I never knew leaf peeping existed or that it was a thing until I moved to Colorado.

Down there, it's a huge deal!

You can imagine my initial reaction when I first heard this term.

You're likely having a similar response right about now. haha

Don't get me wrong, I remember driving through the mountains as a kid to look at the leaves changing colors, but I never knew there was an official name for this.

After living in Colorado for a few years, I like to think that I've become a bit of an expert when it comes to leaf peeping.

Here's what I've learned...

Timing is Key

Research the peak foliage times in the region you plan to visit.

Fall foliage varies based on climate, altitude, and tree species.

Generally, late September to mid-October is a good time for leaf peeping in many northern regions.

Plan Ahead

Research and plan your trip.

Popular leaf-peeping destinations can get crowded during peak season, so book accommodations and any necessary permits early.

Choose the Right Location

Select a destination known for its vibrant fall foliage.

The mountain passes in Montana are perfect. 

Local Resources

Check local websites, social media pages, and forums for real-time updates on foliage conditions.

Local experts often share the best spots and recent photos.

Scenic Routes

Plan scenic drives or hikes that take you through areas with various tree species.

Look for routes that pass through forests, lakes, mountains, and valleys for diverse landscapes.

Elevation Matters

Higher elevations tend to experience foliage changes earlier than lower ones.

You can plan a trip with high and low-elevation areas to maximize your leaf-peeping experience.

Weather Considerations

Be prepared for changing weather conditions.

Dress in layers and bring rain gear, just in case.

Camera Gear

If you're into photography, bring a camera with an excellent lens to capture vibrant colors.

A wide-angle lens is excellent for capturing sweeping landscapes.


Consider bringing binoculars to appreciate the details of the foliage, spot wildlife, and enjoy distant vistas.

Lodging Options

Stay in lodges, cabins, or inns that offer picturesque views of fall foliage right from your accommodation.

Off-Peak Times

If you prefer a quieter experience, consider visiting just before or after the peak leaf-peeping season.

You might miss the absolute peak color, but you'll likely encounter fewer crowds.

Local Events

Check for local festivals, farmers' markets, or events during your visit.

These can add a cultural dimension to your leaf-peeping adventure.

Relax and Enjoy

Take your time, relax, and immerse yourself in the beauty of nature's autumn spectacle.

Enjoy the moment and create lasting memories.

If you do find yourself in Colorado, check out these hikes!

This is Colorado's Best Hike According To 'The Discoverer'

If you're looking for the perfect Colorado hike, one international website recommends you visit this location. The Discoverer, a website that "...transports you to far off destinations directly from your inbox," put together a list of the best hikes in each state. According to their website, their suggestion "...transports you to far off destinations directly from your inbox. Start your week happier, smarter and more worldly with our wanderlust-inducing travel inspiration."

For your hiking pleasure, The Discoverer suggests you visit Colorado's Ice Lake Basin. This seven-mile climb up an alpine bowl is surrounded by a handful of 13,000 foot Colorado peaks. Some of the surrounding peaks include Fuller Peak, Vermillion Peak, Golden Horn, and Pilot Knob.

Take a look at some of the magnificent scenery, and give serious thought to exploring this highly-rated hike.

Hauntings more your thing?

The Most Haunted Hikes In Colorado You've Already Visited

A number of popular hikes in Colorado carry with them a secret history. While not commonly known in most cases, hikers have reported ghostly apparitions, disembodied voices, sudden drops in temperature, and "strange energy" at these Colorado locations. Chances are you've probably already been to a few if not all of these Colorado trails.

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