Weather forecasters say mid-September is a great time to start ‘leaf peeping’ near Winter Park, Colorado. The dazzling golds and yellows are just starting to show in the mountains around Winter Park resort. Prime leaf peeping begins about mid-September and can go into October. With aspen trees making up about 20% of Colorado forests, be sure to put leaf peeping at Winter Park on your list of fall trips.
Taking place Saturday, September 14th is the Winter Park FallFest. This is a wonderful family-friendly event that all ages will enjoy. From 12 to 5 p.m. the 19th annual Kids Fall Festival takes place during the FallFest. The day is filled with live music, food, silent auction items, face painting, bobbing for donuts and more. It is a time to enjoy the fall colors and fall scenes around Winter Park at the Rendezvous Event Center (78821 US Hiway 40, Winter Park, CO, 80482). FallFest is a parent-run fundraiser for the Grand Kids Early Learning Center.
When not at FallFest, continue to venture out into the Colorado mountains to see the leaves by car, foot or bike. Winter Park has something for all abilities. Take a country drive to peep at the leaves. Head west on Hiway 40 to see the other beautiful towns in Grand County. My favorite is to drive over to Grand Lake, Colorado. Enjoy lake views, gold colors and maybe even a drive into Rocky Mountain National Park. Check road conditions before you go at cotrip.org and search for Trail Ridge Road. It can close early in the season due to snow.
Or, pull out those hiking boots for a walk in the woods on one of the many trails in the surrounding Winter Park area. Hike at the resort, or venture towards other local trails in the county. Stop by the Winter Park/Fraser Visitor Center to get an update on trail conditions.
Biking is another great way to check out the leaves. My favorite is a fall bike ride through the golden forests with incredible views. Biking in the fall is almost like being on a golden pathway of aspen leaves. Nothing is better than a bluebird sunny, fall day to explore the trails and enjoy the enchanted leaf changing forest.