Fall Hiking in Summit County
This post is a sampling of options and my opinion on what just may be the Best Trails to See Aspen Trees near Breckenridge. After a summer full of rain, the fall colors in Breckenridge have arrived later than usual. I first moved to the high country in 1995 and have noticed that the fall colors tend to peak around the middle of September each year.
The leaves are not guaranteed to peak at that time, and several weather factors and events can play into their longevity and brilliance. For example, one year an early snowstorm fell for a few days and the majority of the leaves turned brown and dropped rather quickly.
This summer the rain fell a lot and the leaves have slowly turned yellow, behind their normal pace. I’m not exactly sure of the science behind why that is, but it is early October now and the colors are still spectacular. And, we have haven’t had any major weather events to hasten or expedite the color change.
Regardless, I’m writing this blog, noticing our web traffic has increased on an older blog, Aspen Trees in Breckenridge, Colorado, and thought it was time for an updated blog that shows off some of my newer pics and videos.
Best Trails to See Aspen Trees near Breckenridge
I’ll do a quick summary and work off the original list I posted about. You can expect many trail users along the way as you explore the forest. Please be alert, as mountain bikers or fast runners could be coming down hill and around blind corners at any moment. Take the ten essentials for any outdoor outing in the high country terrain. Ready for the suggestions? Ok, here they are.
Boreas Pass Road and Aspen Alley
These two fall classics are the top two in this line up. And, they will be busy. Start your day at the Breckenridge Troll, Isak Heartstone, near the Stephen C. West Ice Arena and Rotary Snowplow Train Park. Take your pics with the troll and get back in the car and take a drive up the old railroad line that is now Boreas Pass Road. You’ll pass the trailhead parking (another great hiking option, but not so many aspen on that section as Aspen Alley) and after a short drive, you’ll arrive in a spectacular setting of panoramic views of the Ten Mile Range, a fabulous tunnel of aspens, and you can continue to the summit of Boreas for a few moments in the alpine. Aspen Alley is gorgeous and you can watch a video below.
A new reroute climbs the north face of the hill side and is quite rocky and includes some advanced terrain, meaning high steps in spots that may require the use of hands and feet at the same time. Once you arrive at the top, you will be able to enjoy almost 360 degree views of the surrounding area. To the south is the Blue River valley towards Hoosier Pass, Baldy Mountain to the east, the Breckenridge Ski Resort and Ten Mile Range to the west and to the Williams Fork Valley to the north.
Drive south of Breckenridge and arrive at Hoosier Pass, and you’ll have passed Quandary Peak, a 14er (14,265 foot peak) and will have a few choices to explore fall views from an alpine perspective. For something different, keep going south to explore the towns of Alma and Fairplay. Look for Otto’s food cart in Alma, or continue on to explore the eateries near historic South Park City, like Casa Sanchez.
For a quick and easy access walk around historic buildings and trees, the Lomax Placer Mine Site has some old cabins. You can find it right off of Ski Hill Road, just past the skiers bridge that crosses overhead. There is a parking lot for easy access too. Park and take some nice pics with the family!
French Gulch Trails
Drive up Wellington Road from Main St., and take the right when the road forks. Continue past the Country Boy Mine and choose between three trailheads, the B&B, the Reiling Dredge and the Sallie Barber Mine. Numerous loops, out and backs and connections offer multiple options for leaf peepers.
Fall Hikes around Lake Dillon
Seeing the water and trees together is a special treat and one easier hike is the Old Dillon Reservoir, right off of the Dillon Dam Road. Also, look up the Frisco Peninsula trails , Rainbow Lake and the Dillon Nature Preserve for airy views across the lake.
Lily Pad Lake Trail
The parking is on a frontage road near the eastern Frisco I-70 roundabout on/off ramp, and that leads up and through some tall and amazing aspens where you can arrive at a family favorite, Lily Pad Lake.
Take the right fork towards the Gondola parking lot at the Keystone Resort and head up Montezuma Road for a scenic drive up to quirky and colorful town of Montezuma. Lots of aspen trees line the drive that some opt to bike instead of drive. Jeeps and OHVs park at the far end of town and continue up to higher alpine roads that criss cross the landscape.
Other Fall Leaf Peeping Around Colorado
Over the years we’ve spent some time driving around and have been lucky to see fall colors in other places outside of Summit County. Here’s a sampling of adventures that await you, your friends and family.
- Kebler Pass
- Estes Park
- Maroon Bells
- Twin Lakes / Leadville
- Kenosha Pass
Contact us with Trip Planning and Mountain Habitat Searching
If you’ve found this blog, chances are you’re planning a trip to the Breckenridge area. There’s a ton of information online these days, but feel free to use the contact form below to send us a message about any trails you see in the blog or elsewhere.
We are also Breckenridge Real Estate and Property specialists that help families find the perfect property to call home, and to be able to spend time in the mountains. Make memories in the aspen trees, on the slopes and around the various towns of Summit County, Colorado.