There are few places as scenic in the fall as the Maroon Bells Wilderness Area, located in the White River National Forest near Aspen, Colorado. This stunningly beautiful place is known to attract crowds each September thanks to the changing colors of the local aspen trees. The higher altitude causes autumn to arrive a bit earlier than in other parts of the country, setting the area aglow in golden hues.
The highlight of this hike is a visit to Maroon Lake, which not only reflects the brightly colored trees on its still waters, but two 14,000-foot peaks that tower impressively overhead. There are multiple trails to hike throughout the area, the longest of which is 13 miles in length and will provide a full days’ worth of adventure.
And when you’re ready to pitch your tent for the evening, head to nearby Silver Bells Campground where you’ll find a quiet, peaceful place to enjoy a fall evening.
Quick Tip: When hiking and camping in the fall, be sure to dress appropriately. The days can be quite warm and yet temperatures can drop off sharply in the evening. Bring extra layers and a jacket. You might not need them on the trail, but they’ll come in handy at the campsite.