Carson National Forest Provides Clarification on Developed Recreation Closures

Taos, NM– March 24, 2020 – Following the March 20, 2020 orderly closure of developed recreation sites on the five New Mexico forests, including the Carson National Forest, clarification was needed to communicate those specific developed recreation sites that have been closed under this order. The vast majority of the forest still remains available to visitors who want time outdoors. At this time, recreation opportunities include hiking and biking on trails, dispersed camping and other activities that support social distancing and small groups (less than 10 people).

Developed Recreation Sites that are Closed Under the March 20, 2020 Order

  • El Nogal (Camino Real Ranger District)
  • Echo Amphitheater (Canjilon Ranger District)
  • Cuchilla de Medio (Questa Ranger District)

Developed Recreation Sites that are Seasonally Closed – these areas are seasonally closed due to snow, or their scheduled opening date is typically in May.

Camino Real Ranger District:

  • Agua Piedra Campground (CG)
  • Amole Canyon Day Use
  • Capulin CG
  • Comales CG
  • Duran Canyon CG
  • Hodges facility
  • La Junta CG
  • La Sombra CG
  • Las Petacas CG
  • Pot Creek Cultural Site
  • Santa Barbara CG
  • Trampas Canyon facilities

Questa Ranger District:

  • Cabresto Lake CG
  • Cimarron CG
  • Columbine CG
  • Cuchilla CG
  • Elephant Rock CG
  • Fawn Lakes CG
  • Goat Hill CG
  • Junebug CG
  • Lower Hondo CG
  • McCrystal CG
  • Shuree Ponds Day Use
  • Twining CG


Canjilon Ranger District:

  • Canjilon Lakes CG
  • Trout Lakes CG

El Rito Ranger District:

  • El Rito CG and Group Shelter

Tres Piedras Ranger District:

  • Hopewell Lake CG
  • Lagunitas CG


Developed Recreation Sites where Facilities are Closed, but the Site Remains Accessible

  • Flechado (Camino Real Ranger District)
  • US Hill (Camino Real Ranger District)
  • Cebolla Mesa (Questa Ranger District)
  • Eagle Rock Lake (Questa Ranger District)
  • Rio de Los Pinos CG (Tres Piedras Ranger District)

The Carson National Forest asks members of the public to recreate responsibly by avoiding high-risk activities, like rock climbing, that increase the chance of injury or distress. Law enforcement and search and rescue operations may be limited due to COVID-19. In addition, visitors can help mitigate resource impacts while recreation sites are closed by bringing home their trash (pack it in, pack it out), and by appropriately managing human waste by burying it at least 6-8 inches deep and 200 feet away from water, trails and recreation sites. Visit the Interactive Visitor Map at for more information on available activities.

Please report any instances of vandalism to facilities to the local ranger district office.

All Carson National Forest offices are conducting business and providing services virtually. The Carson National Forest will continue to coordinate its COVID-19 response in alignment with all federal, state and local guidance.  Visitors to national forests are urged to take the precautions recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). For tips from the CDC on preventing illnesses like the coronavirus, go to:   

Contact information for Carson National Forest Headquarters and the ranger district offices is posted on the forest website. Updates on the Carson National Forest response to COVID-19 will also be posted on Facebook and Twitter.


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