Area Activities

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North Rim of the Black Canyon National Park

Make a day trip to the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park North Rim. The Black Canyon of the Gunnison 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 North Rim via Crawford has fewer crowds, spectacular views and unprecedented heights. The sheerness and depths of this canyon once inspired president Roosevelt to consider this one of the state’s most unusual features.

People travel in from around the world to climb the walls of the Black Canyon. There are easy, moderate and difficult trails for those who do not wish to scale the walls. Special permits and skills are required to climb the walls. Others can just observe these climbers from a safe distance and enjoy the beauty of the canyon.

For more information, visit the official National Park Service Black Canyon of the Gunnison web site.

Grand Mesa

It’s called the Grand Mesa for very good reason. It’s 4,000 acres of of outdoor playground with over 300 lakes and a few streams. These waters are pure and fresh. The product of rain, snow melt and natural springs, there is plenty of water. Fish like water, so there are plenty of fish. Stop in at one of the lodges, they usually are dialed in for the best fishing in the area. Many lakes are right along the road, some are a short hike and for those with ambitions of solitude and great fishing you can hike into lakes a bit further out.

Grand Mesa Byway Link

Gold Medal Waters of the Gunnison River

Some of the most pristine fishing in North America can be found right here. The Gunnison River has guides that offer trips anglers dream of and for those with less in their pockets that same river has access points that don’t require a guide and that you can walk right up to. It’s a river for everyone, but only the best will lure in that “lunker photo op.”

The Gunnison River is also a favorite for boating, canoeing and SUP use.

Gunnison Gorge NCA Link

Thinking of a day on the Gunnison?  Western Slope SUP

Guided outdoor trips on the Gunnison River?  Gunnison River Expeditions

Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area

The Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area was dedicated on August 12, 2009 by Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar.  The NCA consists of 210,000 acres of protected land in Delta, Montrose and Mesa Counties.  This National Conservation Area includes the 66,280 acre  Dominguez Canyon Wilderness.  This national resource is known for its spectacular canyon country of the Uncompahgre Plateau. Red-rock canyons and sandstone bluffs hold geological and paleontological resources spanning 600 million years, as well as many cultural and historic sites.  Dominguez-Escalante NCA Link

West Elk Loop Scenic Byway

Skirting the West Elk Mountains that border the North Fork Valley, the loop offers wide vistas of rural Western Colorado. Towns include Redstone, Carbondale, Hotchkiss, Crawford, Gunnison, and Crested Butte. The drive takes one through the White River and Gunnison National Forrests, Curecanti National Recreation Area, Crawford and Paonia State Parks, and the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park.

West Elk Loop Byway Link