Autumn is arguably the most spectacular season in Colorado, with snow dusted mountains rising above vast forests of golden aspens. In my opinion walking through a grove of golden quaking aspens is one of nature's most beautiful experiences, like entering a natural cathedral with sacred light. Each aspen bole has sprouted from the same connected root system of a larger organism, meaning that an individual aspen "tree" is actually a grove that may cover many acres and may be thousands or perhaps even hundreds of thousands of years old. These are the largest organisms on the planet, and certainly amongst the most beautiful.
While aspen forests are spread across the mountains of Colorado, two favorite fall locations are the San Juan Mountains near Telluride and Ridgway in the southwest corner of the state, as well as the Elk Mountains near Crested Butte and Aspen. Like annual clockwork - the grand finale marking the end of summer and onset of winter - the aspens typically start turning yellow around mid-September, usually peak around the start of October, then by mid-October the leaves have blown away.