9 Best Sailing Lakes in New Mexico

The primary image that strikes the mind of an individual when they come across the name of New Mexico is that of tumbleweeds and the scorching deserts. But numerous lakes and reservoirs in the southwestern regions of the state work significantly to balance them out. Not only these water bodies are beautifully crafted among the scenic natural beauties, but also promote numerous water-based recreation activities in these lakes and reservoirs. That attracts a lot of visitors to the place from all across the globe. The best lakes for engaging in sailing recreational sports include:

1. Navajo Lake

If you are in search of the best boating lakes in New Mexico, this is an option that will be most appropriate for you to try. Apart from boating, this lake also offers a wide range of other recreational activities such as skiing (both water and jet), scuba diving, cruise and houseboats, kayaking, windsurfing, and canoeing. Fishing is also a popular activity in this region.

2. Conchas Lake

This lake is located in the central portion of the New Mexico State that feeds on the Canadian River. With a shoreline of over 85 miles at a stretch, the Conchas Lake attracts a lot of water sports enthusiasts from all around the state. Currently, it houses eight ramps for boat launch with a marina service and numerous campsites by the lake. Paddle boating and water skiing are two of the most popular activities in the region among the visitors.

3. Storrie Lake

The Storrie Lake stretches over an area of roughly 1100 acres in the northwest direction from Las Vegas. It offers a stunning view of the famous Hermit Peak and the wilderness of the Pecos. With one dock and a single boat ramp, it is a popular destination for sailing, waterskiing, cruising, and windsurfing. Campers crowd this place most of the time.

4. El Vado Lake

If you want to enjoy a wonderful camping experience, you must visit the El Vado Lake at least once. It is one of the best boating lakes in New Mexico that also offers skiing and other recreational activities. Though there is no marina or craft rental service in the area, there are a couple of boat launch ramps and a couple of docks that provide access to the lake to the enthusiasts for no-wake boating. Fishing on the lake or the mouth of the Chama River is another popular choice to look into in this place.

5. Cochiti Lake

It takes hardly 45 minutes to reach the Cochiti Lake from Albuquerque, and if you are coming from Santa Fe, it takes a maximum time of 30 minutes. The main recreational activities offered in the lake include no-wake boating, fishing, swimming, and windsurfing. Visitors often opt for hiking in the park that surrounds the lake.

6. Santa Rosa Lake

Among the wide range of lakes prevalent in the Santa Rosa town, the Santa Rosa Lake is the most popular destination among visitors, especially for the wide range of recreation activities that they can enjoy. It ranges from waterskiing, fishing, paddle boarding and swimming for those who want to enjoy the waters and many hiking and bird watching options for the land lovers.

7. Elephant Butte Lake

It is the largest lake in the state of New Mexico that stretches over a length of 40 miles to support the Rio Grande Dam. With three marinas operating in full service, it is one of the best boating lakes in New Mexico that offers other recreational options as well. Tent camping, paddle boating, canoeing, bird watching, and fishing are some of the most popular activities in the area.

8. Caballo Lake

This reservoir is just a short drive away from the Elephant Butte. It homes two ramps for launching boats and three public docks but currently has no marina operating in the area. Paddle boating is one of the most popular choices especially in the upper parts of the lake. Wildlife and bird watching contribute to the other popular activities in the place.

9. Abiquiu Lake

This lake is controlled by the USACE (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers) that is quite famous for its boating features. Fishing, waterskiing, and swimming are some of the top options for recreational activities in the area. The lake has no active facilities of the marina but has a couple of ramps for boat launches.


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