Many state parks offer a world of adventurous activities in a challenging terrain and these kinds of destinations do tend to attract large crowds. Part of the reason for the popularity amounts to these exciting destinations being featured on the cover of travel literature far more often than anything else. On the flip-side, the comfortable state parks that offer a mellow laid back experience are usually mentioned in the back pages, because there is nothing flashy to draw attention. In this case, the lack of being in the limelight actually is a good thing, because for some people the ideal great escape just involves camping in the woods, doing some hiking or bird watching, then spending plenty of time goofing off in hammock under a shade tree. Avoiding a hectic schedule is what escaping from the rat race is all about and this is where the mellow destinations like Manzano Mountains State Park fit into the picture.
The Manzano Mountains New Mexico State Park is basically a fully developed campground in a deep pine forest setting. This park is located in the eastern Manzano Mountains and the lower elevation foothills are fairly easy to traverse, so this is definitely an easy going hiker's destination. In fact, hiking is the primary activity in this area, because no motorized off road vehicles or horseback riding is allowed. Seasonal birding and wildlife viewing is what this park is famous for, so be sure to pack binoculars or a telephoto camera for the trails.
The Manzano Mountains State Park Campground is fully developed with facilities, large RV vehicle slips and a dump station. This campground also offers picnic tables, bear safe food containers and fire/BBQ pits. Even fresh water is available, so all that a camper has to do is check in with the site host to get the venture underway. Reservations are recommended during the busy spring and summer seasons, which can easily be done at the State Park website.
Hiking, birding, wildlife viewing and goofing off under a shade tree may not sound like much, but this actually is the most popular outdoor venue of them all. For those who thrive more, the Salinas Pueblo Missions National Monument is nearby and the Manzano Mountains State Park Campground is a top choice for a basecamp. Just in case the State Park Campground is full, the Cibola National Forest Red Canyon Campground is literally right next door, so any overflow problem is covered. If rest, relaxation and an easy going camping experience is your cup of tea, then be sure to keep the eastern foothills of the Manzano Mountains in mind!
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