Sapinero Mesa Road/Lake City Cutoff (CR 26)

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Aliases: Lake City Cut-off

The burned and living ponderosa pine trees in this area provide an excellent place to search for woodpeckers, including the uncommon Three-toed Woodpecker. Other forest birds that can be found here include all three species of nuthatch, Mountain and Western Bluebirds, Western Tanager, and possibly even Grace’s Warbler. This road is sometimes closed in spring to protect the nesting Gunnison Sage-Grouse, which you will be lucky to find in the sagebrush here at any season. Elk, deer, pronghorn, and the local Gunnison’s Prairie-Dog are more likely.

County: Gunnison
Habitat: Ponderosa Forest, Mixed Conifer Forest, Burn Area, Aspen Grove, Sagebrush

Directions: From Gunnison, go west on US 50 to CO 149. Turn left (south) onto CO 149, heading towards Lake City. Between mile posts 97 & 96, turn right (north) at the top of the hill onto Sapinero Mesa Road (CR 26). This is the best ponderosa stand in the area and the most accessible. It can be walked for miles on the eastern side.

Delorme: 68 B1
Roads of Colorado: 116 A1

Dates of Access: Road closed in winter, and sometimes in spring
Hours: Any
Ownership: BLM
Admission: Free

Restrictions: Beware poor road conditions, especially after snow or rain
Parking: Roadside
Lodging: Campgrounds in Curecanti National Recreation Area or hotels in Gunnison

Handicapped: No
Handicapped Access: Some viewing from car

Latitude: 38.280669
Longitude: -107.176303

Amenities

RestroomsNo
Drinking FountainNo
Gravel TrailsNo
Paved TrailsNo
Platform/BlindNo
BoardwalkNo
ConcessionNo
Visitor CenterNo
Gift ShopNo
PrimitiveYes
Camping
Picnic
HuntingYes
FishingNo