Grindstone Lake and Trail system

111 Wiggins Way, off Resort Drive

This multi-use trail system, designed by the International Mountain Biking Association, was completed in 2014. Consisting of 5 trails totaling 18-miles, the trails are open to mountain biking, hiking and horseback riding. Please be courteous in interactions with fellow trail users.

Parking is available at Grindstone Lake. New public restrooms are available. Cell phones should work on the trail. Pets on leashes are allowed.

The lake is regularly stocked with rainbow trout, and on occasion catfish and smallmouth bass. Anglers love this lake due to the fact that it is one of two public waters in the area in which you can put a non-motorized boat. Due to it being one of few lakes in the region, the shoreline can get fished pretty heavily especially around holiday weekends. You can escape the crowds by hopping in your watercraft and getting to the honey holes.

Boating is allowed year-round (see Use of Vessels on Lake below for what is allowed). A permit is required and is available for purchase at the lake or by calling Parks & Rec at 575-257-5030.

Grindstone Lake is frequented by various wildlife such as black bears, mule deer, elk, blue heron, Osprey’s, and the occasional Bald or Golden Eagle. The most common of the visitors is the Osprey which can be seen diving into the lake in the spring or fall on their migration across the country. A viewing area has been dedicated to viewing these wondrous birds and their acrobatic feeding routine.

Grindstone Lake is home to a 27 hole, 81 par heavily wooded disc golf course, home to the annual New Mexico Disc Golf Championships. 

Head to the water for a day of fishing, kayaking, canoeing, paddle boarding, and more with watercraft equipment rentals at Grindstone Lake.

Learn more about Grindstone Lake at the official Ruidoso tourism website,

Check out the TripAdvisor reviews of Grindstone Lake here.

Featured Grindstone Lake News & Information

Grindstone Disc Golf Course, Ruidiso, NM

Grindstone Disc Golf Course, Ruidiso, NM

No fees for parking, entrance, or picnicking.
Pets must be on a leash.
A state of New Mexico fishing license for those 12 years and older is required.

Shore Fishing Hours:  5:00 am to 11:00 p.m.

Vessel Fishing Hours:  Dawn to Dusk

Boat Permits:
One day $15
Three day $25
Annual (valid for 12 months from date of purchase) $50
Permits can be purchased online, or Monday thru Friday 8:30 am to 4:30 pm at the Parks & Rec office located at 535 Resort Drive, Ruidoso, NM.

Use of vessels on lake.

  1. "Vessel" defined. As used in this article, the term "vessel" means and includes boats, hand-propelled boats, sailboats, paddle boats, and every description of watercraft used or capable of being used as a means of transportation on water.

  2. “Electric Trolling Motor” Must be a self-contained unit that includes an electric motor, 12 Volt marine battery, propeller and controls, and is affixed to an angler's boat, either at the bow or stern.

  3. “No Wake” Means moving at the slowest speed possible while still maintaining steerage and less than 5 miles per hour.

  4. Prohibited areas. No vessel shall be used or operated on Alto or Grindstone Lake in the areas fenced or buoyed around the water intake structures and water diversion entry points.

  5. Operation and safety standards; boating permit. No vessel shall be used or operated on Village of Ruidoso Lakes except in accordance with the following requirements:

  6. Motorized vessels with electric trolling motors restricted to no wake speed, may be used on Grindstone Lake. Only non-motorized boats will be allowed on Alto Lake.  Vessels which exceed 19 feet in length may not be used on Alto or Grindstone Lake

  7. No person shall use any vessel on Alto or Grindstone Lake in a careless or reckless manner or so as to interfere with the reasonable use or enjoyment of the lake by any other person.

  8.  No vessel may be used on Alto or Grindstone Lake unless the user has obtained a boating permit from the Village Parks and Recreation Department. The boating permit may be obtained by: Completing an application & paying the applicable fee for an annual permit, one-day permit or three-day permit.

  9. Every vessel shall have such permits, licenses and titles as required in NMSA 1978, § 66-12-1 et seq., the New Mexico Boat Act.

  10. Every vessel shall be equipped as required by the New Mexico Boat Act.

  11. Each occupant of any vessel on the lake is required to wear, at all times, a personal flotation device of a type approved by the U.S. Coast Guard.

  12.  Every vessel shall, at all times, observe the rules of the road established by the United States Coast Guard for inland waters, in addition to laws of the state and local ordinances and regulations.

  13. Recreational swimming and diving from any vessel is prohibited.

  14. No person under the age of 16 years shall operate a vessel upon the lake except with the authorization of a guardian. The operator of a vessel being used for recreational purposes shall require a child age twelve or under who is aboard the vessel to wear a personal flotation device approved by the United States coast guard as required in NMSA 1978, § 66-12-1 et seq., the New Mexico Boat Act.

  15. No vessel shall be operated on the lake during an electrical storm.

  16. Vessel operation, other than in the designated areas, is prohibited.

  17. The owner or operator of each vessel assumes all risks of the operation of the vessel. The owner or operator of the vessel assumes all civil liability for operating the vessel on Alto or Grindstone Lake.

  18. Vessels may be used on the lake from sunrise to sundown.

  19. All vessels shall be prepared for loading or unloading in the designated parking/loading areas only

  20.  All vessels must be transported by hand from the designated parking/loading areas to the lake.

Sec. 62-32. - Fishing

(a) Fishing shall be permitted at Alto or Grindstone Lake with the proper license and in compliance with appropriate state law.

(b) Fishing will be allowed from sunrise to sundown from vessels which are lawfully operated on the lake, and from 5:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. from the shore.

(c) Fishing shall not be permitted on Alto or Grindstone Lake in the areas fenced or buoyed around the water intake structure and the water diversion entry point.

Sec. 62-33. - Swimming or wading; dogs.

  1. Swimming shall be permitted at Alto or Grindstone Lake from the Friday before Memorial Day through Labor Day, sunrise to sundown. Swimming shall be at the swimmer's own risk.

  2. Children age twelve or under must wear a personal flotation device approved by the United States coast guard as required in NMSA 1978, § 66-12-1 et seq., the New Mexico Boat Act.

  3. Swimming shall not be permitteed in Girndstone lake in the areas fenced or buoyed.

  4. Dogs are allowed in the water and leash laws shall remain in effect for the surrounding areas at Grindstone Lake.


- Concessionaires.

All concessionaire operations at Alto or Grindstone Lake, approved by contract with the Village of Ruidoso, shall be exempt from licensing regulations, unless otherwise provided by contract.



Other Ruidoso Parks 

Ruidoso Municipal Swimming Pool

School House Park

Two Rivers Park

White Mountain Sports Complex

Wingfield Park

North Park

Hiking & Biking Trails  

Ruidoso Dog Park