We really enjoyed this park. The park is a little bit of a trek to get to, and you drive through the little town/village of Villanueva which looks like a little town plucked out of Central America with run down houses and shanties. Once in the park: it's a beautiful little park, with the Pecos River running through it. The kids loved playing in the river, we also hiked to the top of the canyon which had great views. Kids road bikes through the park and meet several other kids who were staying in park. The other campers were nice and helpful. They clean the restrooms twice a day, and the showers had good hot water. Forget trying to get OTA TV service or cell service, as the park is located in the bottom of a canyon. We would stay here again. Yes, it does not have a ton of amenities, but its a State park and for $14 there is not much one can complain about. We camped here in a Travel Trailer.
We started on the upper loop, steep hill up and down, no hook-ups, beautiful view. After the Memorial week-end people left, we moved to lower level, to a site that backed up to the river, with electric. Very pleasant. The hosts and rangers were especially nice. Restroom and shower were kept very clean. A drive from I-25, but well worth it. It is a very busy park, so you may want to make reservations. We would definitely stop again, if in the area. We camped here in a Motorhome.
This is a beautiful site and a good place to get away from it all because there is absolutely no phone service here; you must go all the way back to the highway. Satellite service is OK if you get the right spot. The sites on the upper level have a great view. The road up is steep but not so bad it would be hard to get there. No services on the upper level. Some of the sites have covered patios, and there are firepits. On top of the daily fee (quoted price is for power and water site) there is a $10 reservation fee. There is a small store and post office in the town about two miles away. I probably won't be back, but it would be a very nice place to stay for a while for some peace and quiet. We camped here in a Motorhome.
We stayed here 4 nights while day tripping to Pecos National Monument and Santa Fe National Forest/Pecos wilderness. Beautiful setting in Pecos River valley. 10 mile drive from I-25 down a winding, generally level, narrow, highly scenic 2-lane road. As other reviewers have noted, there are two sections of the campground - riverfront, and the upper loop, which has views of the river valley. The upper loop does not have electric and has VERY steep roads. The biggest issue with this older campground is that it mixes day use with the camping areas and believe me, when your site is next to the group shelter and there is a 3-day family reunion with lots of music going on in the adjacent group shelter, it can get on your nerves a bit. We had site 12A, which had great access to the Pecos River and more importantly, shade. We had to fill our freshwater tank as there was no water at the site. Also, no camp host or ranger to ask questions about sites, etc. We finally saw the ranger cleaning the bathroom the day after we arrived. Two nice short steep hikes from the CG with beautiful views. Otherwise, not a whole lot to do other than relax riverside, play in the water, maybe fish for some trout. No Verizon (have to go close to I-25). Satellite TV fine. We camped here in a Fifth Wheel.
This state park is in an absolutely beautiful location. The sites are in a narrow valley on the Pecos River. A good portion of the sites are directly on the river. Utility sites are $14, non-utility sites are $10. If you're looking for a bit of separation between you and your neighbor, I would avoid the electric/water sites. It's also worth noting: most of the utility sites share a spigot, so make sure you bring a splitter. Some of the non-utility sites offer a bit more privacy. A few sites are pull-through: 1A and 3A with hookups, 18B and 19B are without. Others are quite large for easy backing. A few are a bit cramped. If you don't care about being right on the river, definitely go for the sites on the El Cerro Upper loop. There are some absolutely stunning and secluded sites overlooking the valley and river below. The loop looks daunting from below but is easily traversed with a trailer. I might be concerned with some of the longest rigs, however. Overall the campground is very well maintained and the staff is very friendly. We did have the misfortune of being two sites away from "that one group" with the loud music and drunken yelling, but the springtime flow of the river drowned out most of the noise and the 10:00 PM quiet hours are enforced. Park gates are locked at 10:00 PM, but you can still exit via an exit-only tire-ripper setup if you need to get out. We should also mention that portions of Highway 3 (between I-25 and Villanueva, if you're coming from the north) are a bit tight, so if you're not entirely comfortable driving a large rig you might want to reconsider. Also most of this approximately 13 mile stretch of Highway 3 is 25 MPH, so it takes longer than it looks on the map. We camped here in a Travel Trailer.
Nice park! It's quiet, especially for a state park, and the scenery is really nice, especially along the river sites as there's a very tall cliff just across the (narrow) river to look at. Fun to watch the hawks hunt and, as night falls, the bats. Good views of the stars, and there's a footbridge across the river leading to a 1km overlook trail that's nice to hike. Choose your site carefully. I saw one that was in the visitor center parking lot, on asphalt. Not nearly as nice as the regular gravel sites. Most sites have an adobe picnic shelter. GPS users: Your GPS will send you halfway up the wrong mountain and turning around will be impossible until you then go all the way up said wrong mountain. Ignore Garmin. Go to the town of Villanueva, and take the only non-highway street out of town. There will be signs, but they're small and easy to miss. We camped here in a Motorhome.
A very pretty park that is very remote. The park is off State Road 3 approx 15 miles south of I-25, and 25 miles north of I-40. It's located alongside the burbling Pecos River. Don't trust your GPS - the road leading into the park is the north-most road in the village of Villaneuva, heading east. The GPS incorrectly showed the Park as being as being three miles south of town. We camped here in a Motorhome.
This is a very lovely well managed park. It does get crowded. Some of the sites are close together. I was there on a Thursday without reservations and had to settle for a tent site on the entrance road. I thought it would be noisy but the ranger closed the gate promptly at 10PM and opened it at 7AM. I spent a very quiet and peaceful night. I highly recommend this park. It is right on the Pecos River. There are good trails. There is a camping area on the mesa overlooking the park but the road up is only for the most daring RVer with a short rig and once you are there you will find it isn't half as nice as the riverside campsites. Unless you are tent camping be sure and get reservations. We camped here in a Tent.
Beautiful State Park located approx. 20 miles off of the I- 40 on hwy 3 in a narrow canyon with the Pecos River running through it. River was very silty (brown) but enjoyed the sound of the water. Some of the sites are close together , some have shelters and some don’t. Reservations are accepted, book early as this is a very popular park. Nice to see trees again after spending the last 10 weeks in New Mexico’s southern regions. Elevation here is 5,600 ft. No cell phone service. No problem getting a signal for our satellite TV. There are 12 electric sites with water nearby, ( long hose a must ) the rest are developed sites with water throughout the campground. The road is paved but the sites are either dirt, gravel or grass. Got to be a little dusty when windy but not too bad. Most of the sites appear to be level, some are in the trees and others are more out in the open. Water pressure was OK, and the electric hookup was fine. We had no problems finding room for our slideouts and tow vehicle. There was one tree branch when entering the Park we found to be a little low so be on the look out. Otherwise, there were no problems getting around and into a site. Most of the sites are roomy enough. The hiking trail starts on the other side of the footbridge which takes you to the canyon overlook. Fishing is year round, with best time to fish being in the Fall - Spring, and they do stock the river. Check the state park website for more info. They have a brochure you can download. There is a playground for the kids and a dump station which my husband said he didn’t even want to try and get into. It seems that this dump site was up on a hill with a steep drop off. We found a convenience store in the middle of town and a post office. Park rangers were very friendly and helpful. Enjoyed the park immensely until the weekend when thoughtless campers came in and blasted their music and couldn’t build a fire to save their lives. We were choking in the smoke. Wish someone would teach campfire 101.… We would return but probably mid week and in March or April.. We camped here in a Motorhome.