The idea of BLM camping has fascinated me since before we bought a travel trailer. I always loved the thought of camping in nature without having to give up luxuries like my cozy bed and clean bathroom. All while enjoying scenic landscapes outside our windows and deep dark skies perfect for stargazing…yes please!
Without a little RV prep though, boon docking (camping with limited or no hookups) for multiple nights can be difficult. When visiting New Mexico this spring we weren’t ready to invest in upgraded solar or battery banks to run fully off-grid, but didn’t want to stay in a private RV park either. Situated conveniently near White Sands National Monument and Carlsbad Caverns though, we found the perfect solution…Valley of Fires Recreation Area.
Valley of Fires is a BLM campground in Carrizozo, New Mexico. As it offers campsites with natural backdrops of mountains and sweeping flatlands, this recreation area is similar to many other BLM properties. Unlike other BLM locations though, this campground includes electric, water, and a dump station. These were amenities we did not expect on BLM land. At $18 per night, the sites were well worth the cost.
Knowing everything the campground offered and that it was first come first serve, we were pleasantly surprised that there were a handful of sites still available when we arrived. They were nice sites also! The pavement was super smooth and our 33’ trailer fit with no problem.
In addition to the hookup amenities, I could go on and on about everything we loved at this campground. An immaculate bathroom was located across from our campsite. Adjacent was a visitor center with a gift shop (and the friendly staff was great about answering our questions). Every campsite had a covered picnic shelter, grill, and trash receptacle. The view from our camper was a 5,000 year old lava flow (featuring an amazing boardwalk and trail). And at night the remote location prevented lights from interfering with the view of the stars.
If you’re planning to visit White Sands, Carlsbad Caverns, or anywhere else in the vicinity, we’d highly recommend camping at Valley of Fires. Of all the places we stayed on during that trip, this location was definitely our favorite.
Valley of Fires Recreation Area
Carrizozo, New Mexico
GPS coordinates: 33.68226167 / -105.9224303