- 30 miles (48 km)
- 90 minutes to drive or a day to enjoy the byway.
The Guadalupe Back Country Byway follows NM-137 for 30 miles through the Chihuahuan Desert, the Guadalupe Escarpment, and Lincoln National Forest. A varied landscape thrives here; from limestone outcroppings to thick pine forest stands to underground caves.
Recreation abounds within these public lands. Go hiking, backpacking, mountain biking or horseback riding along one of many trails. Interact with animals either by watching wildlife or by hunting. Some of the animals that make their homes here include deer, pronghorn antelope, foxes, and a wide range of birds. If you're feeling extra adventurous, go caving and explore the Carlsbad Caverns that lie beneath the surface.
Points of Interest
Points of Interest Along The Way
Established to preserve Carlsbad Cavern and numerous other caveswithin a Permian-age fossil reef, the park contains over 94 knowncaves, including Lechuguilla Cave—the nation's deepestlimestone cave at 1,567 feet (478m) and third longest.
Carlsbad Cavern, with one of the world's largest undergroundchambers and countless formations, is highly accessible, with avariety of tours offered year-round. The cavern's immense Big Roomboasts 14 acres of floor space and a 200 foot ceiling over 800 feetbelow the surface.
You'll marvel at nature's wonders including the Hall of Giants,Temple of the Sun, Crystal Spring Dome, Painted Grotto and theGrape Arbor. Enjoy this fairytale world of growing formations wherethe temperature is always 56° Tours are self-guided andcontinuous.
South of Carlsbad, New Mexico on State Road 62/180 to County Road 7 at White's City. Follow CR-7 into the Carlsbad Caverns National Park.
Lincoln National Forest (NM)
This Forest is known as the birthplace of the world-famous Smokey Bear, the living symbol of the campaign to prevent forest fires. The original bear is buried in Capitan, New Mexico.