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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

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).

How can I get more information about state parks?

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