FIRST FULL DAY AT LAKE SUMNER STATE PARK, NM APRIL 16, 2017

lake sumner bass 2017 apr 16

Location: Pecos Campground, Sumner Lake State Park, New Mexico.  Sumner Lake State Park Map (pdf).

Easter Sunday

I was up at dawn.  Blamed it on the dogs, but I wanted to get line in the water.  My first cast had a young largemouth bass chase the lure to the bank.  In a little while I’d caught it.  We’d go hungry if we had to depend upon my rusty fishing talents.  This one was released to get big. Here’s some fishing tips for Lake Sumner.

Fishing was tough.  Too deep, and I’d hang up.  The boaters definitely have the advantage at this lake.  A fella waiting for his partner to bring down the trailer, cranked in two large walleyes right outside the no-wake buoys.  I felt like slappin’ him.

A bit later I almost lost my mind when a huge fish cruised onto a shallow shelf above a boulder before it returned to deeper water.  I thrashed the water like an amateur.  Buck fever.

We had no more fishing luck.  Whew!  It’s hot standing on big white boulders.  Should I have slathered on sun block?   Yep.

lake sumner dam release 2017 apr 16Let’s go sight seeing.  We tossed our fishing stuff in the back and drove to below the dam on Westside River Road.  Water was being released and there was a good flow going.  Impressive sound as it ricocheted off the cliff to the left of the spillway. We called it Westside, but that would mean the other side was Eastside and it’s not.  Eastside is actually on the opposite side of the lake from the Visitor’s Center.

lake sumner westside cg water 2017 apr 16Look, trees and ergo, shade for the campsites.  Still hot in the sun.  Lots of people here.  Fishing only.  No swimming.  No wading.  No tubing.  No wading for fly fishing.  Vault toilets.  No water or electricity.

sumner lake map 2017 apr 22We go back up over the dam and drop down to the east campground opposite the west bank.  Together they are called Alamito Picnic Area on Google Maps.  But their real names are Shady Side Campground on the west and Racoon Campground on the right.  Vault toilet, picnic tables with fire rings. No electricity or water.  Still it was nice.  Lots of warnings about mountain lions.  Why hunt deer when you can eat soft city dog.  Lots of brush and trees so they can sneak up real close to the camps.

We then drove farther east to Eastside Campground Road to Eastside Campground.  It has the best views of the lake.  The sites with covered shelters have electricity and water.  The sun shelters have a shared water spigot in the vicinity.  Further north there are lots of places to pull next to the water.  Just pull over and camp.  Lots of people here too.

lake sumner barn swallow 2017 apr 18A quick rest and time to start burning down wood into coals for steaks.  Margo’s job and she did it very, very well.  We ate while watching little barn swallows buzzing around everywhere.  This one decided to check us out.  They also flew through the look out holes of the covered shelter.

Another wonderful tiring day.  A poor night’s sleep due to sunburn on my way too white legs.

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