3 Days, 3 Hikes: Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, CO

Last week, we hiked to an overlook trail at Black Canyon. It’s at the end of the south rim drive.

The trail is pretty good. It’s a mix of packed dirt with occasional rocks.

The views from up there are stunning. You are walking a ridge to the west. The canyon is on the north. Trees and mountain are to the south.

We made it out to the point fairly quickly – it’s only about 0.8 miles one way. There are some rocks up there to sit on, and a bit of shade. There are no guardrails!

A nice couple took a picture of the kids and I.

The view west down the canyon is spectacular.

This is the north rim from the point.

There is not a lot of cover up there. Sunscreen is a must during the middle of the day.

This is the town of Montrose to the SW.

This mountain is a ridge or two over to the SSE of Montrose. I did some map checking, and I think that this is the mountain where Telluride Ski Area is located.

The trail is usually wide and smooth.

This was a quartize rock. I was trying to capture how well it reflected the sun at a certain angle.

There were a surprising number of wildflowers up there, and no cactus that I saw.

Here is the GPS trail overlaid on a Google Earth map.

And here is the altitude track for the hike.

As a bit of perspective, I flew over Black Canyon a couple months ago. Here is a photo I took from 30Kft, with the area we hiked highlighted.

Make darn sure you carry water on this hike. It’s hot and dry even in the first week of June. The nearest water is the park visitor center. The total length for this hike is 1.6 miles out and back. Not long, but exhilarating!

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One Response to “3 Days, 3 Hikes: Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, CO”

  1. Index: Family Trip, 30 May-07 Jun 2010 « Bill Hensley’s Random Blog Says:

    […] Black Canyon of the Gunnison NP […]

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