Open Gate Program

The Open Gate program from New Mexico Game and Fish offers private land hunting and fishing access.
Leasing Private Lands and Improving Public Access. Click the tabs below to learn more about the Open Gate program.

The Open Gate Program

A previously-locked gate no allows public access to more hunting and fishing opportunities via Open Gate private lands, New Mexico Department of Game and Fish.

Open Gate is a program that leases private lands to improve public access for hunting, fishing, and trapping. Landowners voluntarily allow public access to their private parcel for specific outdoor activities. Participating landowners may also provide right-of-way access to public lands with limited access. Open Gate additionally works with cooperating State and Federal agencies to develop access in areas where needed. Properly-licensed sportspersons may access Open Gate properties during established season dates and times at no charge. Open Gate leases are funded exclusively by hunters, anglers, and trappers through the purchase of the Habitat Management and Access Validation (HMAV).

New Mexico hunter access to private land through the Department of Game and Fish program Open Gate

Hunters, Anglers, and Trappers

Please visit the Property Access tab for information on accessing and using Open Gate properties.

Visit the Property Locator tab for an interactive map showing available Open Gate properties with links to property details and permitted activities.

Let us know about your Open Gate experience by visiting the Rate a Property tab.

Landowners

Private landowners receive access payments, limited liability protection, and other benefits in exchange for signing a flexible hunting, fishing, or trapping lease through Open Gate. Participating landowners also help enrich New Mexico’s outdoor heritage by opening their gates to public access. If you are a private landowner interested in Open Gate, please visit the Landowners tab.

For more information call the NMDGF Information Center at (888) 248-6866.

Accessing and Using Open Gate Properties

Open Gate properties are private lands leased by NMDGF to improve public access for hunting, fishing, and trapping. Open Gate properties are also select access developments on cooperating State and Federal lands. The program benefits sportspersons by:

  • Allowing direct public access to quality private parcels for hunting, fishing, or trapping
  • Providing right-of-way access to exceptional public lands with limited access

Properly-licensed sportspersons may access Open Gate properties during established season dates and times. Open Gate gives back to the sporting community by using a portion of the proceeds from the Habitat Management and Access Validation (HMAV) to improve access for the hunters, anglers, and trappers who purchase this validation. Therefore, no additional charge or permit is required to hunt, fish, or trap on an Open Gate property. Landowner permission is not required to enter Open Gate properties. The entrance to all participating properties will be marked with a sign similar to the illustration below. Open Gate properties are not open for target practice, camping, or non-permitted activities. Visit the Property Locator tab for an interactive map showing available Open Gate properties with links to property details and permitted activities.

Duck hunting in blind - more opportunities with Open Gate public access to private land property, New Mexico Game and Fish

 

Angler in a northern stream - more opportunities with Open Gate public access to private land property, New Mexico Game and Fish

Private land hunting and fishing property access sign. The Open Gate program from New Mexico Department of Game and Fish.

Open Gate properties are only available to licensed hunters, anglers and trappers as long as we treat them with respect and keep them clean. Landowner participation is voluntary. Please adhere to all property-specific rules and the following when using Open Gate properties:

• Be a respectful and courteous guest
• Practice ethical hunting, fishing, and trapping
• Leave all gates as you found them
• Don’t block gates or roads with parked vehicles
• Don’t shoot towards livestock, buildings, or equipment
• Don’t hunt, fish, or trap in Safety Zones
• Pick up all trash – including shotgun shells
• Clean up after others who may leave trash behind
• A simple “thank-you” to a landowner goes a long way

Have you already visited an Open Gate property? Let us know about your Open Gate experience by visiting the Rate a Property tab.

Locating an Open Gate Property

Interactive hunting map helps hunters, anglers, and trappers find suitable Open Gate private land property in New Mexico. (Department of Game and Fish)The interactive map (below) is designed to help hunters, anglers, and trappers find suitable Open Gate properties. Click on a property outlined in red to display a pop-up window of basic information, permitted activities, and clickable links for further details including directions. (Supported browsers include Chrome, Firefox, Safari 3+, Internet Explorer 8+).

Click to reload map below if  borders or tools are missing, or view mobile map in a new browser window.

Click to reload map above if  borders or tools are missing, or view mobile map in a new browser window.

