Black Canyon Gunnison Point


Rating: 
Round Trip Distance: .4 miles
Difficulty: Moderate
Elevation: 8091 - 8158 feet
Cellphone: 0 bars
Usage: Hiking - No Dogs
Time: 30 mins.
Facilities: Vault toilet, Visitor Center
Trailhead: South Rim Visitor Center
Fee: $15/vehicle
Attractions: Scenic canyon overlook, gift shop
   

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The Gunnison Point trail is located within the South Rim section of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park. The short trail leads to a picturesque overlook where visitors can easily take in some of the most spectacular views of the Black Canyon. The jagged rocks perched precariously on the rugged cliffs give the river gorge a most formidable appearance.


The Gunnison Point trail is located on the cliffs behind the Visitor Center. The trail can be seen through the large picture windows from inside the building.


You can get to the trailhead either through the Visitor Center or from the porch on the west side of the building.


At the base of the short steps the trail splits with the Oak Flat Loop beginning on the left fork and the Gunnison Point trail on the right.


The trail leading out onto the point has large slaps of rock for steps with a split rail fence for safety. The setting of the trail extending out into the rugged canyon is simply a thing of beauty.


A short bridge spans a crevice in the cliff.


From the overlook you can see into the bowels of the canyon to the Gunnison River 1840 feet/561m below which continues to cut away at the Precambrian-age rocks of the ever deepening gorge.


The point is almost 70 feet lower than the parking area so a little bit of grunt work is required.


There is a split in the trail near a kiosk where you can take the right fork that leads to a second overlook that allows for some good views of the canyon downstream.


The second overlook is much more primitive in comparison to the first but it is an easy hike and worth the little bit of extra effort.


The Gunnison River can be seen disappearing into a narrow passage in the canyon. On the right the tall vertical fins of rock almost look like they are separating from the canyon walls like icebergs calving off a glacier.


The Gunnison Point trail is one of the most popular in the park. When people stop at the Visitor Center and see the trail out onto the point it is hard to resist taking a closer look. If you hike the trail without going to the second overlook it should come out to only about a quarter mile. If you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is 'Take a hike'.