Best Places Near Colorado Springs for Aspen Tree Fall Foliage Viewing

Fall is a magical time in the Pikes Peak region. Crisp, autumn air welcomes vibrantly colored leaves that put on a dazzling display of color that brings people from miles to witness. Every year, visitors and locals alike set out into the wilderness to experience the beauty and serenity that come with the changing aspen leaves.

The leaves usually begin changing in early September and last no longer than mid October. The display begins high up in the mountains, and works its way down in elevation as the temperature gets colder. Splashes of yellow, orange and red all mingle for a beautiful scene. The late spring melt and fairly gentle summer weather should bode well for the aspens this fall. These conditions may also lengthen the time the leaves are on the trees (which means more time for you to enjoy the views).

Here is a list of the best areas in the Pikes Peak region to view the autumn colors:

In order to avoid afternoon showers, morning is usually the best time to start your hike. The park is about a 45-minute drive from Downtown Colorado Springs. While the hike does require a $7 entrance pass, it can be used for an entire day including onsite events. Stop by the Visitor Center first to pick up a map detailing the 55 miles of trails. You can spend all day hiking in Mueller State Park, enjoying the beautiful aspens and watchable wildlife. The best hike to view the aspens is Cheesman Ranch Loop. It’s a moderate 5.4-mile trail that weaves in and out of aspen groves and meadows on the north side of the park. Pack a picnic to enjoy while, or after, exploring.

Start your morning with a hearty breakfast then head to the tiny town of Green Mountain Falls just off Highway 24. The trailhead starts here. This free trail is six miles round-trip (about seven miles when you include the hike from parking to the trailhead) and will take you to South Catamount Reservoir found along the Pikes Peak Highway.

You won’t see many aspen trees toward the beginning of the trail, but once you get to a spot called the Garden of Eden, you’ll be able to see the aspens along the rest of the hike. Depending on the time of year, you’ll also see a wide variety of wildflowers along the way. Make sure to take the dirt road to the South Catamount Reservoir. The aspens are beautiful along the road and once you get to the reservoir, you’ll have a gorgeous view of Pikes Peak.

The Crags trail is a great hike to view aspens and enjoy a spectacular view of the area. The trailhead starts in Divide, Colorado near the Crags Campground.

Stroll along a stream to view the aspen trees that lead to Rampart Reservoir. The easy trail is 2.6 miles round trip and takes about 1.5 hours. The trailhead starts in Woodland Park.

Barr Trail is the 12.6 mile (one way) hike to the summit of Pikes Peak – America’s Mountain. You’ll find great views and some leaf peeping along the way. Be sure to start early and give yourself the entire day for this hike. A popular choice is to hike half way, then spend the night at Barr Camp before reaching the 14,115-foot peak.

Seven Bridges is an up and back trail at the top of North Cheyenne CaƱon. As you follow the trail, it leads you over seven bridges that cross the meandering Cheyenne Creek. There is a beautiful aspen grove past the 7th bridge.

Thousands struck with gold fever made their way into the area on the southwest side of Pikes Peak in the 1890s. Most of them walked or rode horses. Their goal was to reach the Cripple Creek & Victor Mining District, where newly found gold was bringing promises of easy-found wealth. Today, hikers can enjoy a series of trails that lead through the wealthy of gold mining that made this area famous during the Pikes Peak or Bust Gold Rush.

The map below projects the best times to catch the breathtaking colors.

Colorado Springs Real Estate Professionals
The MacGuire Team works and lives in the Colorado Springs area, so we are local experts of all the things that matter to you! Whether it's schools, location, neighborhoods, community, or even just the best locations to check out the beautiful fall foliage, let us be your number one source for your real estate needs. Our mission is to provide unparalleled service by putting OUR CLIENTS at the center of all we do!

Mike MacGuire
Colorado Springs Real Estate Agent
The MacGuire Team
6760 Corporate Dr
Ste 300
Colorado Springs, CO 80919

719-536-4324 or 719-660-6793


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