David and Cora Candelaria

See More Ice Caves Family History

Dave, his wife Cora and their young daughter first came to manage the Ice Caves in 1946. It was love at first sight when the young family arrived here and began the tourist operation that exists to this day. It was an arduous task at first to bring visitors to this area before there were any signs, paved highways, electricity or phone service in the area. For over fifty years Dave and Cora have devoted their lives, promoting this scenic treasure keeping with the ideals of natural conservation and historic preservation.

In recognition of his longstanding efforts to promote tourism for New Mexico, Dave was recently inducted into the New Mexico Tourism Hall of Fame by the Tourism Association of New Mexico. Catch Dave on the digitally remastered Land of Fire and Ice Video - DVD, available through our Virtual Trading Post.