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Great Spots for Leaf Peeping

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Gold season in Telluride is one of the best times of the year, with stunning mountain backdrops covered in gold and orange hues. The gold rush has just begun and we are probably a week and a half from peek colors.

Some trees in town have already donned their vibrant fall colors but many of the aspen groves nestled into the mountains are just starting to transform. The leaves have changed a lot this past week as you can see from the photo taken below off the Jud Wiebe trail. 

 Here are some of our favorite spots to see the color.

The Gondola

Our beloved gondola—the first and only free public transportation system of its kind in the United States—offers 360 degree views of Telluride and Mountain Village. Look down on the valley of Telluride, or over towards the infamous Wilson range, and you are sure to see miles and miles of fall foliage. You can also use it as an access point to the many hiking and biking trails on the ski resort.

Sneffles Highline Trail

This trail, a 14 mile loop, is ranked as rather difficult. The beauty of the fall colors proves as an easy distraction while hiking though. View Mt. Sneffles, a fourteener, and all the colors that surround it. This mountain is a photographer favorite during the fall season. Learn more about how to access the trial

Woods Lake

A great destination for taking a nice afternoon drive or as a starting point for a hike, Woods Lake is a great place to enjoy a fall afternoon! Pack a picnic and enjoy the crisp air around the lake. The scenery is literally jaw-dropping. Go for a leisurely stroll, or attempt the 8-mile loop around the lake. If you are feeling extra adventurous, hike Najavo Lake.

Trout Lake

Head south on Highway 145 for about 25 minutes and you will see Trout Lake on your left. From here you have sweeping views of the Blackface Ridge, Pilot Knob, Goldenhorn, Vermilion Peak and Sheep Mountain. Head up earlier in the Gold Season (early to mid September), as the colors turn faster.

Last Dollar Road/Pass

If you want a quick look of the valley holding Telluride, as well as the landscape of Mountain Village, drive up the Airport Road. Pull over at any point, and look behind you to see the stunning beauty that is Telluride. Keep going and drive over Last Dollar Road (stay to your right where the road forks), and experience breathtaking views of Wilson Peak, or the historic ranch from the original “True Grit” featuring John Wayne. Four-wheel drive is not required, but we would recommend it.

Happy leaf peeping and don't forget the camera!


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