In my last blog I listed my favorite hikes in the Colorado Springs area
, and since this is still the “list” season, I'm making another for my favorite nature and landscape photography locations. I’ve covered much of this in other blogs,
but now they’re all in one place.
Favorite places for wild flower photos:
Shrine Mountain, near Vail. Off of Vail Pass on I-70, Shrine Mountain is an easy hike rewarded with great swaths of wildflowers. Best done in late July to early August, this is a must do for great wildflower pictures. Bring your insect spray!
If traveling a few hours for some pictures doesn’t fit your plans, Red Rocks Canyon Open Space offers a wide variety of flower, especially prickly pear cactus blossoms, goat’s beard and Mariposa Lilies. Flowers start appearing around Memorial Day.
Favorite places for fall foliage photos:
Without a doubt, one of the best places for fall colors photos is Kenosha Pass on Highway 285 approximately two hours west of Colorado Springs. As a bonus, the Colorado Trail traverses the area, giving one the choice of hiking, photography, or both.
Colorado Highway 12, through the town of Cuchara, is another consistent place for great fall colors photos, and there are plenty of trails and campgrounds in the area. If you want a real challenge, turn east on to Cordova Pass from the top of Cuchara Pass. At the top of the Pass, you can hike to the summit of the nearly 14,000’ West Spanish Peak. This hike will take most of the day, so plan accordingly.
Favorite place for alpine lake photos:
By far my favorite hike of 2015, Music Pass and the Sand Creek Lakes offers spectacular views, and the Upper Sand Creek Lake, while small in size, is visually stunning. Getting there isn’t easy — the final three miles to the trailhead is a tough and bumpy four-wheel-drive road, and the hike from the trailhead to the Upper Sand Creek Lake and back is approximately 11 miles. You’ve really got to want it — and it’s worth it.
Favorite place for winter snow photos:
Some of the nicest winter photos can be taken right here in our own North Cheyenne Cañon Park. Whether along North Cheyenne Creek or from overlooks on Gold Camp Road, or on the Seven Bridges Trail, there a lots of places to get great winter photos and all while not having to leave Colorado Springs.
So there you have it. I’m sure I’ve forgotten a place or two, and you likely have your own favorites. If you want to share your favorites, leave a comment on my Facebook page.
Happy Holidays and Happy Trails!
Bob Falcone is a retired firefighter, photographer, hiker, college instructor and business owner who has lived in Colorado Springs for over 24 years. He is the president of the Friends of Cheyenne Canon and a member of the El Paso County Parks Advisory Board. You can follow him on Twitter (@hikingbob), Facebook (Hiking Bob), or visit his website (Hikingbob.com). E-mail questions, comments, suggestions, etc to Bob: firstname.lastname@example.org.