|Gunnison Gorge Wilderness|
|Location||Montrose / Delta counties, Colorado, USA|
|Nearest city||Montrose, CO|
|Area||17,784 acres (71.97 km2)|
|Governing body||Bureau of Land Management|
The Gunnison Gorge Wilderness is a U.S. Wilderness Area located immediately northwest of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park. The 17,784-acre (71.97 km2) wilderness area established in 1999 includes 14 miles (23 km) of the Gunnison River inside the Gunnison Gorge National Conservation Area.
Montrose County is one of the 64 counties of the U.S. state of Colorado. As of the 2010 census, the population was 41,276. The county seat is Montrose, for which the county is named.
Gunnison County is the fifth-most extensive of the 64 counties in the U.S. state of Colorado. As of the 2010 census, the population was 15,324. The county seat is Gunnison. The county was named for John W. Gunnison, a United States Army officer and captain in the Army Topographical Engineers, who surveyed for the transcontinental railroad in 1853.
Delta County is one of the 64 counties of the U.S. state of Colorado. As of the 2010 census, the population was 30,952. The county seat is Delta.
Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park is an American national park located in western Colorado and managed by the National Park Service. There are two primary entrances to the park: the south rim entrance is located 15 miles (24 km) east of Montrose, while the north rim entrance is 11 miles (18 km) south of Crawford and is closed in the winter. The park contains 12 miles (19 km) of the 48-mile (77 km) long Black Canyon of the Gunnison River. The national park itself contains the deepest and most dramatic section of the canyon, but the canyon continues upstream into Curecanti National Recreation Area and downstream into Gunnison Gorge National Conservation Area. The canyon's name owes itself to the fact that parts of the gorge only receive 33 minutes of sunlight a day, according to Images of America: The Black Canyon of the Gunnison. In the book, author Duane Vandenbusche states, "Several canyons of the American West are longer and some are deeper, but none combines the depth, sheerness, narrowness, darkness, and dread of the Black Canyon."
The Gunnison River is a tributary of the Colorado River, 180 miles (290 km) long, in the Southwestern state of Colorado. It is the largest tributary of the Colorado River in Colorado, with a mean flow of 2,570 cu ft/s (73 m3/s).
The Collegiate Peaks Wilderness is a 168,000-acre (680 km2) area located in central Colorado between Leadville and Buena Vista to the east and Aspen to the west and Crested Butte to the southwest. Most of the area is in the San Isabel and Gunnison National Forests, with a smaller area in the White River National Forest southeast of Aspen. Most of the area is in northwest Chaffee County with smaller portions in Gunnison, Pitkin, and Lake counties.
The Lost Creek Wilderness is a 119,790-acre (485 km2) wilderness area located in central Colorado in Jefferson and Park counties south of the town of Bailey. The area is situated entirely within the boundaries of the Pike National Forest.
The Powderhorn Wilderness is a 62,050-acre (251.1 km2) wilderness area in Hinsdale and Gunnison Counties, Colorado, USA, located 5 miles (8.0 km) northeast of Lake City. Most of the northern part of the area, 48,115 acres (194.71 km2), about 77.5%, is located on Bureau of Land Management land and its southern portion, 13,935 acres (56.39 km2), about 22.5%, is located within the Gunnison National Forest.
White River National Forest is a National Forest in northwest Colorado. It is named after the White River that passes through its northern section. It is the most visited National Forest in the United States, primarily from users of the twelve ski areas within its boundaries.
Uncompahgre National Forest is a U.S. National Forest covering 955,229 acres in parts of Montrose, Mesa, San Miguel, Ouray, Gunnison, Hinsdale, San Juan, and Delta Counties in western Colorado. Only its headquarters is in Delta County, in the city of Delta. It borders the San Juan National Forest to the south.
The Weminuche Wilderness is a wilderness area in southwest Colorado managed by the United States Forest Service as part of the San Juan National Forest on the west side of the Continental Divide and the Rio Grande National Forest on the east side of the divide. It is about 5 miles (8.0 km) south east of the town of Silverton and about 15 miles (24 km) northeast of Durango. At 499,771 acres (2,022.50 km2), it is the largest wilderness area in the state of Colorado. The wilderness was named after the Weminuche Indians.
The Gunnison National Forest is a U.S. National Forest covering 1,672,136 acres in Mesa, Gunnison, Hinsdale and Saguache Counties in Western part of the U.S. state of Colorado. It borders the White River National Forest to the north, the Grand Mesa and Uncompahgre National Forests to the west, the San Isabel National Forest to the east and the Rio Grande National Forest to south. It lies in parts of five counties. In descending order of land area within the forest they are Gunnison, Saguache, Hinsdale, Delta, and Montrose counties.
The Mark O. Hatfield Wilderness is a wilderness area located on the northern side of Mount Hood in the northwestern Cascades of the U.S. state of Oregon, near the Columbia River Gorge and within Mount Hood National Forest. Prior to Wilderness designation it was known as the Columbia Gorge Recreation Area.
The Gunnison Gorge National Conservation Area is a 62,844-acre (254.32 km2) National Conservation Area located in west-central Colorado near Montrose. It is managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) as part of the National Landscape Conservation System. 57,725 acres (233.60 km2) were designated in the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park and Gunnison Gorge National Conservation Area Act of 1999. The Black Canyon of the Gunnison Boundary Revision Act of 2003 expanded the NCA to its current size.
The Fossil Ridge Wilderness is a U.S. Wilderness Area located approximately 16 miles (26 km) northeast of Gunnison, Colorado in the Gunnison National Forest. The 13,992-acre (56.62 km2) wilderness includes Fossil Ridge, a high, exposed ridge of Paleozoic carbonates that contain epeiric sea fossils. Elevations in the wilderness range from 8,880 feet (2,710 m) at Summerville Creek to 13,254 feet (4,040 m) at the summit of Henry Mountain. Elk, deer, mountain goats, and bighorn sheep can be found in the wilderness.
The La Garita Wilderness is a U.S. Wilderness Area located in the La Garita Mountains of southern Colorado. The 129,626-acre (524.58 km2) wilderness established in 1964 in Gunnison and Rio Grande National Forests includes segments of the Colorado Trail and the Continental Divide Trail. At 14,014 feet (4,271 m), San Luis Peak is the highest point in the wilderness area.
The Maroon Bells–Snowmass Wilderness is a U.S. Wilderness Area located in the Elk Mountains of central Colorado. The 181,535-acre (734.65 km2) wilderness was established in 1980 in the Gunnison and White River national forests. Within its boundaries are 100 miles (160 km) of trails, 6 of Colorado's fourteeners and 9 passes over 12,000 feet (3,700 m). The wilderness is named after the two peaks known as the Maroon Bells as well as Snowmass Mountain.
The Raggeds Wilderness is a U.S. Wilderness Area located in the Elk Mountains northwest of Crested Butte, Colorado. The 65,393-acre (264.64 km2) wilderness was established in 1980 in the White River and Gunnison National Forests. Elevations in the wilderness range from 6,840 feet (2,080 m) in Dark Canyon to 13,535 feet (4,125 m) at the summit of Treasure Mountain. Nearly 90 miles (140 km) of trails are within the wilderness.
The West Elk Wilderness is a U.S. Wilderness Area located northwest of Gunnison, Colorado in the West Elk Mountains. The wilderness was established in 1964 and now protects 176,412 acres (713.91 km2) within the Gunnison National Forest. Elevations in the wilderness range from 6,800 feet (2,100 m) along Coal Creek to 13,042 feet (3,975 m) at the summit of West Elk Peak. The area supports large elk and deer populations and is busiest during the fall hunting season.
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