Overview: Found within Great Basin National Park, Lehman Caves is an excellent example of a limestone solution cavern. Its beginning can be traced back 550 to 600 million years ago when a warm shallow sea covered most of what is now Nevada and Utah. Over the next 400 million years, sea creatures lived and died, piling layers of calcium carbonate-rich sediment on the ocean floor. These sediments gradually solidified into limestone rock. Millions of years ago, these limestone layers were uplifted, exposing them to the elements. For millennia, rain and melting snow soaked through the soil and combined with carbon dioxide gas from decaying plans and animals to form a weak solution of carbonic acid. This acidic solution trickled downward through tiny cracks until it reached the water table. The limestone around these water-filled cracks slowly dissolved. These cracks grew into the rooms and passageways that make up Lehman Caves. Over time, the water table dropped, and the water drained out of these underground chambers. Seeping water continued to enter the air-filled chambers of the cave. Every water droplet carried with it a small amount of dissolved limestone. When exposed to the air of the open chamber, the carbon dioxide gas escaped from the solution. Calcite and other minerals formed deposits along the walls, ceilings and floors. These deposits created the beautiful and mysterious formations we know as speleothems. Today, these same processes of growth continue, slowly decorating the passages and rooms of the cave, adding to the fantastic examples of stalactites, columns, draperies, flowstone, helicities, and rare shield formations.
Visitors are responsible for their own safety throughout the cave. The trail may be wet and slippery -wear shoes with good tread. Tours are Ranger-led. Visitors are required to stay with the ranger and on the trail at all times. Touching or collecting cave formations is strictly prohibited. Out of consideration for other visitors, those who create a disturbance for the group will be escorted out of the cave. Low Ceilings - No crawling is required. However, low ceilings throughout the cave require frequent ducking and the trail has several narrow passages. Temperatures - The cave is about 50 degrees F or 10 degrees C. Bring a light jacket, sweatshirt, or sweater for comfort. Darkness - The tour may include a period where the ranger turns off the lights to demonstrate total darkness. Pack lightly - Visitors may only bring a camera, jacket, flashlight, keys (in pocket), pocket wallet, and pocket cell phone into the cave. Not permitted are backpacks, fanny packs, purses, camera case, food, drink (including water), gum, candy, tobacco products, strollers, baby backpacks, hiking sticks, tripods, selfie sticks, or pets. Talk with a ranger for exceptions for medical reasons. Firearms - Firearms are not permitted in the visitor center or cave since both are considered federal facilities.
If you have not checked in with the front desk to claim your reserved tickets by the scheduled start time of your tour, your tickets will be considered forfeit and will be resold on a first-come, first-served basis to visitors on site. Unclaimed tickets will not be refunded, whether they have been resold or not.
Help protect the bats. To help prevent the spread of White Nose Syndrome, a disease that is killing millions of bats in North America, you may not bring any footwear, clothing or gear (including cameras) into the Lehman Caves that has ever been in any other cave or mine at any time unless you decontaminate it at the park.
During the summer (March - October) children under 5 are only allowed on the Lodge Room tour, which is ideal for families with young children. Children under 5 years of age may not join the Grand Palace tour except during the winter.
Groups with members who are wheelchair users or have trouble walking should reserve the First Room Tour. NOTE: Rangers cannot push wheelchairs.
Visitors who are eligible for pass discounts must present their Senior Annual, Senior Lifetime or Access pass upon arrival at the park when picking up tickets. Only the pass holder is eligible for the discount.
No refunds once tour starts. See Facility Rates for fees.
100 Baker NV 89311