamal’s heart.

4 (26m 7s):
I used to work, But anyway, we went there with Brittany sister and our niece

1 (26m 13s):
Cause they were going to leave and continue on to Dallas, Texas, and Jamal and I were going to head to Guadalupe Mountains, National Parks.

4 (26m 21s):
Yeah. So Guadalupe Mountains, National park is in Texas. Now, as I mentioned earlier, Carlsbad Caverns is in the Southern portion of New Mexico and Guadalupe Mountains. National park is in Texas just right across that border. And it’s only a one hour drive from that Southern portion of New Mexico to get into Texas to Guadalupe Mountains because that’s right on the border there. So really close to each other.

3 (26m 45s):
What does Guadalupe Mountains? National Parks look like?

1 (26m 48s):
It looks like a whole bunch of mountains. And so it actually holds the highest peak in Texas in this part. And so that is one of the draws of the park.

3 (26m 57s):
A lot of trees,

1 (26m 57s):
Not a lot of trees because it’s, I mean, it’s desert. Oh. So I really actually wanted to hike Guadalupe peak, which is the highest peak in Texas, but it was an eight and a half mile hike to climb to the top of Texas is what they call it. But it’s eight

3 (27m 13s):
And a half miles up.

1 (27m 14s):
No round trip.

3 (27m 15s):

1 (27m 16s):
Okay. But it was too hot. Cause we went in the middle of July and there’s no shade along the trail. And also we were going to stick it out. But when we asked the ranger, he said that there had been a recent Cougar sighting.

3 (27m 27s):
Ooh, cougars

4 (27m 29s):
On the trail.

1 (27m 30s):
Xena, you look scared

3 (27m 31s):

4 (27m 33s):
Well, we passed as well because we went into the visitor center before the hike again, just to get a recommendation from the park ranger or one of the Rangers, because as Brittany said, she really wanted to do this particular hike I did too. But he said it was an excessively hot day. There’s not a lot of shade. There’s been serious Cougar sightings on the trails, Serious sightings, not just like, oh one person said it like multiple people have been coming back and it’s kind of been in the area.

3 (28m 2s):

4 (28m 3s):
It was easily like 98 degrees. And we got there maybe nine in the morning

3 (28m 10s):
When you want to be hiking.

4 (28m 11s):
No, not at all, not at all. So it was already really hot and clearly projected to get hotter for the day. So he said, there’s not really a lot of shade. If you had that backpack full of water, it could be enough, but he’s like, I really wouldn’t push it. So he gave us a, another recommendation to hike and we did devil’s hall instead, which is a really, really cool hike. But before we get into that, I’ve wanted to touch a little bit more about Guadalupe Mountains. Cause you asked the question, Kim, like, what can you expect? What does it look like? And like Brittany said, it is the highest peak in Texas, but it’s also famous and is a National Park because it is the world’s most extensive Permian, fossil reef and Waterloo bay mountains was at one time, millions of years ago covered with water.

4 (28m 53s):
And the Permian period was the last period of the Paleozoic area, which was about 541 million years ago. So a really, really long time to the Permian period was of that era of time. And so there were fossil forests that they have there. So you can see like ancient fossilized, coral and other things in that area. So it is really cool. Yeah.

1 (29m 15s):
And like I said, this park does have Texas’s highest peak, but it also holds in general, four of the highest peaks in Texas overall. And it just has a very diverse plant and animal life as well inside the park. But

3 (29m 27s):
Clearly they’ve got cougars.

1 (29m 28s):
Yeah, they got cougars. So like Jamal said, we ended up hiking devils hall instead, and this is a hike that I had done some research on. So it was kind of my backup hike anyways. And the ranger did recommend it. It was about 3.8 miles. So four miles round trip. And what was really cool about it is after the first mile, the trail enters like a Rocky wash. So what may have been like an old river bed perhaps, and it leads you to a really nice natural rock staircase. And that staircase is what leads to the hallway that is called devil’s hall. And it’s called that because it’s a hallway formed by really steep canyon walls.

