TAOS, NM – With the easing of public health and safety restrictions enacted by State of New Mexico health officials, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), today announced that the Taos Field Office is increasing recreational access to Santa Cruz Lake to day-use activities with limitations to accommodate health and safety, staffing levels and construction work. The BLM is working servicewide with Federal, state, and local public health authorities to closely monitor the COVID-19 pandemic and using a phased approach to increase access on a case-by-case basis.
Beginning June 26, 2020, Santa Cruz Lake will reopen with the following limitations:
- Day-use will be available Thursday through Sunday, from 6 a.m.- 9 p.m. Day-use will be closed Monday through Wednesday.
- Portable toilets will be available for use.
- Exact change is required and should be deposited into fee tubes; entrance station will not handle cash.
- $5 day-use fee or $20 for the Taos Field Office Annual Pass
Due to ongoing construction, the North Shore Campground will also remain closed. To remain safe, the BLM asks the public to refrain from entering this area until construction is complete.
The health and safety of our visitors, employees, volunteers, and partners continues to be paramount. At the Taos Field Office, our operational approach will be to examine each facility function and service provided to ensure those operations comply with current public health guidance, and to regularly monitor these. We continue to work closely with the Department of the Interior and follow CDC guidance to ensure public and employee spaces are safe and clean for visitors, employees, partners, and volunteers.
While these areas are accessible for visitors to enjoy, a return to full operations will continue to be phased, and services may be limited. When recreating, the public should follow the New Mexico Department of Health orders, practice Leave No Trace principles, practice social distancing and avoid high-risk outdoor activities.
The CDC has offered guidance to help people recreating on public lands prevent the spread of infectious diseases. We will continue to monitor all functions to ensure that visitors adhere to CDC guidance for mitigating risks associated with the transmission of COVID-19, and take any additional steps necessary to protect public health.
“Collaboration between our recreation, engineering and maintenance staff as well as fire crews is paramount to implementing our reopening process, but we rely on the public to respect the process, respect the resources and practice Leave No Trace principles to continue to move forward as quickly and as safely as possible,” said BLM Taos Assistant Field Manager Judy Culver.
Details and updates on operations will continue to be posted on our website https://www.blm.gov/