Our QTVR image is of the visitor center on the south rim of the canyon.
Black Canyon National Park is the United States newest national park. It was designated a national park on October 21, 1999. Access is by paved road 15 miles east of Montrose, Colorado. While it does have both a south and a North rim, there is no bridge between. A campground is located on both sides of the canyon.
Colorado Ute Indians inhabited the area many years ago. The canyon was declared inaccessible in a government expedition dated 1873, 1874. It is so deep and sheer vertical cliffs that very little sunlight can penetrate. Early travelers found it foreboding.
Since 1930 local citizens began lobbying to include the canyon in the national Park System. It was proclaimed a national monument in 1933. The Gunnison water diversion tunnel was completed in 1909, and delivers irrigation water to the Uncompaghre Valley.
Black Canyon Gunnison River is 33 miles long in the canyon. It drops an average of 96 feet per mile, and at one point drops 480 feet in one two mile stretch. At Warner Point the canyon gorge is 2772 feet deep.