Guide to Fishing Near Red River, New Mexico

Red River is home to some of the best fishing in New Mexico thanks to its wide array of lakes and rivers. The trick is finding the best spot to fully enjoy Red River fishing, including opportunities for fly fishing. That's where this fishing guide comes in. Check out our top fishing spots, both lakes and rivers, near Red River to get a good idea of what fishing in New Mexico looks like.
New Mexico Fishing License
Before you can drop a line, you'll need a New Mexico fishing license. All those 12 and older must have a current fishing license. An extra stamp ($10) is required to fish in all U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management lands. There are various passes depending on age and residency but a one-day pass costs $12 while a five-day pass is $24. You can buy a pass online or you can buy one at Red River Angler and Sport, Sitzmark Sports, The Starr Corporation and Williams Trading Post.

Types of Fish
  • Kokanee Salmon
  • Sunfish
  • Northern Pike
  • Rainbow Trout
  • German Brown Trout
  • Brook Trout
  • Cutthroat Trout
  • Cutbow Trout
  • Smallmouth Bass
  • Channel Catfish

Fishing Spots
Red River:
There are various spots along the Red River you can drop in a line. This river is great for all anglers, including those who came in search of good fly fishing in New Mexico. In town, there are some great places along the river or at the town ponds near Lift House. Upper Red River features a lot of Brook and Rainbow trout while the lower portion --- near Questa --- offers a great chance for fishing near a fish hatchery.

Goose Lake: Goose Lake, New Mexico is about 8.5 miles southwest of Red River along Goose Lake Road. Four-wheel drive and a high-clearance vehicle are needed to traverse this route. Goose Lake is home to Rainbow and Cutthroat trout. Goose Lake features some crystal clear water, meaning you have to be on your A-game to catch one.

Eagle Nest Lake: Eagle Nest Lake, New Mexico is about 18 miles from Red River but offers a great fishing experience. Eagle Nest Lake is home to Kokanee Salmon as well as Rainbow Trout, Channel Catfish and Smallmouth Bass, among others. There are also some opportunities for ice fishing during the winter. Eagle Nest Lake fishing is a worthwhile experience.

Cimarron River: Cimarron River in New Mexico is an excellent spot for trout fishing. Set in the Cimarron Canyon just east of Red River, this river offers a great opportunity close to the Alpine Lodge.

Rio Grande
: The Rio Grande is farther from Red River, set west of Questa, but the experience is well worth it. The river offers a great chance for trout fishing in New Mexico thanks to a stock of rainbow, brown and cutbow trout as well as some pike. The Rio Grande is a great place for New Mexico fly fishing, especially in the fall.

While this is by no means an extensive list, it should provide you a great opportunity to enjoy fishing in New Mexico and Red River. Other popular places include Middlefork, Latir and Lost lakes. You can stop off at Fagan's Guided Fly Fishing, Red River Angler and Sport, Starr Trading Post and Angler Fly Shop or Williams Outdoor Store and Hardware to get some supplies or learn of other spots to get a proper New Mexico fishing experience.