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     While everyone knows that the best and biggest of New Mexico‚Äôs caves are at least 180 miles away and in the Guadalupes about 300 miles from here, we still have many caves near our convention locale to keep cavers of all sizes, shapes and skills (including cave divers) happy. The closest limestone caves are in the Sandia Mountains. One of our most sporting, nearby caves is in a soft marble or alabaster. We have small lava tubes in the Petroglyph National Monument and classic lava tubes in the El Malpais (badlands) about 80 miles west. Some caves are horizontal with tight crawls, some have climbs easily managed by handline or no rope needed, and some are vertical, requiring rope skills. Believe it or not, New Mexico also has a few alpine caves nearby and there will likely be a pre-convention weekend trip announced soon.