If you have yet to experience a fall day in Telluride, it’s high time you get out there and hit the trails. After all, it’s the best way to explore the stunning mountain town in all its golden glory. Don’t just take our word for it, though, because we have plenty of jaw-dropping pictures to prove it.
As many a local would attest, this time of year brings much more than one might think. Turns out, autumn in the mountains isn’t just about waiting for the snow to fly (although yes, that’s still a big part of it). Truth is, fall is an absolute favorite among longtime locals and first-time tourists alike. With its colorful leaves and crisp temps, there’s no denying this time of year delivers stunning scenery akin to something straight out of a storybook. Seriously. And the best part is, there are plenty of ways to soak up all that golden goodness just steps from your door.
Photo: Visit Telluride/Ryan Bonneau
For starters, you can take a stroll down Main Street or on the River Trail, and just look up! The ski resort is popping with color and every surrounding aspen grove is lit up like … a Christmas tree? No, that’s not right. Lit up like … a perfect fall treat!
If you’re after more of a heart-pounding walk, be sure to hit up the Jud Wiebe trail — a go-to hike right in town — for an enchanted walk through meandering aspen trees. Additionally, Telluride’s surrounding mesas offer picture-perfect views chock-full of yellow, gold, and orange hues for days.
Photo: Visit Telluride/Ryan Bonneau
While we’re on the subject of leaf-peeping, here’s another way you can spot the most beautiful bounty of brilliantly painted branches: on a bike! While exploring on foot is a great way to go, catching the colors while zipping down the Meadows or cruising up Prospect delivers all the thrills one would expect.
Still not convinced fall is the best time of year to hit the trails in Telluride? Well, here’s some advice: Take a hike! No, really. Go take a hike in town, around a mesa, or up to a high alpine lake, and see for yourself. The weather’s ideal, the scenery picturesque, and the experience unforgettable. Oh, and there’s this, too; leaf-lined trails are just the beginning of an epic adventure during gold season. Explore Telluride in the fall, and you won’t be disappointed by a town that’s dripping in natural beauty and authentic hospitality alike.
Julie Peirano is a lifestyle writer based in Telluride, Colorado. When she’s not typing away about travel and trending news, Julie loves exploring the Southwest by way of rafting, camping, and skiing — and dancing, of course.
Visit Telluride/Ryan Bonneau
Hummingbirds zip through the air, waterfalls crash down in cascades of froth and aspen groves have resumed their lush green tones. Summer has arrived in Telluride, which means it’s high time for hitting the trails.
Here in the box canyon, outdoor recreation opportunities are endless: we can bag peaks, climb crags, mountain bike over passes and take icy dips in alpine lakes. And at the foundation of all of these activities are our public trails, which are the key to opening up this endless and beautiful world of nature – and arguably the most important outdoor amenity we have.
Trails offer ribbons of dirt for long runs, epic bike rides and cross-country hikes, but they are so much more than vehicles for exertion. They are also our access into nature, which neuroscientists and researchers are proving more and more has significant benefits on human health. Immersion in nature is shown to regulate mood, lower stress hormones and blood pressure and help with conditions like depression and anxiety. It promotes creativity and reflection. Plus it’s really fun. And the best news is, it doesn’t take a multi-week wilderness excursion or strenuous backcountry hike to reap these benefits. Even a quick jaunt on your local trail will do you good. Just make sure to stop and inspect the wildflowers, listen to the burble of the stream or watch the clouds pass overhead.
Trails are also the great equalizer. You don’t need a locker of gear to hit the trail – just a pair of sturdy shoes – and people of all ages and abilities can enjoy them together. Which makes them optimal for family time.
LOOKING FOR SOME OF TELLURIDE’S BEST, LOCAL TRAILS?
HERE ARE THREE OPTIONS:
INTRODUCTORY TRAIL: BEAR CREEK
With its aspen-shaded path and gentle grade, Bear Creek is Telluride’s great introductory trail. Starting right in town at the south end of Pine Street, the popular trail winds through shady forests, offering glimpses of the rushing creek as well as views of the cliffs in the upper basins above. With a cascading waterfall as its finale, the 4.5-mile-roundtrip trail never disappoints.
