The Rocky Mountains vie with New England as America's most spectacular spot for autumn photography, and nowhere else in the Rockies can one find richer, brighter autumn colors than in southwestern Colorado. The San Juan Mountains, geologically the youngest subrange of the Rocky Mountain chain, boast not only immense virgin stands of quaking aspen—the most colorful trees in the West—but also a photogenic mountain topography of soaring, saw-toothed summits and deep, breathtaking valleys.
"The tour exceeded my expectations. Todd was very professional and concerned about everyone's individual needs. He worked hard to get us to the best locations to photograph during the best light of each day."
We explore this vibrant landscape at the very peak of the season and observe whole mountainsides ablaze with the vivid yellow, orange and red hues of the transformed aspen leaves. Often, at this time of the year, the mountain summits will be dusted with white from the first snowfall, imparting the seasonal drama of the coming cold winter to the panorama of warm autumn tones below. Imagine this scene under the crisp blue of high altitude skies and you will have an idea of the photographic treat in store for us during this weeklong shoot!
As we shift with the advancing color from valley to valley, the constantly changing vistas promise enough photographic variety to fill three or four weeks of shooting—not just one. We capture the scenic panoramas encompassing Ralph Lauren's Double RL Ranch, the imaginative zigzag patterns of classic western-style aspen bole fences, and pass through a number of well-preserved historic mining towns. Included in our shoot are visits to historic Silverton and the world-famous resort of Telluride. At every turn, we enjoy and photograph one of the finest displays of autumn leaf color in the West.
This is an especially good shoot for those wanting or needing individualized photography assistance in the field. Learn the techniques to design some of the best in western landscape photography—plan to join Todd Pierce to capture the exceptional splash of fall colors in the Colorado Rockies!
Day 1 (Sep 24)
Participants arrive at Montrose airport for the afternoon transfer by group van to our tour hotel in Ouray. (D)
With only one hotel as our base, we spend these five full days photographing aspen forests—framed by rugged mountains or reflected in glassy lakes—all ablaze in backlit glory. We concentrate on locations made famous by a host of contemporary photographers, including the spectacular scenics of Dallas Divide, the superb high country along the Million Dollar Highway, the Uncompahgre Plateau and the back roads of Owl Creek Pass leading to Courthouse Rock—the filming location for two classic John Wayne movies, True Grit and Cimarron. Our daily itinerary and workshop topics will depend upon the weather and on the continually changing altitudinal aspen palette, as we seek out and photograph the shimmering yellows and golds of aspens at their peak of color. (BLD)
Day 7 (Sep 30)
We drive to the Montrose airport this morning for return flights home. (B)
Stunning colors, the most beautiful mountains I have ever seen.
This tour was by far the best photo tour I have taken because of the combination of the place, services (attention to detail) and tour leadership, resulting in a memorable experience that I won't forget. I came back with hundreds of great images that will decorate my house and office for a long time.