Two Ruidoso Lakes You Might Not Know About

Summer scenic, Alto Lake, Ruidoso, NM

Summer scenic, Alto Lake, Ruidoso, NM

Winter scenic, Grindstone Lake, Ruidoso, NM

Winter scenic, Grindstone Lake, Ruidoso, NM

Bring a picnic, cast for fish, paddle a boat, cycle, horseback ride, or explore on foot via multi-use trails at two cool, clear alpine reservoirs in Ruidoso that will keep you coming back.

Both Alto and Grindstone lakes are regularly stocked with rainbow trout, and on occasion catfish and smallmouth bass and year round fishing (sunrise to sunset) is permitted at both lakes with the proper licensing.

Keep a camera handy for wildlife sightings as the lake areas are home to black bear, deer, elk, blue heron, osprey, and bald or golden eagles. A viewing platform at Grindstone Lake has been dedicated to viewing these wondrous birds and their acrobatic feeding routine.

Non-motorized boating is allowed from April 1 to Oct 31. A permit is required and is available from the Ruidoso Parks and Recreation office.

Mountain bikers, hikers and horseback riders all utilize the miles of scenic, multi-use trails that circle both lakes. Please be courteous in interactions with fellow trail users.

Check out the TripAdvisor reviews of Grindstone Lake here.

General Rules:
Swimming is permitted at Grindstone Lake only. No swimming allowed at Alto Lake.
No fees for parking, entrance, or picnicking.
Pets must be on a leash.
A state of New Mexico fishing license for those 12 years and older is required.

Boat Permits:
One day $15
Three day $25
Season April 1st – October 31st $50
Permits can be purchased Monday thru Friday 8:30 am to 4:30 pm from Ruidoso Department of Parks and Recreation located at 535 Resort Drive.