Dennis P.

Rio Communities, NM

Joined August 2020

Former Park Ranger and Wildlife Refuge manager, now a Master Naturalist and woodworker.

Difficult to find the best spot.

Three roads fork off Fuller Rd. (A027) toward the river. The middle fork already had an RV in the flattest spot, which probably had the easiest access down the very steep canyon walls. We went farther west and had a steep hike into the canyon. I didn't camp, but advise there are no facilities, amenities, or anyone to hold your hand. And it's a fair amount of time to Silver City, so we were more aware of safety than usual. Birding is supposed to be great in-season but winter isn't that season.

Hoodoos and beasties

Rather hard to find the road onto the correct road to get to the right road! Once headed to the west look for the sign taking you to the right into a dry wash. Follow the arroyo past a giant "bread loaf" that is a geological unconformity. Drive into an abrupt canyon with straight walls and side slots. Eventually you run into a rock wall that can be traversed by scrambling around it and continue 1/2 mile to a short pour-off. Camping is allowed but be aware of flash floods. It's a narrow canyon with only one way out. A parallel road just to the south of San Lorenzo Canyon is all on BLM land (dispersed camping). Pack it in, pack it out.

The drive up is worth it.

We truck camped, but saw other people make it in their AWD SUV. Don't even think of bringing an RV of any size unless it's a cab-over that you don't mind scratching up. Once there you find cement tables spaced far enough apart for average camping privacy. Birding is good as there is a stream nearby. Good place for summer camping to escape the heat, but watch for precipitation that may make the road impassable for some time. It's a long way up there.

4x4 encouraged

The road in may require 4x4 depending on any precip or how one drives. Once there, you're rewarded with Adirondack shelters and shaded sites. We even had split firewood at our site courtesy of a fire crew, I think. A trail starts from the last campsite that climbs in altitude to some awesome views. No water, toilets, or other amenities, but clean sites w/ picnic tables.

First to Review
Beautiful boondocking.

No facilities (it's boondocking) but beautiful! We camped upstream of the lake in a shallow valley with a dirt road leading to the site/area. We could walk to the lake and across the dam to explore the creek behind it. I slipped in the creek and dislocated my little finger on our second day, so that ended the trip for me. Had to drive to Reserve for medical help.

The area is open grassland with ponderosa pines scattered around in clumps. As you hike into the Wilderness Area (the first one designated as such) the forest gets thicker. Snow Lake is well-known for trout fishing, and people know this. We were there on Memorial Day and it was a bit crowded with fishermen.

There is an established campground there also (Dipping Vat) if you want a picnic table and grill, but we were all equipped for boondocking. High altitude means cold nights, so come prepared with all amenities self-contained, and all contingencies anticipated. (Like my dislocation!)

Not open

This campground has not been open for many years due to vandalism.

Shady sites

We had perfect weather for 3 days. All the amenities you'd want. Right on the Guadalupe River so I could kayak easily. Very well kept and clean. Cabins for rent too.

Great service

We met with 18 degree temps (Feb) and our truck wouldn't start the next morning. The park staff contacted the BEST repair shop in Abilene for us, and they fixed us right up.

The park is large with many trails, bird feeder, and yurts you can rent. I bet it's nice in Spring.

Very nice host

The park was not too far off the highway, so traffic noise was prevalent, but after dark it wasn't bad. The owner/host personally helped us to our site and assisted with hook-ups. He said he had plans to enlarge the park. Nice enough for an overnighter, and we would use it again.

Out-of-the-way

Very nice campground that was almost full during the pandemic. Beautiful pines, lots of amenities,clean and quiet. We hiked to the abandoned turquoise mine and took in the views from atop the hill. And we got the Passport America discount!