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Contact: Sandra Snell-Dobert, 970-641-2337, ext. 227
A mild spring has led to early openings of facilities and services in Curecanti National Recreation Area and Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park.
At Curecanti, Lake Fork boat ramp and inspections are open daily from 6:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. through April 18. On April 19, Elk Creek and Lake Fork inspection hours will change to 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. The Elk Creek boat ramp and inspection station will be open 7 days a week and the Lake Fork ramp and inspection station will be open Thursdays through Sundays. Further changes to hours, days of operation, and launch locations will be coming in early May as additional personnel arrives to staff inspection stations. Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) inspections are required prior to launch whenever ramps are open.
The Elk Creek Visitor Center is open 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily beginning the week of April 16. Annual boat permits and Federal Lands Recreation Passes are available during those hours.
The South Rim drive and the North Rim of Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park opened in late March, allowing access to all viewpoints on both rims. Be prepared for muddy conditions. The Bureau of Reclamation announced the opening of the East Portal Road on April 9. The South Rim, North Rim, and East Portal campgrounds are open, but water is not yet available.
The South Rim Visitor Center is open 9 am to 4 pm daily through April 21. Visitor Center hours will expand to 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on April 22.
“The mild spring weather this year has allowed Curecanti and Black Canyon of the Gunnison to open facilities earlier than usual this year,” said Superintendent Bruce Noble, “and we are looking forward to welcoming visitors and boaters over the coming months.”
Check the parks’ websites for updated information as spring conditions change rapidly. For Black Canyon: www.nps.gov/blca and for Curecanti: www.nps.gov/cure