Map Key

maps-land-icons-og Open Gate borders
Click on a property to display a pop-up window of basic information, permitted activities, and clickable links to details and directions.

maps-land-icons-gmu Game Management Unit (GMU) borders
Click to display GMU details and links to hunting and licensing information.

maps-land-icons-blm Bureau of Land Management (BLM)
maps-land-icons-nps National Park Service (NPS)
maps-land-icons-usfs US Forest Service (USFS)
maps-land-icons-usfw US Fish and Wildlife (USFW)
maps-land-icons-usbr Bureau of Reclamation (USBR)
maps-land-icons-bia Tribal
maps-land-icons-fed Other Federal
maps-land-icons-state State
maps-land-icons-local State Parks
maps-land-icons-dod Department of Defense

Map Tools

maps-interactive-icons-pan Pan (click and drag the map)
maps-interactive-icons-zoom Zoom in
maps-interactive-icons-zoom-out Zoom out
maps-interactive-icons-home Zoom to New Mexico
maps-interactive-icons-zoom-current Zoom to your current location

maps-interactive-icons-basemap Basemap Style Gallery
maps-interactive-icons-layers Map Visible Layer List
maps-interactive-icons-info Info (Map Tools)
maps-interactive-icons-filter Query Tool
The Query Tool selects Open Gate properties based on activities and areas of interest. Click the icon and select a question from the list. If prompted, enter relevant information into the search box. Click maps-land-icons-apply at the bottom of the box to display a list of properties matching your criteria. The selected properties will also be displayed in purple with a blue outline on the map.

For more information call the NMDGF Information Center at (888) 248-6866.

Private Lands and New Mexico’s Outdoor Heritage

The New Mexico Department of Game and Fish has long recognized the important role private lands play in promoting New Mexico’s outdoor heritage. Private landowners promote New Mexico’s outdoor heritage by opening their gates and providing quality outdoor recreation opportunities for hunters, anglers, and trappers. Proper management of private lands also protects our fish and wildlife resources ensuring they can be enjoyed by current and future generations.

Open Gate Program

Open Gate is a voluntary leasing program that provides incentives to private landowners who open their property to improve public access for hunting, fishing, and trapping. Private landowners receive access payments, limited liability protection, and other benefits in exchange for signing a flexible hunting, fishing, or trapping lease.

Private landowners may participate in Open Gate in two ways:

  • Allow public access to a private parcel for hunting, fishing, or trapping
  • Provide right-of-way access to exceptional public lands with limited access

Participating landowners may also receive technical guidance and funding to help manage fish and wildlife habitats to improve future hunting, fishing, and trapping opportunities.

New Mexico Department of Game and Fish Conservation Officer checks for a license. (Open Gate private land hunts).

Youth with harvested white-tailed deer. New Mexico Department of Game and Fish, Open Gate private land hunts.

Benefits and Requirements

Access payments are based on various criteria including a property’s location, acreage, type of wildlife habitat (based on computer analysis), and hunting or fishing opportunities permitted. Click the link below to view current access rates. Be aware that all rates are subject to change without notice.

Icon of Open Gate Access Rates (Updated 12-06-2016) Open Gate Access Rates (Updated 12-06-2016)

State law provides limited liability protection to landowners and lessees participating in Open Gate under the terms of Icon of Statute 17-4-7 NMSA 1978 Statute 17-4-7 NMSA 1978 . All properties are posted with rule and guidance signs to manage public access. Vehicle travel is restricted to designated roads only; off-road travel is only allowed on foot when permitted. Open Gate properties are closed to camping. NMDGF Conservation Officers also include Open Gate properties in their regular patrols to help ensure that public hunters, anglers, and trappers comply with property rules and state regulations.

Providing Public Access for Hunting, Fishing, Trapping

Private landowners will have flexibility to determine permitted activities, legal species, and access dates when allowing direct public access to their property. Landowners may enroll some or all of their property. There is no minimum or maximum number of acres that may be enrolled. However, lands or waters eligible for enrollment in Open Gate must be capable of supporting a hunting or fishing lease. Once enrolled, participating landowners are also eligible to receive technical guidance, additional funding, and cost-share assistance for projects that improve habitat and hunting, fishing, and trapping opportunities on their property.

Providing Right-of-Way Access to Public Lands

Participants providing right-of-way access to public lands will be able to work with NMDGF to determine roadways and access points that mutually meet the needs of the private landowner and public sportspersons. Applicable public lands include State Trust and Federal lands that provide excellent hunting, fishing, or trapping opportunities. Participating landowners are not required to hold a government lease on the public lands to which access will be improved. There is no minimum or maximum right-of-way length.

