Jemez Falls Campground is located in a stunning Ponderosa Pine and forest meadow environment. The campground elevation is 7,880 feet above sea level. Come prepared for warm days and cool nights. Excellent hiking opportunities are available, including a short hike to Jemez Falls or a longer hike along the East Fork Trail, both of which can be accessed from the campground . Thank you for choosing USFS Jemez Falls Campground for your visit. Please remember that this campground is special. Help keep it clean and beautiful by using the trash dumpsters and recycle bins for paper, plastics and metals and do not place trash in the recycle bins. Have a wonderful stay camping in the Jemez Mountains.
Overnight camping, fishing, and hiking are main attractions. Other recreational activities include outdoor photography and nature viewing. The campground is within the heart of the Jemez National Recreation Area.
The campground contains 51 overnight tent and RV/trailer campsites. There is paved access from the highway and paved internal roads to individual campsites. There are no RV hook-ups at the campground. Drinking water is provided from spigots conveniently located throughout the campground. Vault toilets provide basic sanitation needs. A campground host is on duty during the summer camping season.
The East Fork Jemez Wild and Scenic River runs close to the campground. The campground is situated on rolling terrain shaded by pines and sunny in open meadows.
Jemez Falls, the largest waterfall in the Jemez Mountains, is a half mile hike from the campground. The Valles Caldera National Preserve and Bandelier National Monument are within short driving distance along the Jemez Mountain Trail National Scenic Byway.
Charges & Cancellations
ADA Access: N
Imagine 1.25 Ma ago an eruption blew apart the landscape of Northern New Mexico that would rival the shear volume erupted by the world famous Yellowstone hotspot! Jemez Falls and its namesake campground are the closest, largest, and most developed CG to the Valles Caldera proper and the entrance to the caldera's access roads. The Jemez Falls CG is more developed than the nearby primitive (dispersed) sites that surround the flanks of the caldera proper, this CG offers 50 single sites and 2 double sites, $10 and $50 respectively. Most of the sites can accommodate RVs and trailers up to 40' in length with good options for tent camping as well. Each site has the usual metal fire ring, along with picnic tables and a paved driveway/parking area. You can reserve sites from mid May through Mid September.
Even if you plan to stay here for a couple weeks (which is the limit) you'll have more than enough to keep you preoccupied! If you want to drive around and hike or fish in the caldera proper then you will need to go to the Valles Caldera Visitors Center and buy a pass. They typically cost $25 but when we visited during the International Balloon Fiesta the fee was waived. If they are charging when you arrive, you can also use your National Parks Pass to get entrance. Be sure to arrive early on the weekends as they restrict the # of permits they hand out.
Now with all this exposed rock you know there's going to be some amazing climbing! All of the rock in the immediate area was created by the caldera and related volcanic and magmatic activity in the area in the past few million years. This gives you the opportunity to climb on some "bulletproof" welded tuff (hardened volcanic ash) much like what exists at the world famous Smith Rock State Park in Oregon. If you want to find out more about the interesting geology of the area you can look Here
Being a Ranger for the Dyrt allows us to test and review gear from time to time! This time we got to test out the Men's Free Rein Jacket by Red Ledge.
- First thing I want to say about this jacket is that it is super cheap for a rain jacket this rugged and with this many features! It was only ~90$ after shipping and is comparable to some of my other jackets that were 2-3x as much!
- I also really liked the mesh fabric on the inner portion of the breast pockets. It added another dimension of breath ability to the jacket to prevent condensation from building up on the inside. This was a nice addition to the gusseted armpits flaps to help air out.
- The last thing I really liked about this jacket was the amount of high-vis color options you had to choose from! I went with the Hi-Vis Orange which is close to a hunters orange and came in very handy as there was active hunting while we were hiking in the Valles Caldera.
- There were only a couple of things that we thought could have been improved. The first was to have the armpit openings be meshed on the inside to prevent it from opening wide up. We really liked that feature in the breast/side pockets and wished it had been incorporated into the armpits as well.
- The other thing was the inability to zip the jacket from the top or bottom, which would have allowed you to kind of blouse the bottom of the jacket.
- While other jackets have more features, this is a great, durable rain jacket at a price point that is reasonable and affordable for most. This was a great jacket to test and I anticipate using it for many more rainstorms and windy belays in the future.
High altitude early fall camping. Woke up to brisk fall morning covered in ice from overnight sleet. Tall standing pines made campground awesome place to stay.
We camped the night before having gotten there after dark. Paying was easy. The next day we awoke and hiked the falls. Literally a 2 minute drive down the road from camp.
This is a beautiful campground for either tent or evening camping. All sites are by reservation, so there was no stress about finding a spot. Standard vault toilets were pretty well kept, potable water faucets were well located, and firewood was plentiful, although the easiest to find was fairly green still. Sites were decently spaced, although camping etiquette reminders should have been in place (splitting wood at midnight, really???). There were good hiking trails nearby and water to play in, and the sites drained well in the afternoon rains. I look forward to returning.
Always busy…now a reservation site. Some sites around the edges or at the end of loops have some space between you and your neighbors, many in the middle are much closer together. We prefer to find dispersed camping in Jemez now that the designated campgrounds are generally so busy.
Jemez Falls campground is located in the heart of the Jemez, close to climbing, great hiking, fishing, hot springs, the Valles Caldera NP and Bandelier National Monument.
The campsites have plenty of space, and are more private than most campgrounds with the exception of those that are heavily wooded. The ponderosa canopy provides a fair amount of shade during the hot days. There are picnic tables and campfire rings at every site. There are vault toilets that are surprisingly clean. Just down the road are the Jemez Falls, a great place to splash in the river.
The campground is generally a family friendly environment where kids can roam in bicycle gangs, and dogs can chase a frisbee. Warning though, on many occasions the weekends have been a little noisy with rowdy campers that don’t think quiet hours apply. Don’t get me wrong, who doesn’t like kicking back by a campfire with friends? Who needs to be so loud that their voices ring through all of the camping loops and keep 70 other campers awake until 1 a.m? So yes, the quiet hours are from 10-6 or 8, but they don’t seem to be enforced. As a result, our family tries to weeknight camp at Jemez Falls whenever possible.
The views at this campground are breathtaking. The camp host is wonderful and super funny. The sites are very clean and so are the restrooms. There are lots of hiking trails around so go check it out.
Jemez is a short drive out of ABQ and close enough to be convenient for Santa Fe and Los Alamos residents. We drove up on a Sunday afternoon and found a clean campground to setup in. We had a whole area to ourselves as most people don't camp when it looks like there is a storm but we didn't mind the drizzle. I had my own camp fire kit and used the wood other camper left at their sites to keep up warm. It's bear and hunting season so we didn't wonder too far off trail but Jemez is a great spot to wonder around in. A good friend from Dallas refers to it as NM's Big Bend
Very nice and large campground. Lots of trees and shade. Very busy on weekends. Camp sites are huge. A few hiking trails nearby. Vault toilets only, no showers or other facilities. Definitely a good weekend get away if you are in the area.
This campground is a bit of a drive outside of Albuquerque, but it's worth it because it gets you up in the mountains where the landscape and scenery completely changes from ABQ. We went in the winter so of course there weren't many people and a lot of the areas were closed but it was still a great area and the hike to Jemez Falls is short and rewarding with great views. There is also a hot springs somewhere close by as well, although we didn't go.