El Vado Lake recreation area is managed by the New Mexico State Parks. Dam operations are by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation.
El Vado Lake State Park
State Road 112
Tierra Amarilla, NM 87575
(877) 664-7787 (for reservations)
➠ Directions (Google Map)
Boating, camping, fishing, hiking, horseback riding (in north area), picnicking, water and winter recreation. A 5.5-mile scenic trail along the Rio Chama connects El Vado Lake with nearby Heron Lake.
El Vado Lake has a visitor center, modern campground with restrooms, boating ramp and two docks, and a beach. No lifegaurd present at the beach, swim at own risk.
Eight campgrounds are available with 80 developed campsites. Restrooms have water and vault toilets. Select restrooms have showers. Electric hookups and RV Dump station is also available.
• No lake use fees required.
• Fees for campground use.
• A valid New Mexico fishing license is required.
Designated as a coldwater fishery, largemouth bass, bluegill, rainbow trout, brown trout, lake trout and kokanee salmon are present. Salmon snagging allowed in the fall.
New Mexico Game and Fish
The lake is open to all types of water sports, including boating, swimming, jet skiing, sailing, windsurfing, and fishing.