Gunnison Bluffs Date: 12/7/2009 Difficulty: Easy Miles: Approx. 5 Miles Round Trip Rating: Type: Loop/Shuttle Whitewater Trailhead GPS Coordinates: 38°59’30.38″N, 108°28’23.23″W Sunlight Drive Trailhead GPS Coordinates: 39° 1’41.95″N, 108°31’40.02″W
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Although this trail is considered a loop there are basically two trail heads to the area. The first and least used is located south of Highway 50 and 28 ½ road on Orchard Mesa. To access this trail head travel south on Highway 50 (AKA 5th street) and turn right onto 28 ½ road. Drive behind a small roadside park called Lions Park and you will see a sign that indicates where to park.
The other and most known access is off of Highway 50 behind the Mesa County Landfill. To access this trail head travel south on Highway 50 for about 6 miles from down town Grand Junction. Turn right onto the Old Whitewater Road which is the landfill road. Travel about a ½ mile to the entrance of the landfill. From this point bear left and continue traveling for about 1.5 miles to a larger fenced area on the right hand side of the road.
The trail gradually climbs a short distance following a dried up wash where it eventually opens out into an open area. At about the ½ mile mark there is a trail that leads to the left along a fence. I have observed signs throughout this area indicating it is private property. Please respect the landowner and remain off of their property.
As the trail continues along it is bordered on the right with low lying cliffs and on the left with much higher cliffs leading down to the Gunnison River. There are some really nice views of the river and various canyons on the other side. There are quite a few opportunities to view wildlife by the river.
This trail is very popular with people who wish to bring their dogs out for a good run as well as those who wish to use it for their horses and also mountain biking.