Caballo Lake SP--Riverside Recreation Area (below dam)

Caballo Lake SP--Riverside Recreation Area (below dam)

Caballo, New Mexico 87931

Caballo Lake State Park Official Website
Caballo Lake State Park map

Birds of Interest

Bell’s Vireo is sporadically reported here mid-April to mid-September. 

About this Location

The Riverside Recreation Area is south of the Caballo Reservoir dam on the Rio Grande.

About Caballo Lake State Park

See all hotspots at Caballo Lake State Park

Caballo Lake State Park (5,326 acres) is located on Caballo Reservoir, a shallow lake about 12 miles south of Elephant Butte Reservoir along the Rio Grande. The lake, at an elevation of 4,100 feet, covers 11,500 acres of surface area and is about 25 feet at its deepest point. It provides excellent winter viewing of grebes, raptors, geese and ducks, quail, gulls, doves, owls, woodpeckers, phoebes, wrens, thrushes, thrashers, sparrows, and finches. The Caballo Christmas Bird Count (which includes Percha Dam and Animas Creek) usually has the highest number of species in New Mexico. Just below Caballo, the Rio Grande looks the way it did 100 years ago. It’s one of the best examples of riparian woodland left in the state.

CaballoLake is a narrow, quiet reservoir, flanked by bare, dun-colored mountains with screw-bean mesquite. Adjacent to the lake is desert scrub and riparian woodland.

Directions: About 16 miles south of Truth or Consequences on I-25, take Exit 59. Turn onto NM-187 and follow signs to Caballo Lake State Park on left, less than 2 miles. The west shore of Caballo Lake has a paved road and two well-developed campgrounds for day or overnight use.

Framed against the Caballo Mountains, this lake boasts an array of water recreation, such as boating, kayaking, canoeing, sailing, swimming, and fishing.

Choose from 170 campsites, with plenty of sites with utility hookups for RVs. There’s just as much to do off the water while hiking, horseback riding, birding, and picnicking.


  • Restrooms on site

  • Entrance fee

Content from Caballo Lake State Park Official Website, John Montgomery, and Southwest New Mexico Birding Trail

Last updated March 7, 2024