Every so often, even with our new and improved plan of slowing our travels way down, we still end up with an overnight stay here and there. It’s just how things work out sometimes—and honestly, we don’t need to spend multiple days every place we go. But even when we’re landing somewhere for only a night, we try to find a location that offers something more than just a place to park our rig.
After a day of travel, it’s refreshing for body and spirit to have a beautiful view and a peaceful night’s sleep. A convenient hiking trail makes it all the better—otherwise, we’re walking circles around the campground trying to get in a bit of exercise after a day on the road. Lyman Lake State Park, in east central Arizona, was the perfect stop on our route north from Silver City, New Mexico.
At only 177 miles from Silver City, we had time for a last stroll through town (and were able to watch a few races of the Tour of the Gila) before heading out. We didn’t have high expectations for the campground—for some reason, a neighbor at our RV park in Silver City told us that Lyman Lake wasn’t anything special. Apparently his criteria are different than ours.
We arrived at Lyman Lake State Park to find a pretty little campground with spacious, immaculate sites, and gorgeous views of the lake. It was quiet, peaceful, and the night skies are wonderfully dark—with no big cities nearby, great swaths of stars are visible.
Best of all, there’s a wonderful hiking trail within walking distance of the campground. The trail wends along the lake and around picturesque rock formations, with hundreds of ancient petroglyphs pecked into the rocks. We’ve seen lots of petroglyphs in our travels, but it’s always a thrill to search for the rock art left behind by native peoples thousands of years ago, and to try to decipher the meaning of the ancient graffiti.
We hiked a couple of miles of trails in the late afternoon, and again in the morning before leaving. Should you be traveling this way, we highly recommend this sweet little campground and the hiking trails.
About the campground:
Lyman Lake State Park is situated on the shores of a 1500-acre reservoir at an elevation of 6,000 feet. The sites are lovely, each with an individual ramada for shade. Nice bathrooms and showers, terrible to nonexistent Verizon (no big deal for one night, right?). If you head to the day use area to hike the trail, you’ll have excellent Verizon coverage and all of your emails will arrive in one big deluge. Water/electric sites are $28, non-hookup sites are $20.
Next Up: A Stroll Through The Petrified Forest