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Dallas & Emma GoldLast week, as I continued mapping out my October road-trip and researching shot locations, I noticed a few tweets from local folks in Telluride that made me a bit curious.

So with a little knowledge in hand, I trusted my gut instinct and booked a room for a couple of nights, to ensure that I get fall foliage scenics in Mountain Village area.  A client in Mountain Village coming up was my prime mover.  Over deliver is my motto and to be sure that I provide my clients with results that bring that back again and again.

As I left Denver, I knew the colors would be pretty amazing heading up US-285, as I had driven the route as far as Poncha Springs a few days earlier.  What I was not prepared for was the absolutely zoo of cars & people at the summit of Kenosha Pass at 1pm on a Friday afternoon.  Yikes!!

That zoo caused a little delay, but nothing insurmountable.  The rest of the drive to Telluride was pretty uneventful, though I did enjoy the color up and over Monarch Pass.

Once I arrived in Mountain Village, I proceeded to a particular location to capture a few shots with fall foliage and the client property in background, to ensure I at least got a few images in case weather came in.

Once checked into my room at Mountain Lodge Telluride and had some dinner (I highly recommend  the chicken medallions & creamy mashers at the restaurant on-site), then retired to my room to get some rest and be ready for the next day.

Sleep wasn’t as restful as I would have hoped, but with a cup of coffee and breakfast burrito for breakfast, I began my day enjoying a crisp & cool morning to trek around in Mountain Village.  The colors were not quite at peak though the mixture of green, yellow, gold & red was strong throughout the area!

Gold to Red

Out in the middle of a ski run, all by itself, was this lonesome aspen leaf.  Macro-shot, of sorts was hard to resist.  As I continued on my trek, I crossed the golf course (making sure to check for golfers first; it was still early and about 50 degrees F, so no golfers at that time).Clusters of yellow, gold & red

Nearing the tee for hole#1, I turned around and saw this spectacular image of color with Silver Peak in the background.  Spotty clouds added character to the day, for sure!  The aspens almost looked like they were on fire.
Palmyra Peak Red & Gold

Scanning the area, Wilson Peak loomed on the western horizon and clouds overhead just begged for an image to be created!
Wilson Gold II

So much scenery in just the Telluride / Mountain Village area that a photographer could literally spend weeks hiking around creating amazing imagery.  As I approached the main village area, a set of trees looked very inviting.

While shooting abstract in not anything new, this set of aspen trees really met my eye with that style of approval.
Abstract Aspens

As I continued on, trekking back towards my room, another set of trees with some lodging mixed in really set the tone for the rest of the day (throughly happy and enjoying the vast amount of outdoor time).
The Color Red Prevails!

The temperatures had risen quite substantially and I was drenched.  Feeling the need for a shower, I headed back to the room.  A long hot shower was just what I needed and allowed me to re-group for the next phase of photos.  Cross valley shots of Telluride and Mountain Village showing the spectacular nature of the San Juan Mountains and Telluride.
Mountain Village & Telluride Ski Area

What a spectacular day!  There are not enough words in any language to truly speak of my love for the mountains, but those of the San Juan Mountains and Telluride / Mountain Village are a few levels above that yet! Thank God for my Grandpa Schaefer; his passion for hiking and the outdoors are what drives me to spend as much time outdoors and I can!

The next morning, I awoke to changing conditions that made me realize my gut instincts were spot-on.  I had a gut feeling about two weeks prior, but I didn’t listen to it then…
Snow on the Sneffels Range

I still have a return trip for the client shoot coming up, but with a healthy dose of rain & snow, there is little doubt that the colors are nearly done for the 2014 season (though I still have hopes for great scenic shots before the leaves are 100% gone).

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