The month of September is the ideal time to view gorgeous Rocky Mountain fall color, but you have to time it right — the color is fleeting, lasting only about a week in most places. Unfortunately, it’s difficult to predict when exactly the leaves will turn in any given location. The best strategy: select your travel dates in advance, but not your destination. Then do your research and go where the color is. The Rocky Mountain Region of the National Forest Service is not reporting any fall color from any forest or grassland yet. However, the Forest Service website posts information on fall color information from 17 national forests and 7 national grasslands, and is updated weekly. If you’re planning a color tour, check there for current, reliable fall foliage information.
One favorite route for a local color tour is to take Guanella Pass Scenic and Historic Byway south out of the town of Georgetown. You’ll not only find pockets of breathtaking aspen but high-altitude nirvana atop the 11,699-foot pass. The aspens are more prevalent on the southern side of the pass. Once you reach the town of Grant, turn right on US 285 and take the highway for 15 minutes to the top of Kenosha Pass, where the aspen thrive on the rim of the slopes encircling South Park.