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Know Before You Go – FAQs

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Welcome and Bienvenidos to the “Land of Enchantment!”

New Mexico is known for its breathtaking sunsets and mountain air. From high desert to aspen vistas our 35 state parks have something for everyone!  Whether it be a mountain hike or water skiing at one of our lake parks, there is always something new for you and your family to experience.

Know Before You Go

The Frequently Asked Questions will be updated to provide the latest information. We look forward to serving you on your next adventure at a New Mexico State Park.


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Park Safety Tips 101
    1. Bring plenty of food and water
    2. Recreate with friends
    3. Plan your trip and leave the plan with a loved one or at the park visitor center
    4. Ensure that your cell phone is fully charged
    5. Know your limitations
    6. Observe wildlife at a safe distance
    7. Stay on the trail
    8. Take breaks during your excursion
    9. Ensure your pets are properly secured
    10. Wear your life jacket
Can I buy a day-use Pass online?

Yes. We encourage you to buy a Day Use Pass online from Reserve America even before you get to the park. You can also buy your $5 Day Use Pass when you get to the park at one of our many self-pay stations.

We encourage visitors to have the exact cash amount, as change cannot be made through the self-pay system.

To purchase a Day Use Pass – Click Here

Camping Rules
  • Quiet hours are between 10:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m.
  • Check in time is 4pm, after this deadline the site will open for new reservations. No Refunds.
  • Campsite check-out time is 2:00 p.m
  • Campsites can be reserved six (6) months in advance.
  • Campers may not retain and leave a campsite vacant for more than 24 hours.
  • Campers are prohibited from moving to another camp site once in the park without coordinating the move with state park staff.



Camping Fees

The reservation fee is non-refundable.

  • Reservation – non-refundable
    • $4 for 1 night,
    • $8 for 2 nights and
    • $12 for 3 or more nights.
  • Cancellation fee per night
    • $9 for 1 night
    • $13 for 2 nights
    • $17 for 3 or more nights.
Annual Camping Pass (ACP)
  • It may take up to three weeks to receive your pass in the mail.
  • To ensure effective delivery, please double-check your mailing address and immediately contact Reserve America to update the address if needed. [1-877-664-7787]
  • If making an online reservation the ACP number must be entered at the time of online checkout.
  • State Park staff will verify your pass upon your arrival. Your ACP has two parts, one for your tow vehicle and one for the camping unit. The tow vehicle portion of your ACP must be permanently affixed to the lower left-hand portion of your tow vehicle windshield. The camping unit portion of the ACP must be affixed to a window on your camping unit where it is visible from the outside. If you don’t have a camping unit (i.e. tent camping) both parts of the ACP must be permanently affixed to the lower left-hand portion of your vehicle. An ACP is valid for a full 12 months from the month and year of issue.
  • An ACP covers the base camping fee and can only be applied during the valid 12-month pass period.
  • The ACP can only be used by the person who purchased it; it cannot be transferred to another person.
  • The ACP cannot be used for more than one campsite at a time.
  • The ACP cannot be used to make reservations at more than one state park for the same period of time.
Annual Day-Use Pass (ADU)
  • ADU is valid for a full 12 months from the month and year of issue.
  • ADU is not valid for reservations.
  • ADU is not valid for camping, yurts, lodge, cabins, or reservation of group shelters.
  • An ADU should hang from the rearview mirror of your vehicle when your vehicle is parked in a New Mexico State Park.
  • An ADU placard is transferable and valid in any vehicle.
  • Retain this letter (or a copy) in your vehicle and keep a copy safe at home, as it serves as your receipt.
  • An ADU entitles you to day admission at 34 of 35 New Mexico State Parks. Living Desert Zoo and Gardens State Park in Carlsbad is the only state park for which separate entry fees are charged.
  • Vehicles in the park between 9:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. are subject to camping fees.
  • Customers with an ADU can access event facilities (e.g., group shelter, lodge, rally site) to attend an event for the day.


Will my National Parks pass work at New Mexico State Parks?

National/Federal discount passes are not accepted at NM State Parks. This includes Golden Age and Golden Access.

Which Parks remain closed to camping?
  • PLEASE NOTE: The Rio Grande Nature Center State Park, Mesilla Valley Bosque State Park, Cerrillos Hills State Park, and Living Desert Zoo and Gardens do not offer camping but will continue to provide day-use access. Please visit their park page for hours of operation.
What facilities are closed?

Some visitor centers, group shelters, and special-use facilities are closed. Check the specific park page for additional information.

Can I reserve a group shelter for the day?

Group shelters are available in some parks by reservation. Check the specific park pages and the campsite reservations pages for additional information.

Can I build a campfire?

In parks that are open for camping, some parks may allow for campfires and others may not depending on the local fire conditions. Please see the Parks Alerts section for each park for the latest on fire restrictions and other information.

Are pets allowed?

Pets are allowed at most state parks. At Rio Grande Nature Center State Park and Living Desert Zoo & Gardens State Park only service dogs are allowed. Please remember to bring food and water for your furry friends.

Are boats required to be registered (i.e. Certificate of Number) ?

Before heading out on the water, please ensure your boat registration (Certificate of Number) is current. All N.M. Motor Vehicle Division offices are open for vessel registration and expired registration can be renewed online. Click here to renew your registration online. For all other vessel processing, the New Mexico Motor Vehicle Division field offices are open for appointments. Click here to make an appointment.

Is swimming allowed?

Some parks have designated no swimming areas. In areas where swimming is allowed, swim at your own risk. It is recommended that children have adult supervision and wear a life-jacket when they are near the water (e.g., shoreline, river bank).

Late/Cancellation Policy
Unoccupied campsites reserved through Reserve America or the park will be made available to other visitors if the reservation holder fails to occupy the site or notify either party by 4 p.m. on the day following the scheduled arrival date. After this deadline, the site will open up for new reservations. No refunds will be provided to the original reservation holder.
How can I get more information about state parks?

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