Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

By Staff,
The Painted Wall in Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

See a striking narrow chasm

There is no exaggeration in saying that Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park is one of the nation’s most breathtaking scenic treasures. The park evolved from a monument established in 1933 to a national park in 1999. Its narrow canyon walls stretch 2,700 feet high from the canyon bottom toward the sky. Just 20 minutes from downtown Montrose, Colo., this national park features easy to strenuous trails.

Aside from its scenic splendor, the Black Canyon plays host to an amazing variety of outdoor adventures. In summer the park offers plentiful options for hiking, biking, rafting, kayaking, and expert-level rock climbing. In wintertime, the canyon can be viewed in its quiet magnificence by adventurers on snowshoes and cross-country skis.

South Rim Visitor Center overlook at Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

Reconnect with friends during an overnight stay in the rustic RV and camping area on the canyon rim, fish the Gold Medal waters of the Gunnison River in the canyon’s depths, and marvel at the celestial display in the night sky.

An International Dark Sky Park, the Black (as locals fondly refer to the canyon) offers not only a unique mosaic of beauty during the day, but paints a surreal lightscape at night.

Find fishing outfitters, farm-to-table restaurants, and comfortable lodging at the park's gateway town, Montrose, Colorado.

Black Canyon by the Numbers


Cost of backcountry permit


Temperature of the Gunnison River


Number of feet high poison ivy is in the inner canyon


Height in feet of the narrow canyon walls


Year it became a national monument


Year it became a national park

For more information:

Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

City of Montrose Office of Business and Tourism
(855) 497-8558