1 (30m 9s):

3 (30m 10s):
It sounds pretty,

4 (30m 11s):
It was a really, really cool hike and certain areas of this hike were shaded, not necessarily by trees, but because you were in a slight little canyon or river wash, you did have protection from those walls to your side, but there was certain spots where you were exposed to the sun. But for the most part, if you had a hat on your sunscreen, definitely a good hike to do in such heat if you’re in that area at that time.

1 (30m 35s):
So this was the only hike we did in this National Park. And after we finished this hike, we drove back to Carlsbad, Caverns National Park. And the reason why we went back to Carlsbad Caverns National Park is like we said, the previous day we had hiked from the bottom out through the Natural Entrance. And this day we wanted to hike through the Natural Entrance, back into the cave and then take the elevator up.

3 (30m 58s):
Did you have to pay another 15 bucks?

4 (30m 60s):
No. Good question. I was just about to say that your entrance ticket to Carlsbad Caverns is good for three days. So that National Park entrance is per person because you’re going to a cave. It’s not like other ones where you pay per vehicle or something to that effect. It is per person. But I think since it is cost per person, they do allow you multiple days. And we had three days with it. So after our hike, we went back to Carlsbad, Caverns, like Brittany said, hiked in through the Natural Entrance. Didn’t really do too much sight scene. Cause we had already seen it, but just wanted to hike into it and take the elevator back out.

3 (31m 36s):
Very cool. That’s actually a good tidbit of information for our listeners. Most national parks that you go to, maybe all of them, maybe you guys know for sure, but most of them at least do, when you pay your entrance fee usually is by car. It’s good for three or seven days. Yeah.

1 (31m 50s):
Usually ranges whether it’s per person. So some of them are per person and I’ll give you like a few days or if it’s by car, it’s usually seven days.

3 (31m 59s):
So there you go.

4 (32m 0s):
Yeah. So we went back and then that night, Brittany and I were left all alone. Didn’t have any of her family left with us. And what did we do for dinner that night? Brittany

3 (32m 9s):
Wonder what you did.

1 (32m 10s):
Well, there wasn’t much to do in Carlsbad. And we

4 (32m 15s):
Already went to Chili’s. We stepped it up from

3 (32m 17s):
You already hit a Huck is on too.

1 (32m 21s):
So we went to, we got wild and we went to Buffalo, wild wings.

4 (32m 25s):
Well, we got real class and we stepped it up from Chili’s to Buffalo, wild,

3 (32m 29s):
Wild. Yeah.

4 (32m 31s):
So nothing too exciting that night at all.

1 (32m 34s):
But one thing I want to say is at night at Carlsbad Caverns, they do offer a bat show. Do you remember that?

4 (32m 42s):
Yeah, I don’t really remember what time it was specifically that usually is around dusk. So the time will change from month to month, depending on when it does get dark. And the purpose of the show is to see the bats fly out of the cave at dusk, to do their hunting for food clearly, usually for insects or whatever it is that they’re eating. So they have a little amphitheater area where you can go and see and watch all of the hundreds of thousands of bats fly out of the cave. We didn’t get to do that. Unfortunately. Do you remember why we didn’t do it?

1 (33m 14s):
I think we were so tired from all of the traveling we had done and it was another drive back to the park after dinner. So we just decided not to, but it is something I would do if I were back in the area.

4 (33m 25s):
Yeah. In hindsight, I really regret that. Now that Brittany saying that it is ringing a bell to me, I remember we were just tired from our hike earlier of being exposed to the sun. And we were waking up early on Sunday anyway, to do another hike at Carlsbad Caverns National Park. And when we did it the first day, we were originally talking about the big room that they have, but there is another area of Carlsbad Caverns National Park that isn’t readily available to the public. You actually have to get guided tours with Rangers and pay an additional cost for that tour. So the big room is the upper level, but they do have a Lower Cave below that. And Brittany and I were doing an early morning hike in the Lower Cave of Carlsbad Caverns.

