Las Petacas

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A wide spot with a stream in the Taos Canyon which has been turned into a campground. This campground is used by people as a place to spend the night, not as a place to spend time (when we spent the night here, most were gone a little after 8am). Part of this is probably due to the fact that this is the first campground you reach after you leave Taos.

If you are looking for a better campground, continue up the road to either Capulin or La Sombra

Campground data:

Controlling agency: Carson National Forest; Camino Real Ranger District
Official URL:Forest service campground web page
Region: North-central; Sangre de Cristo Mountains.
Between Taos and Angel Fire
CG elevation: 7401ft; 2256m
Campsite count: 9.
Visual density: 0.00. Visual density not recorded.
Fee: $5.00.
Season: May 28 to September 06. Actual season depends on budget and weather.
Dogs: Yes. on leash.
Horses: Unknown.
Handicapped accessible: Unknown.
RV max length: 16ft; 5m
RV parking surface: dirt
RV pull-through spaces? Unknown.
General RV notes: The forest service recommends no trailers. This advice is because there is limited area for turning around. Trailers must be less than 16 feet long.
Campground facilities: vault toilet(s), fire pit (Some have grates for cooking. Others are rings of stone.).
Campground attractions: fishing, stream (Rio Fernando).

When we visited it:

Date: 2000-08-10
Cleanliness: 7.
General notes: When we visited, the toilet had a broken door handle.


Waypoint Type Description
PETACACampgroundLas Petacas Campground


Paper maps:
Map name Cartographer Year Scale Topo map? Online access Notes
Carson National Forest US Forest Service 2002 1:126720 N from Amazon (purchase) Camino Real and Questa ranger districts and Valle Vidal Unit side of the map
Guide to Indian Country of Arizona Colorado New Mexico Utah Automobile Club of Southern California 1998 1:0 N from Amazon (purchase) Good overview road map for northwest NM. No scale is given on the map. The corner coordinates are approximate.
Taos BLM 1994 1:100000 Y from Amazon (purchase)
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 Taos, take US 64 towards Angel Fire. The campground will be on the south (right) side of the highway after you have gone five to ten miles.
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About the campground:

Our truck in site 6

The highway is right next to the campground, so road noise is a problem.

You enter the campground at the middle, and the turnaround space at either end is limited if the campground is full.

The photo shows our truck in site 6.

Site 9 looks like the nicest. To get to it, turn right when you enter the campground and go to the end. There is a nice tent location here.
campsite 9
The stream beside the campground
A small stream does run beside the campground.

Plants we saw around the campground:

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