Fall is in the air! Leaves are changing to dazzling yellow, crimson red and pumpkin orange. It is one of the best times of the year for hiking. With fewer people, virtually no insects and cooler temperatures it is the time to get out and experience the great outdoors. You’ll get a new and fresh perspective on everything you see.
Hiking in Colorado’s mountains during the fall offers a spectacular display with streaks of yellow painted on slopes of velvet evergreen. There is a chill in the crisp pine scented air and you are one of the only people on the trail. A few things to remember before venturing out this time of year are the days are shorter so don’t get stuck out in the wilderness when darkness falls, it’s a bit cooler in general especially in the mornings and early evenings so dress warmly and in layers. Just because it may be a bit cooler don’t forget water, even if you don’t feel thirsty, drink plenty of water while hiking. I strongly recommend a hydration pack for any hike over 3-4 miles to provide adequate water while hiking. Another great fall hiking tip is to wear a hiking pant that has zip off legs. You can start off wearing long pants since it will be pretty cool and then as the day wears on you can zip the legs off and voila, you have shorts!
Don’t miss this spectacular time of year in the Colorado Rockies when you can truly enjoy stunning scenery, vacant hotel rooms and very few people.
Another great benefit of hiking in the fall is visiting the Colorado mountain towns such as Durango, Ouray and Silverton because you have the run of the town in many cases and rates for hotels if you stay overnight are reduced from the high summer rates. A drive on the San Juan Skyway between Durango and Ouray will give you big fall color and if there is a slight breeze the Aspen leaves will make it appear as if the whole mountain side is in motion. If it’s peace and serenity you’re after, visit most any small Colorado mountain town in the fall. So, don’t put away the boots, the pack or the maps just yet, there is still much to be experienced and enjoyed on the trails in Colorado’s high country.
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