OUT: ADD SOME COLOR TO YOUR WEEKEND
It’s Color Sunday on Grand Mesa and the aspen trees are transforming Colorado’s mountains into an brilliant golden landscape. Here are a few drives you can take this weekend to see the fall foliage.
Rifle to Meeker and loop back to Grand Junction over Douglas Pass
251 miles, 6 hours 55 minutes
From Grand Junction, take Interstate 70 east and then take the Rifle exit, Exit 87. Take U.S. Highway 6 to Colorado Highway 13 and continue north about 40 miles. Turn onto Colorado Highway 64 outside Meeker and continue about 71 miles. Turn south at Colorado Highway 139 just east of Rangely.
361 miles, 6 hours 46 minutes
Note: The route between Aspen and Leadville is narrow and has many switchbacks. From Grand Junction, take I-70 east and then take the Glenwood Springs exit, Exit 116. Take Colorado Highway 82, which will take you east through Aspen, about 45 miles to U.S. Highway 24. Continue north on U.S. 24 through Leadville and Minturn to get back to I-70.
Silver Jack Reservoir
190 miles roundtrip, 5 hours
From Grand Junction, take U.S. Highway 50 south through Montrose and the town of Cimarron. About 2.5 miles east of Cimarron, turn south on Cimarron Road to Silver Jack Reservoir. Turn around here or continue over Owl Creek Pass to U.S. Highway 550 north of Ridgway.
240 miles round trip, 9 hours
From Grand Junction, take U.S. Highway 50 southeast to Delta. Turn east onto Colorado Highway 92 and continue about 21 miles east to Hotchkiss. Take Colorado Highway 133 through Paonia. After about 22 miles, turn east onto 12 Road and drive about 31 miles over Kebler Pass to Crested Butte. The pass has the largest aspen tree grove in the state.
129 miles, 3 hours 13 minutes
From Grand Junction, take I-70 east and then take the Powderhorn exit, Exit 49. Take Colorado Highway 65 over Grand Mesa for about 62 miles. Turn west onto Colorado Highway 92, drive about four miles west to Delta and turn right to go northwest on U.S. Highway 50.