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Editor’s note: First in a series as the Journal looks around the map at New Mexico’s state parks.
Caballo Lake State Park
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. Park elevation: 4,447 feet.
City of Rocks State Park
City of Rocks is located between Silver City and Deming and gets its name from the incredible volcanic rock formations found here. It is a geologic formation made up of large, sculptured rock columns, or pinnacles, rising as high as 40 feet and separated by paths or lanes resembling city streets. Park elevation: 5,259 feet.
Elephant Butte Lake State Park
Elephant Butte Lake can accommodate watercraft of many styles and sizes: kayaks, jet skis, pontoons, sailboats, ski boats, cruisers, and houseboats. Park elevation: 4,527 feet.
Leasburg Dam State Park
A 25-minute drive from Las Cruces, it offers a beautiful cactus garden, several hiking trails, and opportunities for fishing, canoeing, kayaking and birding. Night sky programs are very popular at this park. Park elevation: 3,962 feet.
Mesilla Valley Bosque State Park
The park is located on the Rio Grande near Las Cruces and 1.5 miles from historic Mesilla. Visitors have many opportunities to view wildlife while strolling one of the self-guided nature trails. Park elevation: 3,879 feet.
Pancho Villa State Park
Located at the border of Mexico, the park exhibit hall and historic structures capture the history of the Pancho Villa Raid and historic Camp Furlong. It offers utility hookups and a playground for the kids. Park elevation: 4,073 feet.
Percha Dam State Park
This quiet park along the Rio Grande is shaded by tall cottonwoods and provides excellent fishing, relaxing camping, and outstanding bird watching. Park elevation: 4,447 feet.
Rockhound State Park
The rugged slopes of the Little Florida Mountains are the setting for this park, which boasts trails, unique geology, wildflower displays, and a peaceful campground. Park elevation: 4,520-5,400 feet.