WILDFLOWER TOUR: HOPE LAKE
Because it begins at a relatively high elevation, the Hope Lake Trail south of Telluride offers the best bang for your buck when it comes to alpine wildflowers, sweeping basins and icy high-altitude lakes. The trail takes hikers through thick woods, landscapes thick with paintbrush, bistort and king’s crown, and finally to the shores of Hope Lake, a vividly blue alpine lake where icebergs often bob even in the summer months. This trail is moderately difficult and accessed via Hope Lake Road near Trout Lake.
BACKCOUNTRY EPIC: SNEFFELS HIGHLINE
If you are looking for the ultimate tour of the San Juan Mountain high country, look no further than Sneffels Highline. This 13-mile hike climbs through aspen groves into the rocky basins above Telluride, where it unfurls through basins lush with delphiniums, roams through otherworldy rock landscapes and climbs over an unforgettable notch. Be sure to bring a map, layers and food, and start this one early; it takes several hours.
Writer, Editor, & Journalist for Telluride Inside & Out
Telluride Inside…and Out is a lifestyle ezine, the place where a rural mountain setting meets cosmopolitan culture. TIO brings you behind the scenes to see what is happening in and around the Telluride region and the impact Telluride has around the world. Spend some time with TIO and you may find that you too are 100% Telluride Inside. We post daily.
Check out the 2018 MountainFilm line up!
Bootdoctors continues to be the proud official MountainFilm store, the only place you can purchase this year’s MountainFilm clothing, packs and other goodies. Stop by our store at 213 W Colorado during the festival for all your festival needs plus a wide array of travel clothing.
Demo a new Yeti or Specialized bike for the ultimate festival experience. Beat the cue lines as you roll down the Telluride streets and trails in style.
Mountainfilm takes place in Telluride over Memorial Weekend, May 25 – May 28. Passes to the 2018 festival are selling out very fast., very few remain. To get your passes or for more information about Mountainfilm, visit here. Telluride author Susan Dalton captures Mountainfilm’s best memories in “Mountainfilm: 40 Years.”
For some the “low tide” Winter meant their bike was never left lonely and cold in the dark recesses of their garage.
For many the honking of geese signals the arrival of Spring. Trails are dryer than ever this year and the sun is shining above.
It’s time to give your ride some love.
Sean McCoy of gearjunkie.com assembled a easy-to-follow checklist to get your bike ready for the trail. Read on…
All winter, your bike has sat, neglected and lonely, in a darkened garage. But spring is in the air, and before that first ride (or as a thank you for a winter of faithful service) you need to give your trusty steed some love.
If your bike needs a more thorough cleaning, bring it in to our Colorado av Bootdoctors for the Ultimate Bike Tune, including an ultrasonic deep clean of parts and gears. Call to make an appointment 970-728-4525 or walk-in. We are open during April and May from 10 am to 6 pm.
We have new Specialized and Yeti bikes in store now. Come demo!
BootDoctors’ good friend and Master Bootfitter Bob Egeland addresses the
challenges and opportunities with the new generation of AT boots.
Check out his hints on making sure your touring boots take you as far as you want to push it.
Then come in to Bootdoctors in Taos or Telluride to get your next pair of touring boots properly fitted.
We have Master bootfitters who specialize in touring boots.
While his profession might leave some feeling a bit squeamish, Bob Egeland, a board-certified Pedorthist, is passionate about keeping people happy in their ski boots all day long. And finding a comfortable fit is his top priority, especially for backcountry skiers who don’t have the option to take a break in the lodge if toes start to tingle.
BIG IDEAS FOR FUN IN OUR LITTLE MOUNTAIN TOWN
Whether skiing, Nordic cruising or Fat Bike trail riding, we have all the gear
and friendly local advice you need for a great time at our 3 BootDoctors’ stores.
Shout out to all our great local businesses who helped make this a memorable experience!
– Read the full story, from ROSE & IVY Travel Guide –
When it comes to winter travel destinations, a memorable trip includes an ample amount of time spent on the mountain skiing or snowboarding, soaking in the beauty of nature snowshoeing, or Nordic skiing, rounded out with delicious meals to refuel. Telluride, Colorado is an outdoor and na