The Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park was established on October 21, 1999, and covers 30,779.83 acres of land. This park incorporates thespans 12 miles of the 48 miles long Black Canyon. The side of the canyon in the park is known to be its most dramatic and deepest side of the canyon. While there are many other canyons in the country which are deeper and longer, the distinctive feature of the black canyon is that it only receives about 33 minutes of sunlight throughout the day. This makes it the darkest and narrowest canyon of all.
The depth and steepness of the Black Canyon formed because of various geologic processes simultaneously. The biggest contributor towards its carving is the Gunnison River. It runs through the canyon and drops about 34 feet of the mountain, which makes it the fifth steepest mountain in North America. The roads along the South and North rims reach 8,000 feet above sea level. The South Rim is more accessible to the visitors as compared to the North Rim. The pinnacles and block islands are the most striking features of the canyon.
This national park is one of the most popular spots for locals and tourists alike and receives 308,962 visitors every year. It is the busiest during the summer season when groups of people come to hike through its main unmaintained trials. There are two visitor centers in this park - South Rim Visitor Center and North Rim Ranger Station. The South Rim is the main visitor center and the ideal place to begin your trip. You can get all the information you need from the personnel, maps, or through the interpretive displays. You can also obtain a wilderness permit here. The ranger station at the North Rim opens intermittently during the summer season.