Standard (Tent/RV)
Group
RV Sites
Tent Sites
Equestrian
Fires Allowed
Pets Allowed
About Water Canyon Campground

This campground is located at an elevation of 6,800 feet in the Magdalena Mountains.

Operator
National Forest
Access
Drive In
Walk In
Features
No ADA Access
Alcohol Allowed
No Drinking Water
No Electric Hookups
Fires Allowed
No Firewood Available
No Market
Pets Allowed
No Phone Service
Picnic Table
Not Reservable
No Showers
Toilets
Trash Available
No WiFi
+ More
RVs and Trailers
No Sanitary Dump
No Sewer Hookups
No Water Hookups
No Pull-Through Sites
Max Length: 22 ft.
Location
Water Canyon Campground is located in New Mexico
Latitude
34.0255 N
Longitude
-107.1324 W
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6 Reviews of Water Canyon Campground
Free for 2 More Years!

We loved this place. Attempted at first to camp at The Box down the road but it was really crowded so we came here and what a great choice! 

This is a FREE campground but plans are in the works to started charging in 2 years at $10/night. There are gravel tent and parking pads, picnic tables, fire rings, pit toilets and garbage.

When you first pull in there is a narrow opening to a rocky dirt road straight ahead and to the left is a day use picnic area. The sign at the beginning of the dirt road said trailers not advisable but one came down before we started up so we went for it. We have a 26 foot class C. Dirt road driving experience necessary. The road is quite narrow, rocky and has a couple washouts and tight turns but not impossible to navigate….use your best judgement! 

There were only a couple of other campers and the views are very nice. Some sites are close together however. There are pit toilets and garbage at the beginning of the campground and at the end loop. 

Great hiking area too! Further down the road where it says "no turn around" is a group site but the gate is locked and you'll need to contact National Forest Service if you want to use this area. 

There is no drinking water or cell reception from AT&T or Verizon. Pets allowed on a leash. Also there are free roaming cattle we saw on the main road in but none in the campground though there was poop evidence that they've been around. 

Along the dirt road hiking trails near the campground people have made other camping areas with rock fire pits. The roads to these areas are narrow and 4WD necessary.

A solid stop

Every year, we drive from Texas to Apache National Forest. Cibola is halfway. Every year, we make sure to stay the night at Water Canyon. First: the views. Secondly, the amenities. A level spot, with a fire ring, table and maintained vault toilets for $0. The most spacious spots are the first two, after that a six man tent is the largest tent you’ll fit on a level spot. We have never really explored further than our camp site, as our children are small and out number us. But for 12-36 hours, it is a beautiful stay that includes campfires, lizards and the occasional equestrian that lets our kids treat their horses. Treasured memories, unplugged and free.

Better sites up the road

Campground itself was closed due to the Covid-19 stuff going on. Decided to drive into the mountains more instead of turning right into the campground, and didn’t regret it. Took us out to copper trail 10 and there were 4-5 sites with fire rings already there. Beautiful area in the valley, and old copper mines all around.

Pleasant place, strange people

Have to agree with an earlier review of this site--the place is great, everything you'd want in a campground, but we encountered some strange visitors as well. We almost didn't stay because of the seemingly sketchy activity going on here, but it ended up being alright, and the campground itself is great. Nice area, picnic tables, firepits, vault toilets, trash and best of all, free.

We were climbing in the Socorro area for a few days and this site is about 20 minutes further down the road from the climbing area and about 30-35 minutes from Socorro. We stayed our first night here, and the next couple nights we just camped out at the climbing area, which proved much more pleasant (and equally free).

Rustic silence

Bathrooms but no showers. No water. Great campground. Beautiful view of rock faces across the canyon

First to Review
Great sites... sketchy visitors

This campground was great! Trails nearby, picnic tables, fire pits, and pit toilets…. Nice trees, good shade! We enjoyed smores that night! Lots of flies though…

However… while we stayed here there was a lot of strange traffic. We are guessing drug deals? All night long cars would come and go, meet up but never actually stay. They also were not cars that looked like lost outdoorsmen.

We used this as a site when rock climbing in Soccorro as it was right down the road!

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