1 (34m 8s):
Yeah. So I was the one that booked this for Jamal’s birthday weekend reservations are required because only 12 people are allowed with the guide at one time. So if you want to book this trail or a different trail at the offer because they offer several different ones and they range from different timeframes of the day, how many people can be on the trail and how strenuous it is. They are all on recreation.gov for this trail in particular, this is a Lower Cave trail. It was $20 per person on top of, you know, your entrance fee that we had already paid for. That was $15, but it was so worth it. You get two guides. They tell you information about the cave and what you’re going to be. Seeing that day. They give you your gear. So your helmets, your headlights, your gloves, and you have to wear really good shoes with grip because you are going to be repelling down, ropes, climbing down, clear ladders.

1 (34m 56s):
It is a very interactive hands-on hike.

3 (34m 59s):
Nice. What kind of shoes did you have on?

4 (35m 1s):
We had our normal hiking shoes, at least my hiking shoes that I have have really, really good grip on them. So I didn’t use anything in particular special, just my normal hiking shoes.

1 (35m 10s):
I did the same, but they have said in the past, like people have tried to go in with like open toed shoes or sandals. And like, that’s definitely not allowed. You want to get hurt. They don’t actually

2 (35m 20s):
Let you do it though. No, I mean, if you’re going on,

4 (35m 22s):
They would tell you no, you can’t do it. Absolutely. They’re not going to let you in with that. It’s a safety hazard. So like Brittany said, they give you all the gear that you need, your helmet, gloves, headlights. And the reason why you need the helmet with a headlamp is because in the big room on top, it is lit up because everybody’s in there. But in the Lower Cave, they don’t have any lights set up whatsoever. So it is completely pitch black. The only light you have is the light that’s being emitted from your helmet. So that in of itself was surreal to just go down and see the cave and be there and pitch black

2 (35m 59s):
Serious question. Did it have any bathrooms down there? No

4 (36m 2s):
Bathrooms down there. Very good point. We’re about to mention that. No bathrooms, you can’t take an

3 (36m 7s):
NSO T issue.

4 (36m 8s):
There is no NSF issue. And like we said, no bathrooms, and you can’t take a backpack down there. You could only take really like a Fanny pack or something small to hold your water bottle. But that’s really about it.

1 (36m 22s):
Yeah. Because like we said, you’re rappelling down ropes and you’re going down ladder. So you have to have your hands free. So they don’t let you bring in extra stuff because one, they don’t want you to spill it, ruin it, whatever. And they don’t want you to get her. If your hands aren’t free while you’re traversing the terrain,

2 (36m 37s):
Serious question for you. What did you guys do for your phone? Cause if you put it in your pocket and you’re traversing and it might fall out, so how did you carry that?

4 (36m 45s):
I just had mine in my pocket, but I had my hiking pants and my hiking pants have like a zip cargo pockets. So it was stuck in there for me. I don’t know what Brittany did with hers.

1 (36m 55s):
It was cold in the cave, you know, it’s 56 degrees down there. So I was wearing a windbreaker jacket and my windbreaker jacket has a pocket that is zippered. So I zippered it into that.

2 (37m 6s):
Yeah. I don’t think I would take my phone unless I had something to zipper it into. Yeah.

1 (37m 10s):
Yeah. And so this tour was a three hour guided tour. So you start up in the visitor center, they take you through the briefing. They give you all of your equipment and then you take the elevator down into the cave. They tell you use the bathroom. It’s going to be a three hour tour. There’s no bathrooms on the trail. And to get to the Lower Cave, it’s from the big room. So off to the side where we had hiked the previous day and we didn’t even notice it. There is a rope that is just along the wall and they lower the rope down into this canyon and they say, okay, this is how you traverse down into the Lower Cave. And they show you how to go down it backwards essentially.

4 (37m 49s):
Yeah. We had to repel down the rope. And then once we got to that level, then there was a series of ladders that we had to climb that were super narrow

3 (37m 58s):
Repelling part. How far down was

4 (38m 0s):
It? I would say maybe 25 feet of repelling.

1 (38m 3s):

4 (38m 3s):
Would say quite a bit of repelling. And they made us do all these safety features. Like you would have to say off rope, you know, when you were done. So nobody else pulled it while you were on it or something to that effect. Was it lit up in the Lower Cave

3 (38m 16s):
As you were repelling down?

