Doug Beezley Photography | Colorado Fall 2009

The Fall of 2009 held great promise for one of the best years of high country color in years, if not decades. The weather had cooperated all spring and summer bringing optimal amounts of moisture which should have produced golden mountain-sides throughout the state. Then, Mother Nature had her own ideas! First, there was "leaf mold" in the Aspen/Maroon Bells area where there was too much moisture late in the season. The leaves turned brown and dropped. However, the Crested Butte and San Juan areas still held high promise as late as September 30 with colors peaking everywhere. Unfortunately, on Thursday, October 1, a huge storm blew into southwestern Colorado with rain, hail, sleet, snow, freezing temperatures and winds up to 70 miles per hour. Overnight, most of the aspen leaves were on the forest floor and only the shadow of what would have been remained. Neverthess, the time spent hunting for remaining color was rewarding and fun. And, it was a challenge, as well, as the weather literally changed daily as you will see from the photos in this gallery. One day is was 65 with bluebird skies, the next the high was 24 with freezing rain and snow. The locations I scouted and shot in the Crested Butte area included the Kebler Pass Road, Ohio Pass, and Gothic Valley. After a couple of days in these locales, I traveled south and west to the Cimarron Valley and Cimarron Ridge areas of the Uncompahgre Wilderness. In the Ouray and Ridgway areas, I concentrated on Ouray County Roads 5, 7, and 9 as well as Last Dollar Road in Ouray and San Miguel Counties. I didn't get the images I had planned and hoped for but actually was able to do better on several images. I hope you agree. It really is all about the experience and not the photographs.
Gold Through the Gate
East Beckwith Mountain
Drive-by Aspens +
A Season's Difference
Kebler Pass Aspen Forest +
Lost Lake Slough
Marcellina Mountain
Marcellina Mountain
Marcellina Mountain
Marcellina Mountain
Marcellina Mountain Couloirs
The Dyke
The Dyke
Game Trail
East Beckwith +
Slate River Ridgeline
Midnight at High Noon
Ohio Pass Aspen & Ferns
Slate River Valley Aspens +
Gothic Mountain Cabin +
The Dyke and Ruby Mountain +
One of a Kind +
The Dyke and Ruby Mountain +
Ohio Pass
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