Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park


Support Your Park

Western National Parks Association (WNPA) is a non-profit membership organization authorized by Congress to aid and promote educational and scientific activities within more than 70 park sites in the American southwest.

WNPA has roots that stretch back to 1938 when a need was recognized for continuing the public's interest and education in their national parks. Since then, they have helped millions to understand more of their natural and cultural history. They publish numerous trail guides, books and other materials that would otherwise be unavailable to the public.

Invasive Threats to Black Canyon Fisheries

The aquatic ecosystems of Black Canyon are threatened by many potentially damaging exotic organisms. The National Park Service is serious about preventing the invasion of exotic species, and asks for your help in keeping the Gunnison River clean, clear, and fishable.

The New Zealand mudsnail occurs in Colorado but is currently not at Black Canyon. If the snail were to become introduced to the Gunnison River, the fishery could be devastated. New Zealand mudsnails can harm aquatic insect communities, impacting the food chain, and can change the physical characteristics of the river by quickly reproducing in high density masses.

There is no environmentally sound or inexpensive way to eliminate New Zealand mudsnails once they are introduced.

Please help prevent further spread of these invaders:

  • CLEAN and INSPECT - Thoroughly rinse and inspect all gear and boating equipment before you leave/enter an area. Clean gear of all material coming from the water (ex: scrub soles of boots, rinse waders, drain cooling and livewell water away from shore) and inspect hard- to-clean areas like laces, insoles, etc.
  • DRY - Completely dry all gear and boating equipment for 48 hours before using in a different area. Multiple sets of gear are recommended for frequent travelers visiting many areas.
  • FREEZE, SOAK, or SPRAY - Alternative cleaning methods include freezing gear overnight, soaking gear in hot water for 5 minutes (120°F; warning, may damage Gortex®), and applying Formula 409® (50% dilution recommended) for 5 minutes (soak or shake in waterproof gear bag). Dispose of all chemicals and rinse water properly.
  • REMEMBER - Mud, sand, plant fragments, and gravel on your gear are all signs that mudsnails may be hiding in your equipment (boots, nets, boats, trailers, etc.).

It is a state and federal offense to transport or release New Zealand mudsnails.

Please report any sightings of New Zealand mudsnails to a park ranger.

Centennial Initiative 2016

On August 25, 2006 - the 90th anniversary of the National Park Service - Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne launched the National Park Centennial Initiative to prepare national parks for another century of conservation, preservation and enjoyment. Since then the National Park Service asked citizens, park partners, experts and other stakeholders what they envisioned for a second century of national parks.

A nationwide series of more than 40 listening sessions produced more than 6,000 comments that helped to shape five centennial goals. The goals and vision were presented to President Bush and to the American people on May 31st in a report called The Future of America's National Parks.

Every national park staff took their lead from this report and created local centennial strategies to describe their vision and desired accomplishments by 2016. This is just the first year, and there are many great things to come as the National Park Service prepares to celebrate 100 years!