So it was that we found ourselves among the 250 visitors gathered on blankets and camp chairs in front of the Lehman Caves
Visitor Center on the evening of the Perseids' peak.
This Nevada park gets 3 percent of the visitors Yosemite does--more room for you to take in ancient bristlecone pines, Lehman Caves
, and starry night skies.
On the nature front, the Great Basin National Park is nearby, with its spectacular Lehman Caves
After a section on ecology and natural and human histories of the region, she focuses first on features within the Park, among them Lehman Caves
, Wheeler Peak Scenic Drive, and the gateway town of Baker.
Created around Lehman Caves
National Monument in 1986, Great Basin is one of the newest national parks, and its isolation invokes a feeling of having stepped back into yesteryear.
Among the most popular spots: Lehman Caves
, Minnetonka Cave and, of course Timpanogos Cave east of American Fork--a longtime favorite, but be physically prepared for the initial ascent to its entrance.
The Lehman Caves
in the park are amazing, but they had been abused since the time of their discovery.
took an estimated 600 million years to become what they are today, each extraordinary hollow containing variations of stalactites, stalagmites, bacon strips, cave coral, shields, flowstone, and gravity-abusers called helictites.
But in Lehman Caves
, visitors can see calcite stalactites, stalagmites, and hundreds of rare formations that look like dripping shields.
At Lehman Caves
, sign up early for one of the guided tours through an otherworldly half mile of stalactites, stalagmites, and twisting, straw-shaped helictites.
Every year, dozens of them gather at sites including Mammoth Cave National Park in Kentucky, Carlsbad Caverns National Park in New Mexico, and Lehman Caves
at Nevada's Great Basin National Park.
. Parachute-like shields with veils of flowstone, and a dripping room where stalactites hang like Spanish moss are among the attractions in this limestone cave, in Great Basin National Park.