Fall at Ruby Peak – A fall evening at Ruby Peak in the central Colorado Rocky Mountains. This area is loaded with photo opportunities which all can be found along county road 12 that runs between Crested Butte and Paonia State Park (Hwy 133). Not only will you find 17 continuous miles of aspen trees, but you also get the Beckwith Mountains, Kebler Pass, Marcellina Mountain, Lake Irwin and Lost Lake campground (the last two are just a couple of miles off road 12). Fall colors usually start appearing halfway through September, and can last into early October. Fair warning – this road can get very muddy so be prepared for some slick messy conditions in the rain.
w/ Nikkor 80-200mm lens
ISO-800, 1/500s, f/11, 135mm
Photo taken on 10/11/2014
The hauntingly beautiful interior of Bishop Castle in Rye, Colorado. A one-man stone and iron project that has been under construction for 40 years. A unique and must-see place if you love quirky roadside attractions. Be cautious, however, that there are uneven steps, open windows and slip and trip hazards everywhere, so it's not safe for small children, nor is it accessible for anyone with mobility issues. For more info on this interesting place check out the listing in Wikipedia.
Fairy Trumpet Flower – A macro shot of one of the many Red Fairy Trumpet flowers growing along highway 12 heading east on the way up to Kebler Pass. These flowers are a favorite of humming birds, and usually bloom in the high country from July to early September.
w/ Tamron 70-300mm lens (macro)
ISO-800, 1/125s, f/18, 300mm (macro)
Photo taken on 07/10/2010
Aspen Leaf in Transition – Not all aspen put on the usual gold coat for fall. Some will appear as orange, or even red. This closeup shot caught one of the rarer red aspen in md-transition. You can see the green chlorophyll fading away to reveal the fall colors as the leaves prepare to drop for winter.
w/ Tamron 70-300MM lens
ISO-1250, 1/500s, f/5.6, 190mm
Photo taken on 09/26/2008
Waterfall on Colorado 133 – A small waterfall on the roadside along Colorado highway 133 (just pass mile marker 49) on the way up to McClure Pass. Like many of the smaller waterfalls in the Colorado Rocky Mountains, this one dries up later in the summer after the snow melt has finished higher up on the peaks.
w/ Nikkor 18-105mm lens
ISO-200, 1/3s, f/29, 42mm
Photo taken on 06/14/2010
Cataract Creek – The winter of 2015 was very snowy one in Colorado and the spring melt found most rivers running full and fast. Cataract Creek was no exception as can be seen in this midday photo taken just above Lower Cataract Lake. Ironically, this image was actually taken on the last day of Spring, and the water was still running this high! The more adventurous can use the unseen trail to the left to follow the river to a few small waterfalls a little further upstream.
To get to Lower Cataract lake trail, take road 1725 west from Heeney, CO (along highway 30 by Green Mountain Reserviour)
w/ Nikkor 16-35mm lens
ISO-50, 1/4s, f/14, 16mm
Photo taken on 06/20/2015
Moss under Maroon Lake – When conditions are right in the waters of Maroon Lake (near the Maroon Bells), bright green moss will cover the lake bed in the shallows by the early fall. I have only seen it this bright and thick just twice over the last 15 years. The underwater log in the shot has been there as long as I have been coming up to this location. It provides a good example of how slowly things decay in the cold waters of high altitude mountain lakes.
w/ Tamron 70-300mm lens
ISO-800, 1/160s, f/13, 130mm
Photo taken on 09/25/2008
Winters are usually really hard for me. Anyone that’s lived through winters in the Midwest is sure to understand; our winters are 6-7 months long, grey, cold, and icy. I lucked out this winter, as I landed a work trade internship in Maui and was gone from November to mid-February. I spent a few days in Fort Collins before returning to Cleveland, but from mid-February to just a few days ago, I was back living in the Midwest. Even in those two months, I felt winter weighing heavy on me. I’m prone to depression and anxiety, and a lack of sunshine and warmth affects this.
I was, however, fortunate to be able to come back to Colorado to see @charlieich and his family at #LostValleyRanch , located in Sedalia, Colorado (which is in central Colorado, nestled comfortably in the Rocky Mountains, near #PikeNationalForest .) This experience affected me in a way I didn’t foresee. Blue skies, mountains all around me, ample hiking trails, horseback riding through the mountains, gentile hospitality and kindness from literally every person I met (I kid ye not). In short, Colorado won me over.
For someone who always thought she had to live near large bodies of water to be happy, it came as a surprise to be so intoxicated by the dry beauty of the Southwest. And on top of that, to be won over by a state in my least favorite season is a HUGE thing. I can’t wait to see what my new home looks like in the seasons to come. //
Moonlight on the Bells!
