An exploration into The Caves of New Mexico.

The site in and around the caves, once popularly known as Carlsbad Caverns, is now known simply as The Caves.  During the collapse the caverns were largely forgotten about, although they were still supplied with electricity, no one could afford vacations, especially not to somewhere as desolate and remote, and growing actively hostile as southern New Mexico.  This however was exactly the sort of location a group of resourceful survivalists and squatters (led by former park rangers and tourism staff who found themselves unemployed during the collapse) had been looking for.  The cave complex was vast, well explored and cool.   As time passed the Cavers grew more and more settled in, and their numbers increased.  While they were able to rig up grow lights to cultivate and harvest food, and pump systems for fresh water, they found supplies dwindling fast.  They reached out to the Nomads, offering Sanctuary to Nomads on the run and fresh mushrooms in exchange for food, medicine, and clothing.  Eventually, the Caves became something of a storage site and safe haven for nomads.  They expanded the cave systems for miles, with some tunnels crossing the border into Texas and rumors of an incredibly long tunnel that crosses into Mexico.  The main entrances and exits to the cave are closely guarded, and are the complexity and scale of the operation is virtually unknown to anyone outside Nomad circles, and even then only to those who deal directly with the Caves.   When environmentalists and state officials finally found out what was happening, it was too late, the Cavers were too well dug in, too entrenched.  They had built ducts and high power fans to turn the tear gas back on the attackers, they had set up their own generators, they had hacked into enough power lines that shutting them down would practically mean shutting down the entire southwest portion of New Mexico, and even then they would have to lay siege which could have lasted for months even if they could find all the new exits.  The environmentalists still bitch, although some have taken to joining the Cavers in the hopes of effecting change from within.  The state has given up on The Caves, leaving it to its new inhabitants. 


Inside the caves you will find an entire underground dwelling society.  Whi9le it is a sanctuary for those hoping to escape the law, it has also become something of a Mecca for anyone wishing to escape unemployment and starvation on the road. The Caves have their own doctors, mostly ripperdocs who lost their license to practice above, but also couple who just decided to get away from the trappings of modern society.

The Caves themselves are not a Nomad Market, but their close proxi
mity to the New Mexico Free Trade Zone is no coincidence and many of the goods smuggled through The Caves end up there.    The Caves are also the central destination of the Nomad Underground Railroad, where a nomad who needs a new life and a new identity can come and receive both, for a hefty fee.  There are even a few cosmetic surgeons to give them a new face to go with that identity.  For the most part, life in The Caves is self sufficient, but raw materials, tools, electronics, and luxuries like food that doesnít grow underground will always fetch hefty trade in goods, service, or lodging.

Unfortunately, all is not paradise in the dark, and in some of the more isolated and dangerous parts of the cave have become home to less social folks, scavengers and thieves, who dwell deep in the shadows.  Wandering off alone can be deadly, and you should never go off in any side passages you donít know unless accompanied by a trusted and skilled guide.  There are reports of these scavengers even coming into the main areas, and stealing women and children, though this is rare.  Raffen Shiv have also made a few raids into the caves, they are usually stopped well before they get far in enough in to cause any real damage, but they are getting bolder and there are rumors they may have a man on the inside.