2022 Heartland Pioneer
2022 Heartland Pioneer
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In a gorgeous valley in southwestern Colorado is the town of Gunnison. You’ll feel like you stepped back in time, to the days of the wild, wild west, when you visit Main Street and enjoy the natural wonders that surround this town. From mom-and-pop shops to sophisticated restaurants, Gunnison, Colorado puts you in the perfect spot to base your vacation travels in and around this part of the country. Tucked in between the San Juan Mountains and the famous Rocky Mountains, Gunnison is an outdoor person’s treasure with fishing, boating, hiking, bird watching and much, much more available just a short drive away in your rental RV. Whether you visit in the winter or summer, you’ll find lots to do in the Gunnison area, and everyone on your trip will find something that they’ll never forget. Start your adventures today, and book an RV in Gunnison, Colorado!
It’s not an exaggeration to say that the area around Gunnison, CO is probably one of the finest places to be if you are interested in outdoor activities, and beautiful natural sights and wonders. Within an hour’s drive north in your Gunnison rental motorhome, you’ll find yourself in Mt. Crested Butte, also known as Colorado’s “Last Great Ski Town.” Here skiers and snowboarders enjoy thousands of acres of skiing terrain in the winter, and in the summer this mountain area becomes a paradise for hikers and mountain bikers.
The Curecanti National Recreation Area is home to Colorado’s largest body of water, the Blue Mesa Reservoir. Here, visitors can enjoy fishing, canoeing, sailing, hiking, camping and mountain biking. This recreation area is actually a series of three reservoirs along the Gunnison River, and is best known for salmon and trout fishing, but offers a myriad of outdoor activities and sightseeing opportunities.
A visit to the Gunnison area is not complete without spending some good quality time in Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park. Experience world-class whitewater rafting in one of the most rugged landscapes in the world, with sheer and steep cliff sides of canyon jutting down to the shores of the Gunnison River. Hiking and bicycling are also favorite activities, as well as camping, bird watching, canoeing and kayaking. See majestic wildlife including the regal Golden Eagle.
There are more than 750 miles of trails in the Gunnison area that can be explored by hiking or mountain biking. An amazing scenic drive is the West Elk Loop, which winds its way through the towns of Gunnison, Crested Butte, Paonia and other historic mountain cities and towns throughout the West Elk Mountains.
Rock climbers love this area, with beautiful granite mountains and cliff sides to explore one foot at a time. A favorite spot is the Hartman Rocks Recreation Area with its over 8,000 acres of climbing paradise. But this rocking area is not just for climbers! Visitors also enjoy hiking, horseback riding, trail running, cross-country skiing and motorcycling.
River rafting is another fun activity in the Gunnison River area. Kayakers and rafters commonly start upriver near Almont and enjoy the spectacular views while they drift and paddle 10 miles south to Gunnison. Shuttles and rentals are available, and the kayak park is below the Highway 50 bridge right on the Gunnison River.
To experience classic Old West charm, you just can’t beat Gunnison, Colorado. Its historic main street looks like it did a hundred years ago, with quaint shops, boutiques, stores, bars and restaurants. This cattle ranching community celebrates its history and heritage each year in July during its 10-day Cattlemen’s Days rodeo event.
But, Gunnison is not just about the wild west. It’s a modern small town with fun and amenities for kids of all ages. One of its newest attractions is the man-made whitewater park, right on the Gunnison River. Enjoy a playground of rock structures, and stretches of river for kayaks and rafts. You can even fish, right in the city!
The clear, unpolluted skies make star gazing a natural wonder in and of itself here in Gunnison. Tucked in the valley, there is no light pollution and the stars appear so close, it’s as if you could pluck them from the sky. You can really take in the clear night skies by visiting the Gunnison Valley Observatory, and its 30-inch reflector telescope brings those stars even closer as you explore our place in this amazing universe.
Gunnison is an arts town, whether it is performing arts, visual, literary or musical. Between the Gunnison Arts Center and Crested Butte Create District, art is showcased in exhibition galleries, theaters, artist-owned studios and galleries, numerous performance venues and year-round festivals and events like the Crested Butte Music Festival, Crested Butte Film Festival and much, much more.
To learn about the history of Gunnison, stop at the open-air Gunnison Pioneer Museum. Visit a one-room schoolhouse, 1876 post office, and a favorite caboose train car. Count on spending at least 3-4 hours here, as there are literally thousands of artifacts and interesting displays, giving you a peek into the western settlement and prehistory of the area. Since it is an open-air museum, it is only open from the end of May thru the end of September.
Jorgensen Park is a local favorite, and a great place for visitors. With just about every park amenity you can think of, from fishing to skating, climbing, playgrounds, tennis, aquatics and more, it’s a great place to take the kids, and adults love it, too. There are also baseball fields, picnic areas and plenty of parking with plenty of room for your Gunnison rental RV.
With its Old West charms, combined with rich arts and cultural activities, situated in one of the most beautiful mountain valleys in the west, Gunnison can’t be beat. You’ll feel more like you’re visiting family and old friends, as folks are laid back and helpful here. The second you arrive in the Gunnison camper rental, you’ll feel your pace start to slow down as you really start taking in the spirit and hominess of Gunnison, Colorado. No matter what season you arrive, there’s always something to do, especially when it comes to outdoorsy activities. Gunnison is a little treasure of a town, worth your time to explore and enjoy.
With so many outdoor areas, you will find amazing places to park your Gunnison rental camper. From the state parks, national forests and municipal areas, as well as national park spots, you can put your Gunnison motorhome rental smack in the middle of a magical place of natural wonder. There are also many private RV parks and resorts in the area, including some that have full amenities including pools, laundry facilities, restaurants, camp stores and sightseeing tours.
With mountain passes in the area, check road conditions before you drive your Gunnison RV rental, especially in the winter. Most roads are passable for even larger rigs. There’s a Walmart on the north end of town, and several full grocery and convenience stores, along with gas stations with regular and diesel fuel.
Gunnison is a small town, so you’ll find some great basic eats alongside breweries, pubs, and some pretty fancy restaurants. Of course, being cattle country, this is a great town to find a terrific burger or a tender steak. River trout is a common menu item, as well as salmon, fished from local waters. Fresh local produce, including organic selections, is available at the Gunnison Farmers Market, held Saturday mornings and Wednesday afternoons from June through October. There are plenty of gluten-free options and vegetarian/vegan choices throughout the area, so you’ll be able to enjoy whatever food you like, no matter where you go.
Start planning your grand southwestern Colorado vacation today, and book an RV rental in Gunnison, CO!