Sugarite Canyon State Park, Raton
Categories: State Parks, Nature & Parks
Sugarite Canyon State Park is a state park of New Mexico, United States, featuring a historic early-20th Century coal-mining camp and natural scenery at the border of the Rocky Mountains and the Great Plains. The park is located on the Colorado–New Mexico state line 6mi northeast of Raton, New Mexico.SettingSugarite Canyon is located east of Raton Pass in a sparsely-populated region of lofty, steep-sided, flat-topped mesas; cone-shaped volcanoes; and old lava flows. Sugarite Canyon State Park, 3600acres in size, consists of a stream valley flanked by basalt cliffs with Bartlett and Little Horse Mesas to the west and Horse Mesa on the east. Elevations in the park are from 6950ft at the park entrance to 8350ft on top of Little Horse Mesa. The park is about 4mi long and 1.5mi wide.Most of the park is heavily forested with ponderosa pine and gambel oak forests. Along Chicorica Creek at lower elevations is a riparian forest of willow and cottonwood. Douglas fir, white fir, and aspen forests are found at higher elevations on north facing slopes. The flat top of Little Horse Mesa is a grassy meadow. Wildlife species in the park include mule deer, black bear, mountain lion, turkeys, and elk. The two artificial lakes in the park, Lake Maloya (120 acres) and Lake Alice (3 acres), and Chicorica Creek, are stocked with rainbow, cutthroat, and brown trout. Abundant butterflies, wildflowers, and views down the Sugarite Valley to the Great Plains far below are highlights of the park.Make Sugarite Canyon State Park part of your personalized Raton itinerary using our Raton trip generator.
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Beautiful fall color made for a very pleasant afternoon drive. Made me wish I had my camping gear along.
The first hike was up the mountain to look at the old coal mining historical sites. The second was in a 10 mile hike up and down the mountains amazing views, on top of the Mesa, views of lakes. The pa... read more »
We stayed in the Park, at the campground accross from Lake Alice. Given it's location it's not a bad area. The campsite and 5th wheel access are very tight, but there are no wide open spaces around, s... read more »
This place provides bear boxes for you to put your food and toiletries into. Bring bear spray just in case, stay bear aware. There were nice grilling and fire facilities but they had a park wide burn ban in effect, and I am thinking it was due to a large fire they had a few years ago. Make sure you bring propane grilling equipment and check local burn bans. The bathrooms were very well kept. The water was under a boil advisory whilst we were there which complicated things further but the site is beautiful and nice and dark.
My husband, my dog, and I took a road trip to Yellowstone NP in May of 2015. We tent camped along the way at various state parks and Sugarite Canyon SP was my favorite! The man at the visitor's center was very nice and helpful. He gave us a lot of interesting information about the park and he made excellent suggestions for where to camp (Soda Pocket campground) and for where to see wildlife and beautiful scenery within the park. When I told him I was a birder, he also told me where I could see some interesting birds and he even put out extra birdseed at the feeder in front of the office for me. I got several life birds just at the seed feeder and the hummingbird feeder since I'm from the Southeast and most of the birds I saw were Western species! The Soda Pocket campground was very well maintained and had beautiful views. There are also a few short hiking trails at the campground where I saw mule deer and wild turkeys. The camp hosts were very nice and helpful as well! I hope we can return to Sugarite Canyon SP one day.
Beautiful place, nice hike trail to the old mine.
Its okay. Pretty but very generic. Like most NM campgrounds booked with permanent residents it seems. Friendly staff and overflow camping available... The back campground is really just too steep to get to, although people do it. I'm not. Long trails and quiet. But generic.
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