Open Season for 2024 Caving Season Project Proposals

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Roswell Field Office is now accepting project work and scientific proposals for the 2024 caving season for caves within the Roswell Field Office boundaries. To streamline the proposal review process and bring some uniformity to proposal content you MUST fill out the Special Recreation Permit Application (form 2930-1) and the Operations Plan/ Proposal template. If you have submitted a proposal in the past and are resubmitting it, you must now use the new pdf documents. If you submitted last year using the new pdf documents, you should update the document and resubmit it. Read and use the 2024 Proposal Submission Criteria Document as a guide to fill out the documents. All proposals must be received by January 8, 2024.

To request a proposal submission package, please email the Roswell Field Office Cave Specialist: Knutt Peterson -

Additional Information

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s long-range forecast for December, January, and February calls for average temperatures and above average precipitation. The forecast for February, March, and April is for cooler than normal and average precipitation conditions. If a mild winter does occur, then there is a good chance that caving will resume on Snowy River in May. The BLM will assess the situation as it progresses. Snowy River trips should be planned for May, June, and July after that there is a good chance that the seasonal monsoon rains could cause Snowy River to flow again.

In mid-April 2024, a BLM reconnaissance/assessment trip will occur to determine the condition of the Cave, the status of bat hibernation, and to recover data logger data from Snowy River, which will determine which trips will enter the Cave in 2024.

The Roswell Field Office would like to see a variety of proposals for 2024. If Snowy River becomes flooded again, the focus of work will be in the historic part of the Cave. In the Historic part of the Cave, priority will be given to proposals that offer to cleanup old survey and restoration. There will be a number of entries set aside for these types of trips.

Trips that were not able to occur during the 2015-2023 caving seasons, due to flooding or being backup trips, will need to submit their proposals again using the new .pdf forms during the open proposal period. This update should have the same title as the original proposal and contain a short statement about your desire to attempt the trip during the upcoming caving season and any updated information or trip details, including the new proposed trip dates and any changes in personnel. These trips will be the first group of trips to be reviewed in filling out the roster of Snowy River trips. The Snowy River trips that were approved for 2015- 2023 and were not executed have a high likelihood of going forward in 2024 and are considered pre-approved by the BLM New Mexico Cave Management Team. However, they will be reviewed to see if they still fulfill the BLM objectives for Fort Stanton Cave, or could be displaced by higher priority trips.

If you are writing a proposal to do science in the Cave, and you are not a subject matter expert, the BLM recommends that you have a subject matter expert work with you and co-author your proposal. If you anticipate needing to collect samples, please mention that you are also applying for a sample collection permit(s).

New proposals for historic portions of the Cave and Snowy River will be reviewed by the BLM Cave Specialist. If the proposal is recommended to move forward in the process, it will then be passed onto
the New Mexico Cave Management Team for their recommendations. The BLM Roswell Field Office Manager will be responsible for final approval on all proposals.

PLEASE READ THE ENTIRE PROPOSAL CRITERIA SHEET! Take note of the email address in which to send the proposal. Please be sure to include ALL required information in your proposal. Failure to do so means that your proposal will not be considered.

All proposals must be received by January 8, 2024.

To request a proposal submission package, please email the Roswell Field Office Cave Specialist: Knutt Peterson -