Colorful Colorado Scenic Drives
It’s leaf peeping season! Fall Color Drives get you closer to nature and crisp mountain air.
The Peak-to-Peak scenic and historic byway starts in Boulder and offers unparalleled views of the Continental Divide and dramatic fall colors. Thought he byway is less than 60 miles in length, there are plenty of places and take in the views including Rocky Mountain National Park, Golden Gate Canyon State Park, the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests, and the Indian Peaks Wilderness Area.
Catch the free gondola to gain a perfect vantage point for viewing the fall colors in this picturesque town and surrounding canyons and valleys. If you prefer to keep your feet on the ground, there are multiple options for hiking and taking in the scenery including the Jud Wiebe Trail, a 3-mile loop that winds through large aspen groves and passes by Comet Falls.
LA VETA PASS
At an altitude of more than 9,400 feet at the peak, La Veta Pass on U.S. Route 160 is one of the most scenic drives in the state during the fall season. Golden aspens stand proud with dark green pine tress against a backdrop of Spanish Peaks and Sangre de Cristo Mountains.
TRAIL RIDGE ROAD
The highest continuous paved road in North America winds through Rocky Mountain National Park from Estes Park to Grand Lake. With more than 8 miles above 11,000 feet and a maximum elevation of 12,183 feet, Trail Ridge Road is an amazing point for those seeking a spectacular show of fall colors and is a favored spot for photographers.
Located just southwest of Aspen, these iconic peaks are the perfect pairing when fall colors are ablaze. Check shuttle bus schedules that leave from Aspen to take visitors to the site or reserve a campsite along Maroon Creek Road.
GRAND JUNCTION TO GRAND MESA
This drive will produce stands of changing aspens as well as cottonwood trees along the Colorado River. From Grand Junction, go east and then south through the canyons before reaching Grand Mesa at the top, where the views are spectacular.
From Crested Butte, go west on County Road 12 and feast your eyes on the abundance of autumn colors against the Ruby Range. At Colorado 133, you can go north toward McClure Pass for more leaf peeping.
THE SAN JUAN SKYWAY
This breathtaking 236-mile loop through the San Juan Mountains offers visitors an amazing display of fall colors and includes a 70-mile stretch know famously as the Million Dollar Highway. The Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad also offers rides for a different perspective.
A FEW OTHER ROUTES:
- Gold Camp Road from Colorado Springs to Victor and then Colorado 67 through Cripple Creek north to Divide
- US 285 from Conifer to Fairplay
- Top of the Rockies scenic and historic byway which takes you from US 24 from Minturn through Leadville to Twin Lakes via Colorado 82, and back to Colorado 91 over Fremont Pass to Copper Mountain
For maps and directions, visit the Colorado Department of Transportation website.
If you make it along one of these drives, take a picture or two and share your adventure with us! https://cobbteamcolo.com/contact/
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Colorful Colorado Scenic Drives
American Lifestyle Magazine
Photo by Lydia Torrey
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