Avalon Lake, Carlsbad, NM

Avalon Lake

Bureau of Reclamation

Camping Near Carlsbad, NM

Avalon Lake is open to dispersed camping and fishing along its shoreline, particularly on the south end of the lake at Avalon Road (County road 602). There are no permits or reservations required. It's not exactly clear what the maximum camping limit is, but it's likely 14 days.


Avalon Lake

Bureau of Reclamation

Carlsbad Irrigation District

Tel: (575) 236-6390


GPS: 32.4936, -104.2488

Reservations: First come, first served

Camping Fee: None

Permit: none

Max Stay: 14 days

Amenities: None

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Camping at Avalon Lake

Make sure to bring a tire patch kit when you come here because there are a lot of nails laying around due to people burning pallets. It’s not uncommon to see someone here with a flat tire. There’s also a fair amount of trash on the ground.

The current dam was built by the US Bureau of Reclamation, and the reservoir itself is also owned by the Bureau. The Carlsbad Irrigation District operates the dam and oversees allotment of water to the numerous canals that feed farmlands throughout the area. The District is supposed to maintain the recreation lands along the banks, but doesn’t seem to have the manpower to do so.

The area has enough room to support three or four dozen full sized RVs stretching around the lake to the east, and north up to railroad bridge. The District owns all the land surrounding the lake including about 2 miles of riverbank up the Pecos River. But most of this land is unreachable to the public.

Avalon Lake campground is approached from Avalon Rd at Canal Street. Much of this land is BLM (shaded in yellow in the map above), and is open for camping too.

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