4 (38m 17s):
Yes, it was. Cause it’s coming from the upper cave, big room that we were talking about. So once you repel down into that area and we get to the ladders, then it’s not lit anymore. All the light is coming from your head headlamp.

1 (38m 28s):
Ooh. And this is why there’s a maximum amount of 12 people per tour because you can’t be on the rope at the same time as someone else, you can’t be on the ladder as the same time as someone else. So you have to say like on ladder off ladder on rope off rope. And so it’s a series of 12 people plus the guides doing this. So that does take a bit of time just to get down into the Lower Cave and out of the Lower Cave.

2 (38m 50s):
Were there any children in your guys’s

1 (38m 52s):
Group? No. And there’s actually like an age limit. I’m not sure what it is, but there is an age limit and on this hike, you have to be able to like crawl through some spaces. So if you’re not comfortable or can’t do that, then you’re not able to do the hike.

4 (39m 4s):
Yeah. But it was really cool down there. Cause like I said, it’s just such an amazing contrast in the big room at the upper level. Again, everything is lit up so you can see and there no issues whatsoever, but once you get down there, it’s completely pitch black. And again, all the lights coming from your headlight. And so you just get a really distinctive tour and see a portion of the cave that most people who go don’t get to see. And that was really unique. And one part in particular that really sticks out is we had to crawl through a little opening and it took us to this small room. And what do they have us do when we were in there, Brittany,

1 (39m 42s):
I had us turn off our headlamps and sit in pitch black darkness

3 (39m 46s):
For a while or just experience it real quick.

4 (39m 50s):
Well, it was told to us to just experience, but he had us keep it off for a while and was talking to us with the lights off. And he was telling us history and other information about the caves. No, no ghost stories. But he was just saying like, imagine the early days of exploring down here, like if you lost your light, we’re in the middle, literally of nowhere. How are you going to find your way out? It’s like, this is a death sentence. So it was almost like a humbling experience to see this cave in hitch black. And it’s crazy. Like literally no light can come from anywhere and you’re done. Like I can’t imagine exploring something back in that day and having your light go out,

1 (40m 29s):
Like Jamal said, we were in the liver cave and we crawled into a even smaller cave and then turned off her headlamps. So it was just like, we were all sitting there, like cross-legged in this tiny space that we all crawled through. And then just all of a sudden the lights go out and it’s a pitch black.

2 (40m 45s):
This makes me so sad. Thinking about like people who might’ve died down.

4 (40m 48s):
Yeah. I mean, he didn’t say people have paid that. Yeah. I’m sure any cave that’s been explored has had somebody who’s lost their life in it. But even though it wasn’t a safe setting, that was a truly humbling experience because when he’s talking to you and you’re really thinking about it, like I was thinking like, shit, what if I was really exploring down here or for whatever reason, all of our headlamps got cracked and here we are just like stuck in this pitch, black, like how are we getting out of here? So intense, really humbling feeling.

1 (41m 17s):
One other highlight of this tour is they took us to an area called the rookery and along it you’re walking on this pathway and on either side of you is water and these tiny little things that are called Ks pearls, but it just looks like so beautiful that there’s all of these beautiful circular white sheep pearls in this water. It was so cool to see.

4 (41m 38s):
So after spending three hours in the Lower Cave, we made our way back up and that concluded our experience and time at Carlsbad Caverns National Park. And I just want to say again, I’ve been in caves before, but every time I go in, I think I know what I’m going to see what to expect. Cause I’ve seen it before. But each time it’s just such an amazing experience because nature’s amazing. So beautiful in there.

1 (42m 3s):
It’s like, no matter what National Park you go to, you just feel so small in comparison to all of these structures. And when you say we drove back up, you do mean we drove back up to Albuquerque New Mexico.

3 (42m 14s):
Did you guys do anything in Albuquerque? Is there anything to do that?

