It’s autumn in the Rockies! Each fall across the Northern Hemisphere, less daylight hours and falling temperatures induce trees to start preparing for the winter months and the trees shed billions of leaves. The green leaves of our aspens turn to brilliant shades of yellow, orange and even red due to a transformation in leaf pigments.
Aspen propagate primarily by spouting from an ever-growing root system, which forms group of trees, or clones – and these can be just a few trees to several acres. Genetically identical, these clones have different chemical compositions and each cloned group changes color together. This is why it’s possible to see hillsides with one group of aspens changed and the remainder still green. These color changes indicate individual aspen clones.
In our area, a spectacular show of color precedes the leaf shedding, bringing lots of “leaf peepers” to Teller County and the surrounding area of Lake George. There’s some color already starting, and in the next few weeks we should be at prime viewing.
Fall is my favorite time of the year to both show property and to take photographs, and I’II often visit the same cloned group of aspens in Park County to take photos of the brilliant reds this group produces. It’s common to see people pulled off everywhere in our area to enjoy the beautiful vistas of color and photographers setting up tripods for the perfect shot.
I encourage you to go out and explore our beautiful area and enjoy Autumn in the Rockies!
Click on this article published in the Gazette last fall to find great locations in or near Teller County to take advantage of the fall colors:
Click on this recent article from 9news for locations around the state to see the fall colors: