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Dominguez Canyon Wilderness Area

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Distance: 2.4 miles


A 10 mile round trip will take you into the Dominguez Canyon. Desert terrain with beautiful sandstone rock formations, free flowing stream, Desert Bighorn Sheep, lizards, and ancient petroglyphs abound here. Better in the cool months of late fall through early spring. Very hot in summer months.
  • Desert Bighorn23.JPG
  • New Bridge1.JPG
  • Rock Art1.JPG

Head upstream (south) on the east side of the Gunnison River along side the railroad tracks until you come to the track crossing, then on until you reach the new footbridge across the River.  Total distance from the parking lot to the Canyon trailhead is approx. 2 miles. 

Immediately upon entering the Canyon, you will see evidence of past days including an old corral, rock shelters, small water falls.  The trail is clearly defined.  Approx. 1/2 mile from the Canyon trailhead is located the confluence of the Big and Little Dominguez Creeks.  Bear to your right and continue into the Big Canyon.  As you proceed, give attention to the high rock precipices and boulder fields to your right where you may see Desert Bighorn sheep.  Look closely as they blend in well with the terrain.

At about the 1.5 mile mark from the Canyon TH, you will come to the first evidence of ancient petroglyphs.  A small sign on the trail will bring your attention to those which are located immediately behind this sign.  Proceed another 200 feet or so and observe a larger collection on the right side of the trail.

Continue on to investigate other features of the Canyon.  At about the 2 mile mark you will observe a side canyon to the left.  This canyon has small potholes in the stream, with some very interesting sandstone slab formations located here and there.

Back in the Big Canyon and approx. 1/2 mile further on, you will observe a very large spall (shallow cave) on the right hand side.

A good pack trip could be taken from the Dominguez Camp Ground, located approx. 13 miles up the Canyon from the lower TH.

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