4 (42m 17s):
We did a couple of things in Albuquerque. Interestingly enough, right before we had gone on this trip, I came across a buzz feed thread that listed the best tacos in every state. And I was like, oh, okay. And then I saw that the best tacos and New Mexico happened to be in Albuquerque. So I told Brittany that night, Sunday or last night before we fly back home Monday morning, let’s go there. So we ended up going to El Paisa, Taqueria. And again, according to the buzz free thread listed as having the best tacos and New Mexico. And it was really, really good. Do I think it’s the best tacos? No, I’ve had better here in San Diego. I know, I guess. Well, those are the only tacos I’ve ever had in New Mexico.

4 (42m 57s):
So I don’t really know otherwise if their worst not Chili’s doesn’t count. Chili’s definitely doesn’t count. So we did that and Brittany and I are both breaking bad fans and that takes place in Albuquerque. So what did we do, Brittany?

1 (43m 8s):
You know, we love to drive by famous houses. So we drove by the breaking bad house.

3 (43m 13s):
How was it thrilling?

1 (43m 15s):
No, because, and I had read this in advance that when you drive by, you do not want to park directly in front of the house because the lady that owns the house is sitting on the lawn in the chair, yelling at people like don’t don’t park here, don’t stop and look. And like she’s really mean. And so you should look at it from a far

4 (43m 34s):
And she’s really fenced off the whole house area just as well too. So the house itself still looks the same as it did in the show because they leased out that house from the owners of it and they haven’t done any remodeling to the outside or anything. Again, it looks exactly the same, but they do have a big fence because apparently a lot of people would trespass on it. And there’s a very famous scene where the main character, Walter White, he throws a pizza on the roof. And supposedly a lot of people who were breaking bad fan tourists would go and throw a pizza like on the roof. So they got tired of it and they block it off. But that same thread that Brittany reds saying that the woman owner of the house definitely doesn’t like the tourism that it’s brought.

4 (44m 15s):
So she’s out watching. If the husband’s out, I’ve heard he’s a little bit more friendlier. Don’t know, didn’t see him, can’t say, but we just parked on that street, looked at it for a little bit and said, do you remember this scene where he came driving with the car barely through the neighborhood, like on this street right here is like, this is it like watched the show is really cool in that respect.

1 (44m 34s):
Yeah. Actually you mentioned that there’s actually more than one way to enter the street. And so I pulled up a map and I said to Jamaal, we’ve always watched them enter the street from a specific angle. So why don’t we enter from the same angle? So we kind of get that breaking bad view. Like we were there.

5 (44m 50s):

4 (44m 52s):
It was actually really fun. I bet. I mean, I love TV. One of my favorite shows love breaking bad. So it was cool. Other stuff to do in Albuquerque. New Mexico don’t really know. Again, we were so tired. We just checked into our hotel. They didn’t have a breakfast buffet, but they did have in the lobby areas for us to pick up like fruit, granola bars, things like that. So we grabbed a few things for the morning of, because we had an early morning, Monday flight, so we can go back to work per norm.

3 (45m 19s):
Do you recall the name of the hotel you stayed in Albuquerque and was it close to the airport?

4 (45m 23s):
Yeah, so it was close to the airport and it was an extended stay America.

3 (45m 28s):
So it had a kitchen.

4 (45m 29s):
It did have a kitchen, but we weren’t there long enough to buy supplies to you.

3 (45m 32s):
Cause the kitchen.

1 (45m 33s):
No, we did make oatmeal. Don’t you remember that? We made oatmeal in the morning. They had little oatmeal packets and we made that in the morning before we left.

4 (45m 40s):
Yeah, but we just microwave it though. I didn’t cook it on the stove. I don’t think so. I didn’t use the kitchen. I used a microwave, I guess. So that’s maybe why I’m

3 (45m 48s):

4 (45m 49s):
Yeah, but all in all fun birthday weekend trip nature. I just can’t say this enough nature gets me going just like ancient ruins and buildings. Get you feel Nature gets me going,

3 (46m 1s):
Gets me going to

1 (46m 2s):
Jamal. And I went, you know, he was giving me shit about like, why don’t you just let me have a birthday to do nothing? Why are we always liking on my birthday? Once we did Carlsbad Caverns after the day ended, he looked at me and said, you know, this is a really cool birthday trip. I’m really glad we came.

