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The caves of Lehman (Lehman Caves) in Great Basin national park

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One of the main attractions of Great Basin National Park (United States of America) are the Lehman Caves or caves of Lehman. A limestone rock caves that were created millions of years ago when Nevada was completely covered by a huge sea of ​​shallow and very warm waters.


Trekking in Great Basin and the Wheeler Peak (Nevada, USA)

Lehman Caves (Lehman Caves) in Great Basin national park

Around 1883,Absolom Lehman He found a natural entrance to limestone rock caves in the Great Basin desert. It was not the result of chance because the information obtained was from the Indians who already knew their existence. 2 years later, in 1885 the cave was opened to the public for the first time, being Absolom Lehman himself who guided.


Lehman Caves (Lehman Caves) in Great Basin national park

The natural entrance today is not used and a new one much more ensures it opened many years later and where you can visit walking without any problems. However, their access is restricted by schedule and for a certain number of visitors, therefore it is convenient to book in advance.

Visit the caves of Lehman

We have visited Lehman caves at the end of our trekking through Great Basin. Taking advantage of the fact that the caves were right there and that they are widely promoted by the park, we decided to book to see the route of theGrand Palace Tour. A 90-minute route, the longest that could be done. There is an option B, calledLodge Room Tour, 60 minutes long. They also have a maximum limit of 20 people and depending on the dates there may be between 4 or 9 daily routes.


Lehman Caves (Lehman Caves) in Great Basin national park - Entrance

The visit begins in the same interpretation center of the caves, where a guide will give us an explanation of 15 minutes and where it will give us the opportunity to introduce ourselves to the rest of the group. All always in English.


Lehman Caves (Lehman Caves) in Great Basin National Park - Natural Entrance

Later we will enter the cave where we will pass through a long corridor until we find a hole in the ceiling that marks the point of the natural entrance. Later there is a room of considerable size where the group will stop and all the lights in the cave will go out. Moment in which the guide asks for silence to observe the tranquility of the darkness.


Lehman Caves (Lehman Caves) in Great Basin national park

Taking advantage of the darkness he began telling curious stories of the cave, such as the filming of a B-series movie calledThe Wizard of Mars, or the wizards of Mars, where they made the cave pass like a stage from another planet. The worst thing is that at that time the preservation of the cave was not a requirement and the producers of the tape were allowed to flood the cave to shoot several scenes, which caused irreparable damage to Lehman caves.


Lehman Caves (Lehman Caves) in Great Basin national park

An important detail during the visit is not creating high expectations and not making comparisons. That was a serious mistake that we made since if we compare these caves with others that we can visit in Spain such as Valporquero's lacueva in León or Águila's Lasagvas, these are far better.


Lehman Caves (Lehman Caves) in Great Basin national park

In Lehman caves we will find the classic stalactites and stalagmites, many of them in a rather disastrous state and others in better condition. Unfortunately there is a lack of moisture in the cave and in many rooms the formations are very dry.


Lehman Caves (Lehman Caves) in Great Basin national park

Note that the guided tour is very enjoyable and the explanations are quite entertaining. As it is usually a classic in this type of visits, the name of the formations that fall from the ceiling and those that leave the ground are asked, as well as how much they cost to leave and how sensitive they are to sudden temperature changes and lack of humidity .


Lehman Caves (Lehman Caves) in Great Basin national park

In short, the star of Great Basin is its landscapes and the gigantic Wheeler peak. Caves from my point of view are only a secondary option that we would have to consider if we were to spend several days in the area.

Practical data

Before leaving for the United States

  • United States Planet's Guide
  • Airport Transfers
  • Car rental in USA with a 15% discount
  • The best excursions in the United States

When to visit Great Basin National Park?

The ascent to the Wheeler Peak from the normal route can only be made from June to the end of October if weather conditions permit. The rest of the year the road is covered by snow.

The caves of Lehman are open all year and its road is maintained all year.

How much does access to Great Basin National Park cost?

Unlike most national parks in the United States, Great Basin National Park is free.

How much does access to the caves of Lehman cost?

9$ for the 60 minute tour and 11$ for the 90 minute one. It is advisable to book in advance.

Where to sleep in Great Basin?

Ideally, sleep in one of the campgrounds inside the park. It is not necessary to reserve since the places are for the first one to arrive. Outside the park the accommodations are very limited and a good option is the following:

  • Stargazer Inn Nevada: our choice in Baker. Large rooms and a frankly good restaurant.

Additional Information

Thanks

To Joaquin and Michel for joining me on this trip.

Travel insurance

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