Camping at Fenton Lake State Park
Fenton Lake State Park is a popular destination for campers, fishermen, and families looking to enjoy the outdoors. Located in the beautiful Jemez Mountains of northern New Mexico, the park features a scenic high-altitude lake and a richly forested landscape with abundant wildlife.
Campgrounds: The park has a number of camping areas with various amenities. Campsites may include developed sites with picnic tables, fire rings, and nearby restrooms.
RV Camping: While there are campsites that can accommodate RVs, the availability of hookups such as water, electric, or sewage might be limited or non-existent. Check current facilities before planning your trip.
Group Camping: There may be facilities for groups, but reservations are typically required in advance. Certain areas might be designated for group use with larger space to accommodate more people and gear.
Backcountry Camping: For those seeking a more rustic experience, backcountry camping could also be an option, requiring hikers to pack in and out all necessary supplies.
Reservations and Fees
Reservations: For some of the campsites and group areas, reservations can be made online or over the phone through the state park's reservation system. It is recommended to book in advance, especially during peak seasons and holidays.
Fees: Camping fees are usually charged per night and can vary depending on the type of campsite and amenities. Day-use fees may also apply for those not staying overnight.
Activities and Amenities
Fishing: Fenton Lake is stocked with trout, making it a great location for fishing. A New Mexico fishing license is required for all anglers aged 12 and over.
Hiking: There are several hiking trails in and around the park, offering opportunities to explore the natural beauty of the area.
Wildlife Watching: The park’s habitat supports a variety of wildlife. Visitors might see birds, deer, squirrels, and other forest animals.
Picnicking: There are designated areas for picnics equipped with tables and grills.
Boating: Non-motorized boating is allowed on the lake. Kayaks, canoes, and paddleboards are common.
Rules and Regulations
Fishing Regulations: All anglers must follow New Mexico fishing regulations, including limits on catches and use of appropriate bait and tackle.
Fire Safety: Campfires may be allowed in designated areas, but visitors must follow fire safety rules and heed any fire restrictions, especially during dry seasons.
Pets: Pets are generally allowed but must be kept on a leash and under control at all times. Owners are responsible for cleaning up after their pets.
Wildlife: Do not feed the wildlife. Feeding animals can disrupt their natural behaviors and may lead to negative encounters.
Leave No Trace: Visitors are encouraged to follow Leave No Trace principles, which include packing out all trash, leaving what you find, and minimizing the impact of your campsite.
Weather and Best Time to Visit
Weather: The weather can be unpredictable, and temperatures may drop significantly at night due to the higher elevation. Be prepared for changing conditions.
Best Time to Visit: Late spring through early fall is generally the most popular time to visit. However, the park offers year-round activities, and winter can be a serene time for those prepared for snow and colder temperatures.
Access: While some facilities and areas may be accessible to those with disabilities, it is advisable to check with the park ahead of time to understand the extent of accessibility.
Park Office: For up-to-date information and any specific inquiries, contacting the Fenton Lake State Park office directly is recommended. They can provide the latest on campsite availability, weather conditions, and any recent changes to park policies.