Colorado Canyons National Conservation Area

Quick Facts

Colorado Canyons National Conservation Area

Colorado

(970) 244-3000

Map Directions

Things To Do

Overview

The Colorado Canyons National Conservation Area which has been rename the McInnis Canyons National Conservation Area, encompasses a diverse landscape of salt brush desert and the dramatic red-rock canyons of the Black Ridge Canyons Wilderness. The National Conservation Area is located on the flank of the Uncompahgre Plateau, which rises like a giant rolling wave over the Grand Valley in western Colorado. Rugged canyons descend to the Colorado River and contain some of the most spectacular landforms found anywhere in the country. Rattlesnake Canyon, Dinosaur Hill, Devils Canyon and Mee Canyon are just a few of the areas that contribute to the mystery, splendor and diversity of this landscape. Visitors will not find paved roads, visitor centers, or manicured trail heads, but they may discover a sense of wonder, exploration and adventure in a landscape of humbling beauty. The rural lifestyle of Mesa County is also an important value and traditional use of the area by livestock will continue.

Map of Colorado Canyons NCA

Latitude, Longitude: 39.136585, -108.833485

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Activities

  • Boating

    The Ruby-Horsethief section of the Colorado River, from Loma, Colorado, to Westwater, Utah, is a 25-mile stretch of mostly flatwater with sections of Class I and II. This section of the Colorado runs through beautiful red rock canyons and has many day hike opportunities offering both solitude and exploration. The Black Rock section is composed of rock known as Vishnu schist, which dates back about 1.7 billion years. This same rock, which geologists refer to as "an unconformity", is exposed in certain sections of the Grand Canyon. There is an abundance of wildlife including great blue herons, bald eagles, peregrine falcons, mule deer, and desert bighorn sheep. Please note that humans are prohibited from approaching within ½ mile of eagle nests or harassing the birds in any way. Look up in old cottonwoods trees and you are likely to spot the nests and eagles.

  • Bicycling

    Mountain biking is limited to designated roads and trails. You will find within a specific area there may be many roads/trails. However, the only ones that may be ridden are the roads/trails designated as "open" to mountain biking

  • Camping

    There are three designated campgrounds in the area and multiple areas open for dispersed or remote camping.

  • Hiking

    There are numerous trails available in the NCA. Trails range for easy day-hikes to longer, more rugged backpacking trips. Be sure to bring enough water while hiking.

  • Historic Sites

    Opportunities are available.

  • Horseback Riding

    Horseback riding is a popular activity in the NCA.

  • Off Highway Vehicles

    OHV driving is a popular activity.

Park Partners

Friends of McInnis Canyons National Conservation Area

The public is invited to get to know the lands of the McInnis Canyons National Conservation Area through horseback riding, a paleontology walk, off-highway vehicle (OHV) riding, hiking, and mountain bike riding. The Friends of McInnis Canyons, the Bureau of Land Management, Colorado Plateau Mountain Bike Trail Association (COPMOBA), the Museum of the West, and other recreational organizations will be leading a series of guided outings in the NCA on Sunday, November 7.

Directions

Driving

Located 10 miles west of Grand Junction, in west central Colorado.

Phone Numbers

Primary

(970) 244-3000

Links