When trail blazers turn into leaf peepers.
When one thinks of colorful Colorado, they typically see visions of purple mountains, blue skies, green pines, and fluffy white snow. But each autumn, we’re on the hunt for the warmer, vibrant colors of changing foliage.
Driving up windy mountain passes in September and October, it’s impossible to miss and not be mesmerized by the bright gradients of yellows and reds. As one of the largest homes of aspen trees in the U.S., Colorado mountains are covered with golden aspen leaves each autumn. Flashes of deep oranges and red colors are also scattered through forested areas on leaves of Bigtooth or Wasatch maples, medium-sized Colorado-native trees.
While there are many ways to experience the colors of fall, including trotting through trees on horseback or soaring above meadows on a zip line, the easiest and one of the most peaceful activities is setting out for a fresh-air hike.
Starting out with an easy hike in our natural landscapes, Double Pole is an out-and-back trail on the south side of our property that offers picnic tables about 1 mile in to stop and enjoy the scenery.
Friends trail is a longer, moderate loop off of Blue Extra which begins from our ridgetop of log cabins. For advanced hikers that wish to extend even further for more of a challenge, Marker Hill can be taken from Friends. While the terrain and elevation will be more difficult, we assure you the views from Vista Point will be well worth it!
Close to the Grand Lake entrance to Rocky Mountain National Park, the Ranch also highly encourages guests to experience fall foliage throughout the third most visited national park in the country. In addition to the stunning colors, elk bugling also takes place in autumn, and the park is a popular place for wildlife. You may encounter up to hundreds of elk at a time gathering amidst mountain scenery to perform their mating calls that echo throughout the valleys and canyons.
It’s no wonder we say ‘it’s the season we fall for.’ But don’t just take our word for it. Experience autumn in the Rockies for yourself!