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Exploring Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

Here is our story of our adventure exploring Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park.

By: Chelsea Brinkley + Save to a List

Black Canyon of the Gunnison is the only National Park we hadn’t visited in Colorado yet so we decided to pack up the camper and take a little road trip to check it out. It was about a 4.5-hour drive from where we live so not too far plus the drive was gorgeous. After leaving Black Canyon we stopped at Twin Lakes, CO for a few days to camp with friends on the way back home.


We went to the park in September and it was a really great time to be there. We took our camper and stayed at the South Rim Campground. It was warm during the day and cool at night. I’d recommend visiting in September or October if you can only because during summer I bet would be pretty hot – there’s not a lot of tree coverage. Having said that, I’m sure it’s beautiful at any time of the year.

Honestly, you can enjoy this park in 2 days. We chose to explore the south rim rather than the north rim which was a bit more out of the way.


Drive the rim and stop at all the viewpoints!

My absolute favorite don’t miss viewpoints are Chasm View, Painted Wall, Sunset View, and Pulpit Rock Overlook. 

Hike! The Rim Rock Trail is a dog-friendly hike with beautiful views. We also did the Warner Point Trail and it was amazing with a gorgeous viewpoint at the end to sit and enjoy a snack or our favorite tradition, #brewsandviews

If you’re feeling extra adventurous you can even explore down in the canyon. Make sure you check here for more details on that.


If you’re going to bring your RV or camp, I’d highly recommend staying at the South Rim Campground. It’s first come, first serve though and it fills up quick so try to get there as early as you can.

We took our camper so I can’t speak to any other lodging but Montrose is a town that’s nearby that has some other lodging options too.

TIP: if you want to work remotely from the park, there are some picnic tables by the Warner Point Trail which surprisingly have great Verizon LTE service! We made lunch in the camper then worked from there on our laptops using our hotspot for a couple of days.

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

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