The best camping near
Lincoln National Forest, NEW MEXICO

102 Reviews72 Campgrounds
Camping New Mexico Lincoln National Forest
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Most Recent Lincoln National Forest Camping Reviews
Very clean and well maintained

The staff was very friendly and helpful! They had a dog park, laundry room, clean showers and bathroom. The pools was closed but looked perfect! Thanks for such a great experience!

For the sunsets, the sunrises, and the dark skies

Our newest National Park offers inexpensive primitive camping along a backcountry loop trail. You'll need to carry your gear ~1 mile each way, so pack and plan accordingly. the hike isn't tough, but it will take you 20-30 minutes to get to your site and you want to be settled in time to enjoy the golden hour before sunset! There's no hiking after dark because it can be easy to get disoriented without too many landmarks in the area.

You can't make advance reservations because they can't predict when there will be missile tests that require closing the park for a bit, but they do generally know about a week in advance. Check out the website for updated information. Entry to the park was delayed until 9am two days during the week of my visit, so no camping on those nights. Be prepared to switch nights if necessary!

Arrive in time to check in with a ranger to get oriented and assigned a site. They'll provide you with a map. I arrived mid-day in early December and had a choice of several sites; there were only two other sites occupied. The trail to the site was fairly well marked, although a couple of them were lacking numbers. Your site will be in the low spots between the dunes and you'll be restricted to an area near the numbered pole. You'll be able to see others watching sunsets and sunrises from the tops of the dunes, but once at your site, you're in a private world.

Winter nights are cold and dark…I think I would have enjoyed it more in the autumn or spring with longer and somewhat warmer days, but I loved watching the full moon rise as the sun set. My tent was coated in frost by morning. Camping in the park is the only way to enjoy the sunrises, though my December morning was quite foggy. The last water is available at the visitor's center; bring plenty, esp. in the summer months. You may use a small camp stove for cooking, but it has to be off the ground. There are composting toilets at the parking area, but you'll need to dig a cathole or carry out your waste from the campsite.

Wonderful campground.

Owners and managers are helpful, informative, gracious folks. Campsites are level, pull through with full hookups. The location is terrific for wildlife watching, day trips to historically interesting sites, and campground living. Facilities are clean and well cared for. Our number one choice for all seasons camping.

Clean

Clean campground. Staff was pleasant

In town mountain retreat

If you want to stay in a mountain retreat but close to downtown Ruidoso, NM then this is a perfect place to be. Large abundant pine trees provide lots of shade. Bathrooms with shower are NEW, CLEAN, AND PRIVATE. Also provided is laundry room, small workout facility, sauna, gathering pavilion. We felt welcomed the minute we drove in. We have seen many new updates Including water,electric, and sewer hookups.

Urban yet peaceful location...

Enjoyed two nights at this KOA. Very friendly staff and great sites. Location appears to be in an urban setting but you don’t get that feeling once onsite.

Great Overnight on our way from the Caverns to White Sands

Beautiful drive on Highway 82 west towards Cloudcroft. Stop at the roadside petting zoo! 

Apache appeared to be the only campground of the three open in late September. Super nice hosts and well maintained - there were even trash cans and hand sanitizer in the restroom which was a nice touch. 

The sites were relatively far apart and backed up into a nice wooded area. 

Hardly anyone else there on a weeknight in September. 

Strange animal noises at night!

My favorite

Beautiful, peaceful. Loved it.

Diamond in the rough!

Would have given it 5 stars but the road going in to campsites are very rough and in of need some TLC! With that being said this is a beautiful place to park your RV and enjoy the beautiful scenery. Full hook ups for $33. During our stay we had regular visits from a group of about 11 male mule deer! Bring your hummingbird feeders you won’t be disappointed! We will be back!

Beautiful! Reminds me of Colorado

My husband and I wanted a cool getaway during the heat of Texas summer, and although Cloudcroft was 9.5-10 hours from home, it was worth it. Being from Colorado I was seeking the cool evenings, crisp air, pine tree smells and sounds. Plus some REAL hiking at altitude. We stayed at the Saddle Campground, which is one of maybe 4-5 campgrounds in the area. They are paved for trailers/campers, but no hookups or water. Just pit bathrooms, which was fine by us. There was dispersed camping on 568, which is a turn off 244. We chose this campground for the view but also because the hosts at the Pines campground were bizarre about rules…like when we went for a hike on the little Fir trail in the area, they got upset with us for walking through a campground. The hikes in the area are legit - we went over to Bailey canyon and saw maybe 2 people. We did a loop from 568 north and back down through Bailey canyon. There’s also the OSHA trail that’s mostly easy with great views of the trestle and White Sands in the distance. I can’t wait to go back!