Heavenly temperatures and crisp Colorado air, a beautiful array of colors splashed across mountain vistas and the shimmering gold of quaking aspens. This fall colors tours is for photography and cycling enthusiasts alike, and takes us through some of the most beautiful areas in Colorado’s high country. We ride through and photograph Colorado’s most iconic locations, including Maroon Bells, Crystal Mill and Hanging Lake. Photography instruction will be provided plus classroom time to review and edit photos.
What to expect from the photography experience on this tourThis tour is designed for photographers who want to photograph fall in the Colorado Rockies. Photography instruction will be provided at each photo location for those who are learning. You should have a basic understanding of how to capture digital images with your equipment and knowledge of basic digital editing (i.e. exposure and cropping adjustments). Group instruction time is set aside for photo review and editing.
What to Expect from the cycling on this tourThis tour has three ride days with some climbing on day one and then flat to mild hills on day two and three. Please train and come prepared to ride. The scenery and the experience is the most beautiful from the seat of your bike. If you need to take a break from the bicycle or you are a non-riding partner who is coming along just for the photography stops, there will be comfy air conditioned transportation for you.
Tour Highlights, Map and Itinerary
Daily Itinerary and Ride Profiles
Day 1 – Arrive in Snowmass
Welcome orientation, route review, shoot locations/topics, and bike fitting at 6pm.
DAY 2 – PHOTOGRAPH SUNRISE AT MAROON BELLS // RIDE TO ASHCROFT – 24 miles
Early morning transport (5 a.m.) to the iconic Maroon Bells for sunrise photos. Photographing sunrise on the fall aspens at Maroon Bells is something you do not want to miss out on. Following our shoot, we will ride down the valley to Aspen and then on to the ghost town of Ashcroft for wildlife spotting along Castle Creek. Transfer or cycle back to Snowmass for a relaxing evening.
DAY 3 – RIDE SNOWMASS TO REDSTONE – 43 miles // Photograph Aspens & Crystal River Valley from McClure Pass
This ride follows the Rio Grande Trail, old train tracks turned to paved bike path and part of the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy. The majority of this ride is on a paved bike path. We will spend the evening in Redstone. Surrounded by towering red cliffs and set on the banks of the Crystal River, Redstone is an enchanting collection of art galleries and eclectic shops. Relax in Redstone for the evening or take a short drive up McClure pass to photograph aspens and the Crystal River Valley.
Day 4 – Photograph at Crystal Mill // No organized ride this day
We will depart for Crystal Mill in the afternoon. The morning is yours to explore Redstone and then we will review and edit photos in a classroom session. Take time for lunch on your own and then transport by jeep to The Crystal Mill. We will be here during late afternoon and blue hour to photograph this iconic landmark framed by shimmering aspens and stunning mountain views.
DAY 5 – PHOTOGRAPH AT HANGING LAKE // RIDE REDSTONE TO Hanging LAKE TRAILHEAD – 40 Miles
We will ride from Redstone to the resort town of Glenwood Springs where you can get lunch and then shuttle to the trailhead or continue riding east along the Colorado River to Hanging Lake Trailhead. In the afternoon we will take a short, steep hike to Hanging Lake for a photography session at this national natural landmark. We will drive about an hour back to Snowmass this afternoon for a campfire dinner on Snowmass Mountain. Dinner as a group is covered for this last evening together before departure in the morning.
The standard bike for this tour is a Giant Defy Advanced 3 available in [Compact] 34/50, or [Triple] 30/39/50 Crankset and [Compact] 11x28, or [Triple] 12x25 rear cassette and 700x25 tires.
What to Bring
- Camera, lenses, tripod and bag to carry them.
- Laptop with your choice of photo editing software. Laptops will be available for editing and backups if you don’t want to travel with your own.
- Your own cycling shoes and pedals, any bike bags you like to ride with, your bike helmet. Helmet is included in bike hire if you don’t want to travel with your own helmet.
Weather and Kit
- During riding hours – expect warm sunny weather between 60F (16C) and 75F (24C) during the days. Mornings can be chilly before 10am; around 45F (6F) degrees F.
- During photography hours – morning and late evening photo shoots in the mountains can be in the 20F (-6C) to 40F (5C) range. Bring layers, not heavy jackets.
I am happy to discuss any aspect of your riding and photography kit with you. Please email me any time with questions or Schedule a time to chat using my Calendly scheduler.
Your personal bags will be carried by the support vehicle throughout the event. If traveling with your own bike; we strongly ask that your bikes be transported by bike bags (semi-rigid/soft). Please do not arrive to the event with rigid bike travel boxes. Support vehicles will not be able to stow large solid bike boxes as well as all luggage throughout the event.
Fitness & Training
You should be capable of riding comfortably up to 50miles/80km in a day over hilly terrain. Please arrive ready to ride. Don’t let us or yourself down. Train to ride.
Your Tour Leaders
Cancellation & Refund Policy
We understand that sometimes it’s necessary to change your plans. These policies apply if you need to cancel:
All cancellations are subject to a minimum of a $100 service charge. If you cancel and your spot is otherwise filled, you will be refunded the full amount you have paid (minus the $100 service charge). However if you cancel and your spot is not filled, the following applies:
- 120 days or more: full refund minus $100 fee
- 90 days or more: 50% refund
- 60 days or more: 30% refund
- Less than 60 days: no refund
Requests for refunds must be submitted in writing. There is no refund for travelers arriving late or unexpectedly leaving a trip.