Fall in Southwest Colorado

Fall 2022 Travels
Cumbres and Toltec Railroad
Northern New Mexico
Fall in Southwest Colorado

Fall is my favorite season in Colorado and the southwest region of the state is my favorite area in Colorado. Put the two together and it’s, like, really my favorite. Or maybe my favorite-squared? Sorry, I’ll stop.

Seriously, though, southwest Colorado has everything I want for fall photography. Of course, there are the aspen trees, but also big mountains, remnants of mining, and red-colored mountains that pop against both the yellow aspens and blue skies.

There is a ton of hiking, but also enough scenic drives* that you never have to leave the road to get great views. If the weather turns, you have several small towns – Ouray, Silverton, Ridgway, and others – to retreat to for food and coffee.

This year I was in the area for maybe only 48 hours, but took as many photos as I sometimes do on trips of a week or more. I couldn’t help but share more than usual today.

*Here is a short movie clip of the drive from this trip, taken from my dashcam and lightly edited via WeVideo. I think I’ll be sticking with photography rather than videography, but it’s a fun toy on long road trips. 

Ridgway at sunset from an elevated position
From Ridgway at sunset, which was some of the most beautiful light I’d ever seen in the valley.
A red mountain with aspens and snow.
Red Mountain (No. 3, I think).
An old mining structure in the aspens.
No shortage of old mining structures dotted throughout the landscape.
An old cabin in the mountains with yellow aspens.
An old cabin, visible from the main road, that I always stop and photograph when I drive by. 
Owl Creek Pass area.
The drive through Owl Creek Pass.
Aspens on the Million Dollar Highway
Trees at peak color, fresh snow from the night before, and sunlight. Just about perfect. I mean, if I were to be picky, I’d want a little more blue sky (but not too much) :).
Aspens and a snowcapped peak.
Aspens and more aspens.
Aspens and mountains.
Million dollar views from the Million Dollar Highway (550).
A rainbow above the yellow aspen trees.
Perhaps the largest pot of gold at the end of a rainbow there has been.
An old ore cart suspended on a cable overlooking Silverton.
Looking past the old ore carts from the Mayflower Mill and towards Silverton.
Old ore carts suspended on a cable over the valley going to the Mayflower mine..
The old tramway, still standing (mostly) today.
A road winds into Silverton, Colorado.
The San Juan Country Courthouse in Silverton on a rainy afternoon.
A tall spire catching some rays of the rising sun.
Owl Creek Pass area with a hint of sunlight.
A mountain in clouds with aspens in front.
I had a lot of rain, but the moments in between could be incredible.
Mountains in the clearing fog.
Silver Jack Reservoir area.
Changing light and clouds over the mountains.
The light seemed to change by the second.
A fence and archway entering into private property with the mountains in the background.
Not in the southwest, but a detour I took along my drive to scout some new areas.

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