Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park


Several hiking trails are available along the canyon rim. These are relatively easy, and offer excellent views of the canyon and panoramas of the surrounding countryside. Much more difficult are the steep routes that descend into the canyon depths. These scrambles are extremely arduous, and should only be attempted by individuals in excellent physical condition. A few primitive campsites are available along the river. A free permit is required for all hikers entering the wilderness.

From the overlooks along the South Rim Road, trails of varying length (none longer than 1.4 miles round-trip) lead to the canyon rim. The longest is the Warner Point Nature Trail at the end of the South Rim Road.

If you like the backcountry, Black Canyon has a lot of it. A portion of the park is wilderness; check with the park staff on the rules and regulations that apply.

Always let a ranger know your plans. There are no marked trails into the canyon. If you plan to make the descent, a backcountry permit is required, and it is essential to check with a park ranger who can tell you which routes to use.

Published: 29 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 15 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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