Rafting on the Taylor River
Photo By Three Rivers Resort

Water Sports

The Gunnison area has waterways for every type of water sport. From rapids and big waves to calm, open expanses, activites for all water enthusiasts are possible.

Rafting and Kayaking

Rafters and kayakers will find much to enjoy among the many rivers and creeks in the Gunnison Country but the Gunnison and Taylor Rivers provide the most excitement. Duckies, which are user-friendly, self-bailing inflatable kayaks, are also popular on area waters. Area guides offer all types of craft and all types of trips, from non-threatening float trips to rodeo-worthy whitewater adventures.

The lively Taylor River froths through one of the most beautiful canyons in Colorado, lined with dense forest and cliffs (look for bighorn sheep, deer and elk). Big waves, rocks, eddies and tricky passages spice up the ride.

The Lake Fork promises adrenaline during the early summer run-off. It runs at bigger volume than the Taylor, with rollercoaster rapids and larger holes.

Boating, Sailing, Windsurfing

For boaters, sailors and windsurfers, the reservoirs of the Gunnison Country hold special appeal. Curecanti National Recreation Area's "Blue Mesa Lake" (Colorado's largest man-made body of water) reaches deep into the secluded side canyons, ripe for exploration by boaters. The reservoir's three wider basins attract sailors and water skiers. Windsurfers prefer Blue Mesa's Bay of Chickens. Elk Creek and Lake Fork marinas rent out pontoon boats and fishing boats.

Crystal and Morrow Point reservoirs lie in the beginning of the Black Canyon, just west of Blue Mesa. They are accessible only by trails, so boating is limited to hand-carried craft. These reservoirs are beautiful, but releases from the dams can make them treacherous; check with the Park Service Visitors' Center at Elk Creek.

The Morrow Point boat tour winds through a fjord-like canyon to the Morrow Point Dam, a two-hour excursion that features narration about geological and historical highlights. The trail to this boat tour begins with 232 stairs and a 1/4 mile walk to the dock. For more information on boat tours, visit www.nps.gov/cure/planyourvisit/boattour.htm.

North of Gunnison at the end of Taylor Canyon, Taylor Reservoir offers excellent boating (and camping) facilities; boat rentals are available at the dock. Taylor Park has fishing for rainbows, browns, cutthroats, lake trout, kokanee salmon and northern pike. Fishing can be good from shore with easiest access along the eastern and southern shores. Wading along the southeast corner near the inlet can provide action for both trout and pike.



Three Rivers Resort

Fly Fishing, guided fly fishing from rafts. A variety of raft trips.
130 County Road 742
P.O. Box 339
Almont, CO 81210
888-761-3474 (fax)
website · email

Scenic River Tours, Inc.

Rafting, fishing, kayaking & rock climbing Choose from 2 hours to 3 days on 7 different rivers. Offices located in Gunnison & Taylor Canyon.
703 W. Tomichi Ave.
Gunnison, CO 81230
website · email

Gunnison River Festival

The festival highlights a wide range of outdoor recreation available in the Gunnison Valley. Events at the Gunnison Whitewater Park will feature a freestyle kayak competition as well as events and activities for outdoor enthusiasts like a community raft race and kid's games with festivities extending to downtown Gunnison.
234 N. Main St. Suite 3C
Gunnison, CO 81230
website · email