This isn’t your typical shot of the Marron Bells. This photo was taken only using the light of the full moon! You can tell from the stars in the sky and the blurred clouds which moved a little during the long exposure. Since moonlight is just reflected sunlight, you can take what will look like a daylight photo just by using a longer exposure. You’ll need a tripod, and a camera capable of taking a 30+ second exposure at a high ISO. It also helps to have no wind as it will cause anything in the foreground to blur when it is moved by the breeze. When done correctly, it can give a very surreal look to a photo. DM me for additional hints on how to take moonlight photos!
w/ 24-70mm lens
ISO-2000, 20s, f/5.6, 40mm
Photo taken on 09/16/2016
So grateful that I had the opportunity to come see my boyfriend and meet his family in person. Those three days were everything I needed in my life. I got to experience new things and new places, and by the sheer kindness and hospitality of #lostvalleyranch , I was able to enjoy my time there in the utmost comfort in my own cabin. Thank you LVL! Also, Charlie paired me with the chillest of bay babes and I bonded immediately. Trixie was the best. She deserves all the apples and neck pets.🐴
I know I’ve said this a million times, but due to recent events, I want to re-emphasize how much I love Colorado and how much I look forward to moving out there. I have a newfound sense of wonder and respect for the southwest, and I look forward to exploring more of it in the years to come. Fingers crossed, I’ll be packing up my bags (and probably a truck) for good and moving out west in the next 6-8 months. Less than a year away! I get excited just thinking about the possibility. 🤞🏼
Anyways, I just wanna say how much I admire my boyfriend @charlieich. Charlie, you pursued what made the most sense to you, what you loved, and I’m proud of you for taking that tough step. When I saw you last week, I saw how well you meshed with your surroundings, I saw you so happy. That makes me happy. I hope you find what you’re looking for. I hope you continue to pursue what you love and what makes you feel alive, and you do so unabashedly.
Thank you @outdoorszy for getting at least one photo of us together. 😄 Also thanks for inviting me out and making this happen. I’m so glad I finally had the opportunity to meet you and Jim in person. //
Hard to believe we're less than 6 months away from scenes like this. This view through the fall aspen trees is at the base of Carbon Peak on the road up to Ohio Pass. This area is filled with aspen groves and is located in the central Colorado Rocky Mountains about 20 miles North of Gunnison on Ohio Creek Rd (730). Shot Details:
ISO-400, 1/500s, f/6.3, 200mm
Photo taken on 09/25/2008
If you live or do business in Central Colorado, please earmark some charitable dollars for these folks! Happy to consider them friends of Buy Land America •
Caught this sunrise over Blue Mesa Reservoir while out on a fall leaf expedition. Blue Mesa Reservoir is located in Central Colorado about 10 miles West of Gunnison along State Highway 50. It is part of the Curecanti National Recreation Area which offers many camping, boating, and fishing opportunities year round.
w/ Nikkor 70-200mm lens
ISO-400, 1/60s, f/9, 70mm
Photo taken on 09/30/2015
Here’s a fun example of one of the fall Mash-ups that can be found all over the Colorado Rocky Mountains. This one happened to be under some aspens at McClure pass in Central Colorado. With so many types of plants changing to different colors at different times, scenes like this can be found through most of the fall.
w/ Nikkor 70-300mm lens
ISO-200, 1/20s, f/16, 70mm
Photo taken on 09/28/2007
Grabbed this closeup shot of a pair of fall aspen leaves near Maroon Bells in Central Colorado. The dark background in the shot is actually just the valley in the distance which was still deep in shadow during the early morning.
w/ Nikkor 18-200mm lens
ISO-400, 1/500s, f/18, 200mm
Photo taken on 9/25/2008
The white bark and dark "eyes" of aspen tree trunks along McClure Pass in the Central colorado Rocky Mountains. Kind of makes me think of Zebra "spots" instead of stripes. It's hard to find pristine tree trunks along the roadside since so many people think they have the right to leave their mark while they're "visiting". 👎😡 Shot Details:
w/ Quantaray 70-300mm lens
ISO-400, 1/200s, f/11, 200mm
Photo taken on 6/14/2010
Nothing like a few raindrops on a fall aspen leaf to bring it to life. Found this one on a gravel path in the Silver Queen campground near Maroon Bells in central Colorado.
w/Quantaray 70-300mm Macro lens
ISO-200, 1/100s, f/9, 200mm
Photo taken on 9/28/2007
Fall aspen reflections in Rowdy Lake located just off forest road 858 in southwest Colorado. The reflection took on the look of a painting with the help of dozens of tiny fish that kept creating ripples while nipping at food on the water's surface.
w/ Nikkor 80-200mm macro zoom
ISO-800, 1/400s, f/9, 200mm (macro)
Photo taken on 9/26/2009
A fall morning closeup of a mountain dandelion (salsify) near Maroon Bells in the Central Colorado Rocky Mountains. The dark background was courtesy of a hillside across the valley where the sun had not yet risen high enough to shine on it.
w/ Tamron 70-300mm macro zoom
ISO-1250, 1/500s, f/18, 170mm (macro)
Photo taken on 9/25/2008