Datil Well

No short text A surprising campground to find is the Datil Well campground. You get to camp in a Piñon-Juniper forest and hike the nature trail.

Campground data:

Controlling agency: Bureau of Land Management; Socorro Field Office
Official URL:BLM web page for the campground
Region: West-central; Datil Mountains.
Campsite count: 22.
Visual density: 0.00. Visual density not recorded.
Fee: $5.00.
Season: All year.
Dogs: Yes. on leash
Horses: Unknown.
Handicapped accessible: Unknown.
RV parking surface: gravel
RV pull-through spaces? Unknown.
Campground facilities: cooking grill, water, trash can(s), vault toilet(s), fire pit.
Campground attractions: hiking, history, year-round access.

When we visited it:

Date: 2000-12-29
Cleanliness: 9.


Waypoint Type Description
DWCGCampgroundDatil Well campground


Paper maps:
Map name Cartographer Year Scale Topo map? Online access Notes
Gila National Forest US Forest Service 1997 1:126720 N from Amazon (purchase) North half. Includes part of the Apache National Forest.
Wildernesses of New Mexico US Forest Service 1981 1:1000000 N No online copies. Base map with national forests, wilderness areas and highways.

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Getting to the campground:

From the town of Datil, head either west on US 60 or southwest on NM 12. Watch for the sign indicating the turnoff to the campground. The drive from the highway is about a mile.
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About the campground:

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The campsites are nestled in amongst many piñon and juniper.
What more to add?
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Plants we saw around the campground:

Reader comments about this campground:

On Tue Dec 6 11:45:27 2005 Tom Wheatley from Jefferson, Maryland said:
Our Boy Scout Troop stayed at the Group site one night before backpacking at the nearby DoubleH Ranch. The site was beautiful, well maintained and very peaceful. Our hosts were great in suggesting some sights to check out on the way down. Their number can be obtained from the Forest Service.

The group site has a nice shelter, outhouse with solar lighting (nice to able to find the building at night, it is really dark out there), and very tasty water.

On Sun May 18 13:45:30 2008 DesertHawk from Las Cruces, New Mexico said:
May 14-17, 2008: Datil Well Campgound is really nice. We had a really great trip. It was somewhat cold at times, but Sat. it was warming up again. We had rain all afternoon on Thursday the 15th of May. We had just started a walk when it started to sprinkle and thunder. The thunder got us going back to the Scamp. We spend the rest of the day reading & napping in the egg with the Coleman Cat. Heater going. It did not get down to freezing but in the lower to mid-30's. Daytime temp's in the 50s to 60s, depending on the day. There were more empty sites than filled ones. The promise of Quiet and Solitude was good. We enjoyed the rain. Very dry so far this year. We did see a few birds, not a great many. Not one flower. Nor sprig of green grass. We were there to early for them it seems. We saw and ID these birds: Western Blue Bird, Juniper Titmouse, Red-Shafted Flicker, Pinyon Jay, Audubon's Warbler, Bushtit, Broadtail Hummingbird, Chirping Sparrow, Western Scrub Jay and Mourning Dove. We would go again and plan to do so sometime. They had free firewood but it was too dry to allow burning, no fires allowed. I am not sure what the Hummingbirds were eating, except from our feeder, not from flowers. The campground had very clean valt toilets, many water outlets around the campground. A sign in the campground warned about bears, but did not have bear proof trash can, nor did not see any. A sign on the trail warned about rattlesnakes and mountain lions which had been in the area, also no sign of either. A very nicely maintained trail, I must add. Two thumbs up for Datil Wells Rec' Site and Campground, the vistas were very nice.

On Sun Mar 1 19:31:47 2009 Luke from ABQ said:
We stayed this weekend and had a wonderful time. This campground is very clean and well maintained. It looked like half of the sites are pull through so it make getting out pop up in and out of the site a snap. We had a covered picnic table which looked to be made of recycled rubber, fire pit with grill, a small pile of fire wood supplied by the campground, and separate standing cooking grill. There was only a few other campers, but it is still cold at night. The vaulted toilets were clean and there are multiple water faucets throughout the campground. I really enjoyed our stay there and would highly recommend it. The hiking trail is nice and peaceful too!

On Mon Sep 7 23:38:11 2009 Andy from Westminster, CO said:
I visited on Thursday, September 4th, 2009. The only other people there were the hosts and an RV. The RV was quiet and shut their generator off by 9pm. Thanks for being great neighbors!

Great big camp sites.

Clean. Quiet. Well taken care of.

Hosts are great, too. Friendly and helpful with lots of good info. Thanks for all the maps, M. The breakfast at the cafe hit the spot, too, H.

Nature trail is neat. Looking forward to actually doing the whole loop next time, not just a little ways in. Found Mountain Lion prints in the area.

A pack of Coyotes sung me a lullaby about 1:00am.

Great place to be. I'm brining the family next time!

On Mon Jun 28 16:31:35 2010 Roy from Abingdon, Maryland said:
I had heard that the night skies at Datil Well are very dark, among the darkest skies in the southwest, in fact.

Consequently, I arrived at the campground in April of 2009 with my 12.5" reflector. I was greeted by the manager, Mike, and, among the usual directions, he showed me a broad flat field where I could set up my scope and observe as much as I wanted to, without concern about lights.

The campground was so dark, I couldn't see ten feet in front of me. I stayed awake for the next three nights, observing until dawn. (I did sleep during the day, of course. This was easy to do, because the campground is so quiet.)

Conclusion: If you're an amateur astronomer looking for a dark sky site, do visit Datil Well.

On Mon May 16 20:42:05 2011 Philip Crider from Socorro, NM said:
My Dad, my family and I have enjoyed this campground for many years. It is generally uncrowded, and very peaceful. The well water is delicious, cold and refreshing. We also enjoy the Nature Trail, it is well maintained and very scenic. In the predawn light, sometimes you can see elk along the trail. This campground and Nature Trail is a wonderful place to relax and enjoy nature.

On Tue Sep 29 00:45:49 2015 Michele from Las Cruces New Mexico said:
Second visit to this campground. We found it very clean and quiet. The sites are nicely spaced apart from each other. Can't wait to return!

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