It's that time of the year when the air gets a little crisp, the air conditioning doesn't kick on quite as often, football season has started and baseball fans are eagerly waiting for the playoffs. And with all this comes the annual changing of foliage colors.
I just returned from a trip to the Fairplay area, and the fall colors change is well underway.
I've written in previous blogs about where to shoot fall colors
, and also some tips on how to take good fall colors photos
so this will just be a bit of an update.
Along with all the places I've mentioned in previous blogs, other great locations for fall colors are Kenosha Pass (Hwy 285 north of Fairplay), Weston Pass (between Hwy 285 and US 24.Access it just south of Fairplay), Guanella Pass that connects Georgetown to US 285 near Bailey, and also Kebler Pass.
Kebler Pass connects Crested Butte and Paonia in central Colorado, but periodic road closures for construction near the Crested Butte end during September will make access from the Paonia side the way to go. Check cotrip.org
before you go to check for road closures. Guanella and Kebler Passes are doable with almost any vehicle, depending on recent weather. The east side of Weston Pass is pretty vehicle-friendly, but you'll need a bit of ground clearance (think Subaru Outback or better) if you're continuing onto the west side. Kenosha Pass is on Hwy 285 and is easily accessible by anyone.
Closer to home, Horsethief Park (FS Trail 704), off of the Horsethief Falls trail (FS Trail 704A) just before it intersects with the Pancake Rocks trail, promises to have nice color. Horsethief Park is about a mile wide, and the largest gathering of aspens starts about half way into it. You can also access Horsethief Park from the trailhead at the end of the road, about a mile past the Crags Trail, but you'll have to hike several miles to get to the park itself.
Other popular places for fall colors may be inaccessible during prime fall colors season. The popular Seven Bridges Trail may be closed by the Forest Service while trail work is going on above the trail, and Mt Herman Road will be closed for road work to all traffic and uses, including hiking, cycling, etc. starting on September 14th.
Happy Trails and take great pictures!
Bob Falcone is a retired firefighter, photographer, hiker, college instructor, business owner and author of Hiking Bob's Tips, Tricks and Trails, available via his website. He has lived in Colorado Springs for over 24 years. Follow him on Twitter (@hikingbob), Facebook (Hiking Bob), Instagram (@HikingBob_CO) or visit his website (Hikingbob.com). E-mail questions, comments, suggestions, etc to Bob: firstname.lastname@example.org.