Management of Subterranean Ecosystems in Extreme Environments
Lehman Cave photo by Dave Bunnell
NCKMS 2025 Team
Hosted by the Western Cave Conservancy

Volunteers play a crucial role in the success of NCKMS operations. The transformation of a symposium from vision to reality requires months of dedication, passion, and commitment to our mission. The team's task is to create a solid platform for our participants to network with other industry professionals while gaining modern insights into cave and karst management.

Our 2025 production team will grow in the next several months and multiple roles still need to be filled. If you think you might be interested in joining the 2025 NCKMS team, please check out our volunteer page. The Western Cave Conservancy welcomes your participation!

NCKMS 2025 Team

Matt Bowers


Pat Kambesis


Mike Spiess

Financial Auditor

Kirsten Bahr

Project Director

Highway 50, Nevada

In July of 1986, Life magazine labeled Ely, Nevada's Highway 50 as "The Loneliest Road in America" and suggested drivers should have 'survival skills' for the trip. The name was intended as a pejorative, but Nevada officials seized it as a marketing slogan. The name originates from large desolate areas traversed by the route, with few or no signs of civilization. The highway crosses several large desert valleys separated by numerous mountain ranges towering over the valley floors, in what is known as the Basin and Range province of the Great Basin. Photo by Matt Bowers, Third Media.

Invasive Plant Species


One of the major ecological threats to the sagebrush-dominated Great Basin ecosystem is the introduction and spread of dozens of species of non-native plants. The most important of these, cheatgrass (or downy brome) covers the largest area: 25 million acres, one-third of the area of the Great Basin.



Partly Cloudy Partly cloudy, with a low around 32. South wind 20 to 25 mph, with gusts as high as 40 mph.


Isolated Showers And Thunderstorms then Isolated T-storms Isolated showers and thunderstorms between 11am and 5pm, then isolated thunderstorms and scattered rain and snow showers. Partly sunny, with a high near 55. South wind 10 to 20 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%.

Sunday Night

Isolated T-storms Isolated thunderstorms and scattered rain and snow showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 29. West northwest wind 5 to 10 mph. Chance of precipitation is 40%. New snow accumulation of less than one inch possible.


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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