3 (46m 18s):
Doesn’t he say that every year? Yeah.

4 (46m 20s):
I told you. I know I do is just, you know, sometimes I’m stubborn and just one,

2 (46m 27s):
You know what, Jamal, when I saw your guys’ pictures on Facebook, especially with the headlight on your head, I was so jealous.

3 (46m 34s):
Well the pictures look amazing places, so cool looking.

1 (46m 38s):
Yeah. And that’s part of the time that it takes for you to explore the areas as you’re trying to get the best pictures. But because it’s in that really dim lighting, some parts is dark. It’s hard to get a really good picture with your phone because there’s not a lot of light.

2 (46m 51s):
And if you want tips about getting the perfect shot, check out episode five in Sequoia and Kings canyon, where Jamal and Kim give their best tips.

3 (46m 60s):
We’ll have a whole episode on travel photography coming up. Yes.

1 (47m 3s):
So Kim you’ve been so patient, it is finally

4 (47m 10s):
Questions of the week. My voice isn’t as good as yours. That’s actually really embarrassing. I’m going to wish. I didn’t say that

3 (47m 23s):
Of the week.

4 (47m 26s):
All right. What have we got this weekend?

3 (47m 27s):
I love it. All right. From Boulder, hate Jen. She asked how many national parks have you guys been to?

4 (47m 34s):
Oh wow. As you can tell, we have been to a lot. I myself have been to 25 total Brittany and I together 23. So I don’t know which number to count because I like to count the parks that Brittany and I have been to together. But I’ve been to Yosemite and Yellowstone without Brittany. So total 25, but truly 23 together.

1 (47m 57s):
I have been to 24 national parks. So the one that I have not been to with Jamal is Yosemite. He has been to it himself, but we went separately. So we did not go together. Like you said together, we’ve been to 23,

2 (48m 9s):
Jen. I have no idea. So because of this question, I counted it out with Jamal and Brittany and it was 14.

3 (48m 17s):
I know that I’ve been to 13 national parks because I recently just got a gift from my grandma, which is a big map of the United States. And you can scratch off every National Park as you do it. So I counted. I’ve been to 13.

1 (48m 31s):
Shout out Linda. Thanks for that guest. Shout

3 (48m 33s):
Out grandma. And then we have one more question.

2 (48m 35s):
All right. This one is coming from Dasia in Lamesa. So I love it. Daysha is also your guys’s niece’s name, name? Twins. So Dasia asks, how do you pick what National Park you are going to next?

1 (48m 51s):
Ooh, I know the answer to this.

3 (48m 53s):
Now I’m going to be using my map because I can really see how close they are. Like we gotta go to Alaska. There’s so many there. Yeah. There’s no way. There’s two.

1 (49m 0s):

4 (49m 2s):
Alaska has the most national parks that have any state, but over the 48, contiguous, California has the most and then Utah. So those two are the clusters of more reasonable, but yes, Alaska would be amazing, but it’s so big so far apart.

1 (49m 16s):
So I am such a fan of national parks. I actually decided to make a PowerPoint I’m so nerdy, what? PowerPoint of every single National Park, the best time of year to go to the National Park, how much the entrance fees costs and what I would like to do if I were to visit that

3 (49m 35s):
Power point,

4 (49m 36s):
Here’s the airport on where to go to

3 (49m 38s):

4 (49m 39s):
You seem so surprised, Kim. I feel like she’s told you this before.

3 (49m 42s):
I mean a PowerPoint deck doesn’t seem like the best.

4 (49m 46s):
I was shocked when she did it on a PowerPoint as well, but

3 (49m 49s):
I would think Excel would be a good place for that.

1 (49m 52s):
I would have to show you how it’s set up, but I made this PowerPoint. It talks about the closest airports to get to these national parks as well. And it also gives little tips. Like if you were to go to this national park, these national parks are also in the area, so you can make it a weekend trip a week trip. If there’s a lot nearby Vienna, you look flabbergasted.

