Sunday, May 20, 2012

Mesa Campground, Lake Roberts, NM


Mesa Campground, Lak Roberts, NM

We spent a few nights at Lake Roberts, a 41 mile drive northeast of Silver City. It’s only about 25 miles had we taken Hwy 15, but is not recommended for trailers over 20’ and is a narrow, twisty, steep road in spots, so we took the easier although longer way around and up Hwy 35. It was a scenic drive, passing by mines, through the little town of Mimbres, then into the Gila National Forest.

There are 2 campgrounds, Mesa and Upper End, run by the US Forest Service. We chose Mesa since they have some sites with water and electric and it was getting into the 80’s. We knew we would be spending a day at the Cliff Dwellings, and didn’t want to risk locking up Quincy and Elliot in the heat while we were gone. It is $10 to dry camp, $15 for hookups, or half that with the Senior Pass. Unfortunately the electric sites don’t have any views of the lake, so Jim and I decided to move across the road to one of the non-hookup sites after we got back from sightseeing. The view was just too good to pass up, and we knew we’d be hanging around the next day and could leave everything open.

Mesa Campground Site 19


The only drawback to this area is there is absolutely no cell or internet service, but even Jim admitted it was kind of a relief not to have the computer compelling him to waste time.

There are two nice hiking trails from the picnic area down the road, with access trails from the campground. They are only a couple miles each but interesting trails. The Purgatory Chasm Trail takes you into a small slot canyon and along a dry river bed. It’s nothing like the slot canyons in Arizona or Utah, but still a pretty hike with a bit of rock scrambling, which is always fun.

Debbie getting ready to enter the slot.


We didn’t get too far and had to find our way out when we came to this pool.



Lots of nice big rocks.



The other trail goes around the lake and crosses the small dam, with views of the water along the entire trail.




What made it most entertaining was watching all the bullfrogs hop into the water as we approached them along the edge of the lake. Some of them were huge, and they all made the funniest sounds as they leapt into the water after hearing us coming.



We also saw ducks, coots, and hundreds of blue and orange dragonflies.


This is a great place to explore the Gila National Forest and also just to come and relax. One of us sure has that relaxing down to a science.



  1. What a great place..... I want to come! Looks like a must on the travel llst1

    1. I live in Las Cruces and camp often in the area. Lake Roberts is currently being worked on by the state and has been drained. Hopefully the work will be completed soon and the lake will be allowed to refill. It is still a great area to visit with beautiful scenery and places to explore.

  2. Looks like a great place to camp and hike. Your cat is just like ours, they love to sleep in boxes too! Enjoy your stay.

  3. Looks like some fine hiking, lovely pictures. If you are like me, it is nice to be forced away from the computer by no signal. But they how did you post this???


  4. Although it doesn't feel like we are back in civilization, we have a decent Verizon signal where we are now. It was a nice 5 day break from the internet. I wrote several posts on Livewriter and will publish them over the next couple days. We are having a great time in this part of New Mexico.

  5. Still enjoying your blog! Hey, you might be in a good place to view the eclipse this evening.

  6. Next time we go to Silver City, we will check out Lake Roberts.

  7. We don't get good internet or cell service here either, and we are with Jim...been kind of liberating.

    Love the photos...that hike looks awesome. Good hiking boots look in order for that trail.

    That water looks so blue and calming! Love it. Enjoy your exploration of the Forest.