Open Gate Brochure and Application

Open Gate private land Hunting and Fishing Access Program Brochure, Incentives for Landowners to provide Public Access. (New Mexico Department of Game and Fish)

Leases and Application Process

Apply Here! Icon of Open Gate Application Fillable-Form Open Gate Application Fillable-Form

Does your property provide quality hunting, fishing, or trapping opportunities? Can you help improve access to public land with restricted access? The New Mexico Department of Game and Fish is accepting applications for the Open Gate program.

Open Gate Access Agreements (leases) generally last one year; however, longer-term leases may be available. Landowners can withdraw from a lease at any time, but payments may be prorated.

If you are interested in Open Gate participation, please submit a completed application. Applicants must also provide:

  • A copy of the recorded property deed(s)
  • The legal description for the property including acreage (from property tax records or deed)
  • A legible map showing the property boundary. Consider a 1:100,000 scale BLM land status map (easily obtained from BLM offices), USGS map, or an aerial photo map (from Google Maps, etc.).
  • If a lessee wishes to enroll a property in Open Gate, a copy of the existing lease with a notarized and signed statement from the landowner authorizing Open Gate participation is required.

All properties are subject to evaluation by NMDGF to determine if the lands or waters qualify for enrollment. Once your application is received, a representative from NMDGF will contact and work with you to complete the review process. Leases are offered to qualifying landowners annually until all available funds for the current year are expended.

Open Gate leases are funded exclusively by hunters, anglers, and trappers through their purchase of the Habitat Management and Access Validation (HMAV).

For more information call the Open Gate Program Coordinator at (505) 476-8043 or the NMDGF Information Center at (888) 248-6866.

Rate a Property

Successful turkey harvest on private land near Tucumcari, made possible through Open Gate land lea

Relax and fish on Open Gate properties leased by New Mexico Game and Fish
Let NMDGF know about your Open Gate experience. Please take a moment to anonymously rate the Open Gate properties that you have used. Open Gate depends on voluntary feedback from hunters, anglers, and trappers to ensure that each property is providing an enjoyable outdoor experience. We know your experience can differ each time you go afield, so be sure to provide a separate rating each time you visit an Open Gate property.

Simply click the Rate link next to the appropriate property below. You will see a short online survey that allows you to provide feedback. Additional instructions are provided on the survey form.

Unsure which property in the list below you visited? Simply visit the Property Locator tab.

We appreciate your assistance!

OG IDProperty NameNearest CityCountyGMURate Property
OG.109Fort Sumner, NMDeBaca32Rate OG.109
OG.111Tucumcari, NMQuay42Rate OG.111
OG.117San Jon, NMQuay40Rate OG.117
OG.119Deming, NMLuna21BRate OG.119
OG.120Hachita, NMHidalgo/Grant26Rate OG.120
OG.121Roswell, NMChaves33Rate OG.121
OG.122Roswell, NMChaves33Rate OG.122
OG.125LCpl Steven Chavez Fishing AreaHondo, NMLincoln36Rate OG.125
OG.126Tucumcari, NMQuay42Rate OG.126
OG.127Monastery LakePecos, NMSan Miguel45Rate OG.127
OG.128Bonito LakeRuidoso, NMLincoln36Temporarily Closed
OG.132Moriarty, NMSanta Fe8/43Rate OG.132
OG.133San Antonio, NMSocorro18Rate OG.133
OG.134Fort Sumner, NMDeBaca40Rate OG.134
OG.137Roswell, NMChaves33Rate OG.137
OG.138Roswell, NMChaves33Rate OG.138
OG.140Casa Colorada, NMValencia14Rate OG.140
OG.141Winston, NMSocorro17Rate OG.141
OG.143Hagerman, NMChaves33Rate OG.143
OG.144Picacho, NMChaves32Rate OG.144
OG.145Mayhill, NMOtero34Rate OG.145
OG.146Roswell, NMChaves32/33Rate OG.146
OG.147Stubblefield and Laguna Madre LakesMaxwell, NMColfax55BRate OG.147
OG.148Socorro, NMSocorro18Rate OG.148
OG.151Morphy LakeMora, NMMora46Rate OG.151
OG.152Rio CostillaAmalia, NMTaos55ARate OG.152
OG.153Greenwood AreaUte Park, NMColfax55ARate OG.153
OG.FS886Royal John Mine BypassFaywood, NMGrant24Rate OG.FS886

For more information call the NMDGF Information Center at (888) 248-6866.