The Black Mountain WSA is characterized by a series of ridges and mesas cut by several deep gulches, small canyons, and side drainages. The Smith Gulch drainage runs through the middle of the WSA, creating a valley. Part of the eastern boundary follows a ridgetop to an unnamed peak, which is the highest point in the WSA.
Within the upper end of Smith Gulch and side drainages are highly-eroded soils with colorful bands of red, pink, yellow, tan, gray, and green. Black Mountain itself, Kissinger Gulch, Smith Gulch, and numerous side drainages or canyons provide many opportunities for solitude.
Total Area: 10,191 acres
Elevation Range: ~5,950 to ~7,262 feet
BLM Field Office: White River
Designated: 1980 (Wilderness Study Area)
Location: The Black Mountain WSA is located in Rio Blanco County, approximately 11 miles west of Meeker. There are no other WSAs within the entire Piceance Basin region, other than the adjacent Windy Gulch WSA, which has different ecosystems.
Flora & Fauna: Vegetation consists mainly of pinyon-juniper woodlands, sagebrush, saltbush/greasewood, and Douglas fir. Fauna includes mule deer, elk, black bears, mountain lions and golden eagles.
Recreation: Activities include hiking, backpacking, camping, horseback riding, hunting, and photography. For more information, visit the Recreation page. Please note that though unconfined recreation is encouraged in WSAs, specific types of recreation may be barred from a specific area to prevent degradation of natural conditions.
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White River Field Office | (970) 878-3800 | 220 E. Market St., Meeker, CO 81641