• Activities:

    Chillin, Photography, Hiking

  • Skill Level:

    Beginner

  • Season:

    Autumn

Forest
Scenic

Fall colors at their finest. See the largest grove of aspens on earth. Avoid the crowds (sorf of).

Kebler Pass, or Gunnison County Road (GCR) 12, is an excellent place to see fall colors in Colorado. You won't get nearly as much congestion as on Independence Pass in Aspen, but you get just as many yellow and amber leaves. The road is dirt but passable by any vehicle–although because it's at over 10,000 feet–it's closed in winter and can get extremely muddy if it snows or rains. The mud is slick. You'll want a 4WD vehicle, and boots for all weather if you're going to be stopping along the way to take photos.

Your jaw will start dropping as you take McClure Pass, just after the small town of Redstone. Follow 133 all the way over and just past Paonia State Park. You'll take a left on GCR 12 for 30 miles of incredible views, winding up right in downtown Crested Butte.

Pack List

  • 4WD car (high clearance ideal but not necessary)
  • Camera and photography gear
  • Hiking boots for stops along the way
  • Snacks
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Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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Make sure you go no later than the end of September or the beginning of October! The colors can fade quickly with the cold temperatures that are frequently here early in the fall.

about 2 years ago
about 2 years ago

Give yourself at least a long weekend here to explore all the photographic possibilities for sunrise and sunset. This location is major chunk of my Colorado Fall Colors eBook guide.

over 2 years ago
over 2 years ago

The aspens groves on this drive are some of the biggest in Colorado. Make sure you time your trip for peak colors, this usually starts the last week of September until early October.

over 2 years ago
over 2 years ago

Are we missing something? Suggest an edit

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