Eagle Nest

So-called, ‘last best place in the Rockies!’

You want nature? Spiritual uplifts, ancient wonders and landscape bliss? Eagle Nest has it all. This is where the Rocky Mountains meet the great plains of the Southwest. This, too, is where echoes of gunslinging, gold mining and great grand herds of bison ricochet off canyon walls. 

Courtesy Eagle Nest Chamber

For real, though, you’ll find buffalo, pronghorn, deer and elk, alpine tundra, extinct volcanoes and fishing! At press time, coronavirus safety practices and fire restrictions are still in place for national and state parks, with a soft reopening for dine-in restaurants.

Eagle Nest Lake State Park is regularly stocked with trout and salmon. Anglers can fish from the banks or by boat. Boat docks are scheduled to be installed May 6, 2021.

Nashville music fest

Besides fishing fun, Nashville To New Mexico may happen this year. Bill Dawson’s 6th Annual Songwriters Country Music Festival was cancelled in 2020, but may still happen.

Courtesy photos

Dawson brings Nashville and New Mexico together for a high energy evening of acoustic music in Eagle Nest Village. Usually, a host of activities take place throughout the day. Dawson is often joined by musicians Aaron Barker, Trent Wilson and Lainey Edwards, among many more.

Every year Dawson is a celebrity golfer for the Pat and Emmitt Smith charities golf tournament, he is on the Red River Rivals OU celebrity softball team (team Toby Keith & Bob Stoops) and battles against University of Texas (team Matthew McConaughey & Roger Clemens) to raise money for Matthew’s, Toby’s and Roger’s charities. For information, go to nashvilletonewmexico.com.

Be sure to investigate all Eagle Nest has to offer, because so much is available for enjoyment within coronavirus safety practices. For updates, check Eagle Nest Visitor Center and Gateway Museum at (505) 721-0704, see visiteaglenest.org or call the village of Eagle Nest at 575-377-2486.

July Fourth fireworks

Eagle Nest’s town-wide events usually include one of New Mexico’s largest and most spectacular July Fourth fireworks displays over the lake. To see if it is still on, check with the Eagle Nest Visitor Center at visiteaglenest.org.

Courtesy photo

Whether they have the fireworks display at dusk this year or not, at press time they are still planning the July Fourth fire department barbecue and EMS dessert sale, a socially distanced July Fourth parade and maybe the One Night to Unite event, 5-8 p.m. at Enchanted Eagle Park – all the events and venues are subject to change, of course. Check Eagle Nest Visitor Center, below.

Arts and fish fests

The High Country Arts Festival may happen in July; and everyone hopes for the annual September fishing derby – Eagle Nest Fish Fest – featuring cash and door prizes for tagged fish, casting contests, worm-eating contests and more.

Originally named Therma, the village adopted the name Eagle Nest after the completion of the Eagle Nest Lake dam, which recently celebrated its 100-year anniversary in 2018. Though the state’s museums were temporarily closed at press time, restrictions may have been lifted by the time you read this. In Eagle Nest, the Enchanted Circle Gateway Museum, at 580 East Therma Drive, features culture and history exhibits, facilitates tours of historic places and serves as the official visitor center.