Home | Getting Started | Gift Center | Gear Store | Topo Maps | My Wildernet | Newsletter Signup
Colorado > Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park
Activity Locator:

Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

Activities within Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park:

All Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park Outdoor Recreation Activities

Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park
   Customized Topo Maps and Aerial Photos
Outdoor Gear and Clothing

Search by Name within Colorado:

Trip Planner

Hotels Airline Tickets Car Rentals
B&Bs Yellow Pages City Guide

General Information

Description - The Black Canyon of the Gunnison's unique and spectacular landscape was formed slowly by the action of water and rock scouring down through hard Proterozoic crystalline rock. No other canyon in North America combines the narrow opening, sheer walls, and startling depths offered by the Black Canyon of the Gunnison.

The South Rim is open every day, with limited access in winter. The North Rim is open every day, but North Rim Road and the ranger station are closed in winter.

Attractions - Prepare yourself for 2,000 ft, narrow canyon walls dropping almost vertically to the Gunnison River. Many of the overlooks are easily accessed by car and very short walks. Interpretive programs are offered all summer. Evening programs are presented at the South Rim campground on summer weekends.

The park offers two campgrounds, one on the north rim and one on the south rim. The campgrounds are open from April to October. The North Rim campground offers 13 sites in Pinyon-Juniper forest, water available, no hook-ups. The South Rim campground has 88 sites in Pinyon-Juniper forest. It offers vault toilets, limited water, and 30 amp electrical hookups in Loop B only.

The park visitor center is located two miles from the south rim entrance station on the South Rim Drive. The visitor center includes a digital video theater with two orientation programs.

Recreation - Black Canyon of the Gunnison offers outstanding opportunities for camping, viewing scenery, hiking, backpacking, scenic driving, viewing scenery, bird watching, wildlife viewing, climbing, fishing, rafting, kayaking, and in the winter months cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.

Climate - Weather can vary greatly between the canyon rim and canyon floor. Summer daytime temperatures range between 60 to 100F (15 to 38C), nights 30 to 50F (-1 to 10C) Winter daytime temperatures range between 20 to 40F (-6 to 4C), nights -10 to 20F (-23 to -6C) Precipitation is minimal, brief afternoon thunderstorms can occur during the summer. Layered clothing appropriate for the season is recommended.

Location - The park is located in western Colorado, approximately 250 miles SW of Denver. South Rim: 15 miles east of Montrose, via U.S. Hwy 50 and CO Hwy 347 North Rim: 11 miles south of Crawford, via CO Hwy 92 and North Rim Road (closed in winter).

Current Conditions & Trip Reports

Trip Reports:
Add your own trip Report! Newly re-released feature. One of the most popular features on Wildernet, trip reports allow you to share your experiences with others. This is an invaluable resource for determining what to expect on your outdoor adventure, so please participate! To prevent spamming, you must be a registered user of Wildernet in order to submit a trip report

Filed By: Sarah (Colorado Springs, CO)
Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Neutral
Report: May 31-June 1, 2003, our group of four experienced lady backpakers decended the Warner route into the Black Canyon of the Gunnison. Though we are proud of ourselves for completing the trip, words we used to describe this route include "brutal", "unforgiving", "insane", "crazy", and "punishing". Do not let the short distance fool you - the 35% grade will test your will and your body. Do not attempt this trip if you are not in solid physical condition, capable of packing light, able to scrample up and down boulder fields and slick mud shoots and willing to tolerate pain and soreness afterward. The reward, of course, is a campsite on the shaded banks of the rushing Gunnison River, embraced by the sheer walls of the Black Canyon. Enjoy yourselves!

Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: Loved the public camp grounds maintained by the locals! Blue Mesa is fantastic! Try it in early summer and visit the Grand Canyon!!!

More Information

Contact Information:
Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, 102 Elk Creek , Gunnison, CO, 81230, Phone: 970-641-2337
, cure_vis_mail@nps.gov

Additional Information:
Colorado National Forests & Parks - Colorado is well known for its National Forests and Parks which include 14,000-foot mountains, world-class ski resorts, semiarid deserts, ancient Indian ruins and wide open plains.
Gunnison Area - Gunnison is located in the southwestern section of Colorado. It is the namesake of Captain John W. Gunnison, a surveyor for the U.S. Geological Survey, who was killed after scouting the area in 1853.
Lake City Area - This mountain hamlet lies between the Uncompahgre, Gunnison and Rio Grande National Forests in southwestern Colorado.
Montrose Area - Montrose lies in the fertile Uncompahgre River Valley. This area was once used by Ute Indians for farming and hunting. Today it serves the many ranchers and recreationists that use the surrounding terrain.

Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park - Official agency website


About Wildernet |  Email to a Friend  |  Disclaimer |  Privacy |  Contact Us  | Comments & Suggestions
Advertisers & Sponsors |  Owners & Operators |  Tourism Promotors
©1995-2019 Interactive Outdoors Inc. All rights reserved.