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Aspens & 14ers

Colorado 14er peak questions and conditions should be posted here. 14er Trip Reports
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Aspens & 14ers

Postby CaptPenner » Fri Sep 21, 2012 9:52 pm

Hey everyone,

I usually get to Colorado to hike at the end of July or first of August. However, I was flying over the area to day at 39,000 and saw all the Aspens with a low sunset lighting them up! WOW!! I thought I may try to head out there later next year (around this time of the year) to try and catch the Aspens changing and get a 14er or two in at the same time. Which 14ers have the most Aspens around, or are best for Aspen color viewing?

Thanks
Scott

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Re: Aspens & 14ers

Postby jaymz » Fri Sep 21, 2012 10:01 pm

The standard route up Shavano starts through a nice Aspen grove. I imagine you can't really go wrong with much of the Sawatch.
If you just want to see Aspens and not necessarily hike through them, Guanella Pass from Georgetown is a classic Aspen drive, and the Bierstadt TH is right there at the top of the pass.
EDIT: I typed the original message from my phone, so I wasn't able to see that you had already summited Bierstadt :)
Last edited by jaymz on Sat Sep 22, 2012 10:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Aspens & 14ers

Postby CaptPenner » Fri Sep 21, 2012 10:05 pm

I bagged 'B' this year, but didn't get the Sawtooth to Evans. Maybe that will be the plan next year! Thanks

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Re: Aspens & 14ers

Postby sunny1 » Fri Sep 21, 2012 10:06 pm

Sneffels, any of the Wilson group, the Maroons, Capitol, the East Ridge of Elbert.
Agree with Shavano, lots of aspen around the beginning of the trail - tho haven't seen it in the fall.
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Re: Aspens & 14ers

Postby Tornadoman » Sat Sep 22, 2012 3:21 am

I am sure that MANY of them are nice this time of year. My wife and I thought they were quite nice on Antero... here is a trip report from our Monday climb with some pictures. http://14ers.com/php14ers/tripreport.php?trip=12903&start=15&cpgm=tripmain&ski=Include

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Re: Aspens & 14ers

Postby aliciaf » Sat Sep 22, 2012 9:46 am

I did Elbert via the East Ridge last October and the trail starts out in a beautiful Aspen forest.

This year I did Redcloud/Sunshine and Handies in the San Juans and the trees on the access road to the Silver Creek TH and in the beginning of the trail were gorgeous.

I'm sure many of the 14ers have great fall colors this time of year. One I can say that doesn't is Longs. I was there on Wednesday and there were hardly any Aspen trees in the forest.
Last edited by aliciaf on Sun Sep 23, 2012 9:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Aspens & 14ers

Postby oldschoolczar » Sat Sep 22, 2012 10:15 am

La Plata was good for the first part of the hike last weekend. You walk right through a little Aspen forest.. got some good pics.
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Re: Aspens & 14ers

Postby JosephG » Sat Sep 22, 2012 3:40 pm

+1 on LaPlata (from Winfield). Belford/Oxford/Missouri have plenty, too.

When I did LaPlata a few years ago, there was a a carpet of yellow and a tunnel of orange and yellow leaves.

Aspens along 390 are popping right now.

Also, the loooong drive to San Luis goes through numerous groves.

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Re: Aspens & 14ers

Postby rocky » Sat Sep 22, 2012 10:14 pm

Those are all great suggestions for areas to visit if you want to climb and view the incredible fall colors. How neat that you got to see it from the air. Were you able to get any photos?

If you aren't planning to be here this year, here is a good link to look at as you plan your visit: http://www.parks.state.co.us/Pages/Fall.aspx

The colors are really popping down in the SW part of the state right now, but everything seems to be a bit early this year (likely due to the prolonged drought periods). Remember that heavy rain or wind and/or an early snowstorm can strip everything quickly.

Here's a link to a story on a Denver TV channel: http://denver.cbslocal.com/2012/09/17/aspens-changing-a-week-or-two-early-in-high-country-this-year/ If you are going to wait until the last moment to book your flight, you should keep checking the Denver TV station websites. They really like to keep people updated on the peak viewing opportunities.

On a personal note: The best part of running this time of the year is the crazy kaleidoscopic carpet on the trails!!
rocky
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Re: Aspens & 14ers

Postby rocky » Sat Sep 22, 2012 10:38 pm

Scott,

Here is the link to 9News's Fall Colors page: http://www.9news.com/weather/outdoors/fall_colors/default.aspx
rocky
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Re: Aspens & 14ers

Postby CaptPenner » Sun Sep 23, 2012 1:55 pm

Rocky, Thanks for the links, those are great. A photo would not have done it justice, just took a mental photo and continued eastbound.

Sunny, is Holy Cross the only one you have left? You have been a busy little hiker. Uncompahgre with you and your husband is still my favorite climb. Thanks for the recommendations.

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Re: Aspens & 14ers

Postby godsnthemtns » Sun Sep 23, 2012 3:24 pm

+1 la Plata

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