Management of Subterranean Ecosystems in Extreme Environments
National Cave & Karst Management Symposium
For professional resource managers
NCKMS participants
NCKMS Field Trips

Each NCKMS conference includes at least one regional field trip to local cave and karst features. In 2025, we plan to tour the Lehman Caves at Great Basin National Park and explore some surface hydrology features.

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Held every 2 years, the National Cave & Karst Management Symposium is designed to provide an opportunity for cave and karst management professionals to discuss and explore solutions to help protect and conserve caves, karst, cave ecosystems and underground water resources across North America.

Led by a consortium of governmental agencies, each NCKMS conference enourages participation from professionals of diverse backgrounds, working in various fields and with interests spanning a broad range of cave and karst management issues.

The first NCKMS was held in Albuquerque, New Mexico, in 1975, and symposia have been organized on a regular basis since then.

Each symposium publishes the papers presented during the event as a formal proceedings. These have become important references for those involved in cave and karst management. From 1999 onwards, the proceedings are available in various digital formats, and often also as hard copies.

The best resource for finding the proceedings of the NCKMS symposia is to access the Karst Information Portal.

Our Steering Committee

NCKMS Steering Committee

Our NCKMS Steering Committee was formed in 1990 to ensure that a NCKMS is held biennially. The committee selects a group to host each symposium from bids presented, and provides guidance for developing the event. It also offers scholarships to enable attendance to symposia. The committee comprises a representative from each of the organizations and agencies that have a formal interest in, or responsibility for, managing cave and karst resources on a nationwide basis. The committee offers a structure for these influential groups to share ideas and experiences, and to work together to address issues arising in managing caves and karst.

Great Basin National Park

Notch Peak at Sunset

Notch Peak

Notch Peak, located in West Millard County, Utah, and visible from Great Basin National Park, towers above the desert valleys at 9,725 ft. elevation. This 3,000 ft sheer cliff is one of the tallest limestone cliffs in America.


Advance registration for the 2025 symposium is expected to open in mid-2024. We will send an email to past attendees when that system comes online.

Feel free to join our mailing list if you would like to receive occasional updates on our plans.

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