New Mexico is one of the United States’ most beautiful areas within which to camp, with 35 million acres of public land, private campgrounds, and hundreds of places to comfortably park that RV for a week or pitch a tent. The natural beauty of the landscape truly deserves the state’s descriptive motto “The Land of Enchantment”. After reading this general overview on camp grounds in New Mexico, please take the time to browse the websites which I have researched in preparation for this overview.
The federal lands, state lands and Indian reservations offer abundant camping opportunities. Reservations are not taken at national parks. The New Mexico state authorities instituted a trial reservations program in 2000 for lands managed by the U.S. Forest Service, so check with them if you want the certainty of a confirmed reservation.
You may drive on the roads in most of the national forests and Bureau of Land Management (BLM) holdings and pitch a tent, but your campsite MUST be located in excess of a quarter mile from the shorelines, stream beds, hiking trails and roads, and you MUST comply with the managing agency’s rules of conduct, i.e. fire restrictions.
Information concerning the hundreds of private campgrounds in the state can be had by consulting the chambers of commerce for the towns which interest you. Though almost all of the state parks accommodate RVs in one fashion or another, the facilities are of a limited nature.
For the sake of convenience, New Mexico traditionally divides the state’s camping areas into 6 broad geographic regions. They are: Central, North Central, Northeast, Northwest, Southwest, and Southeast.
The Central region includes Albuquerque, Belen, and the surrounding area. The North Central covers the Chama River Corridor, Espanola, Santa Fe, Taos, Ojo Caliente, and the area around these places. The Northeast camping region encompasses Angel Fire, Cimarron, Eagle Nest, Rociada, and the area around these towns.
New Mexico’s Northwest camping area has the Farmington-Aztec and the Grants-Gallup regions. The Southwest geographic region includes the towns of Las Cruces, Socorro, TorC, Elephant Butte, Silver City and the topography which surrounds them. Finally, the Southeast has Alamogordo, Cloudcroft, Mayhill, Ruidoso, and Roswell.
There are 13 KOA managed campgrounds in New Mexico and they accept reservations. RV owners usually prefer these campsites because of the predictably reliable extent to which the staff goes