Despite warm and sunny days, the air is becoming crisp with the taste of fall. Every day, it is as if the world has changed overnight, as aspen and oak brush transition from green to red, yellow and orange.

The days are still warm and all of the jeep trails are calling the adventurer to experience the change of season in the high country. Last Dollar Road, between Ridgway and Telluride is a photographers dreamscape this time of year. Of course, every trail is beautiful, and just a simple drive up the Million Dollar Highway is spectacular.

Checking the website for the San Juan National Forest, and seeing the leaves are at 70%, we took a quick drive yesterday to see for ourselves. The area around Ironton and Crystal Lake is spectacualr right now, and from the glimmers of green within the reds and golds, the next week or so should continue to amaze.

According to the USDA website, the best viewing is as follows:

Date: As of September 16, 2018

Estimated Percentage of Current Fall Foliage:

Durango to Purgatory – 35%
Missionary Ridge – 45%
Molas Pass/Coal Bank – 75%
Silverton/Red Mtn Pass – 70%
Pagosa – 10%
Dolores to Lizard Head Pass – 20%
Mancos/La Platas – 20% 
Ouray to Telluride – 15%

Areas with Greatest Amount of Color / Recommended Viewing Areas:
Oak brush looking good in most areas.

Best right now in the Molas Pass and Silverton areas and peaking by there early this week.
Estimated Peak Viewing Period:
Next week we could see some peak colors in some areas.


Viewing Suggestions / Tips:
Aim for the high percentage areas for the best photography.
Trees That Are Currently Turning Color:
Oak Brush changing early and good.  Aspens good and changing fast.
 For More Information on Fall Colors Please Contact:
San Juan Public Lands Center, Durango (970) 247-4874


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