2 (50m 14s):
I just didn’t know this.

3 (50m 16s):
If you would like a copy of Brittany’s infamous National Park PowerPoint, we are going to be giving the first three people to leave us a written review on apple podcasts and email us a screenshot of it. Travel Squad Podcast at gmail.com. The first three people that give us that review and send us that email. We will send you a copy of the PowerPoint. So you can plan all your National Park trips

4 (50m 36s):
Yourself, not just in your view. Five star review.

3 (50m 38s):
Yeah, one star. No, thank you

1 (50m 41s):
So long with my PowerPoint. I look at the Southwest sales or airline sales to see where are the cheapest destinations to go to? I see the cities and I think, okay, is there a close National Park to this area? And that’s essentially how I picked my next trip.

4 (50m 56s):
It’s like when we did Chicago, we did Chicago because we want to go to Chicago and Indiana dunes. National park is close by. It’s like when we go to Vegas and Zion is a quick drive away, you know? So a lot of times it’s dictated, like Brittany said on what is close to us in the area and what’s feasible. We haven’t really hit a lot of east coast national parks because it’s a lot harder to do those in a weekend. Those invest, you know, taking time off of work, maybe utilizing it as a vacation. So a lot of the west coast parks usually, but now we’re running out of those. So we’re going to have to figure out a new strategy for those east coast.

3 (51m 31s):
Well luck though, because a lot of them are on the Western side of the United.

1 (51m 35s):
Yes, we are in luck and we have a upcoming trip to two national parks. And you want to tell,

3 (51m 42s):
I don’t know if we’ve told anybody this yet.

2 (51m 44s):
You guys, we are going to Yellowstone national park and then we’re going to go to Disneyland. I’m just kidding. Yeah. Yellowstone national park is one

3 (51m 56s):
Grand Teton. National park is the other they’re right by each other. So we’re doing a nice, is it seven days? Six

1 (52m 1s):
Days. Thanks. Six day,

3 (52m 3s):
Six day exploration of bison and hiking and

4 (52m 7s):
Bears and cougars Zana.

2 (52m 9s):
It was just about to say I was waiting for Kim to finish her sentiment. So I could say no cougars allowed. And I had no idea that we’re going to grand Tetons. Yes. I’m a part of the trip, but that’s why I didn’t answer the second one because I only knew the first

3 (52m 20s):
Wyoming and Montana.

1 (52m 21s):
Yep. Crossing off some more states on our state bucket list.

3 (52m 25s):
Hey guys, we’re almost done with the episode. Any final thoughts before we say goodbye?

1 (52m 29s):
Actually, yes. I had one that just came to me. What’s up? So in the visitor center of Carlsbad, Caverns National Park, they have a replica of what the cave looks like. And you can really see a miniature model of the area and what you’re hiking into. And so it displays the Lower Cave, the big room, the Natural Entrance, and even other parts of the cave that you can’t get to.

3 (52m 50s):
Oh, that’s cool. So it’d probably be cool to check it out before you start hiking. So you can kind of know what you’re in.

4 (52m 56s):
It’s like a scale model that they have, and it shows the paths and cool have the upper to the lower. And it’s really, really interesting to see. Definitely cool to check out when you’re in the visitor center.

3 (53m 6s):
Very nice. All right. Well, that’s all we got for you. Thank you guys so much for tuning into this week’s episode. Keep the adventure going with us by following us on Instagram at Travel Squad Podcast and tag us in all of your adventures and send us those questions, this,

2 (53m 19s):
And if you found the information in this episode to be useful, or you thought we were just playing funny, please share it with a friend that would enjoy it.

4 (53m 27s):
Please subscribe, rate, and review our podcasts and tune in every Travel Tuesday for new episodes.

1 (53m 32s):
Stay tuned for next week’s episode, we are going to be doing something a little different. We’re going to be sharing with you how travel changed our lives.

4 (53m 39s):

6 (53m 41s):
Yeah. Thanks. Bye everyone.

4 (53m 43s):

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