The short-lived weeks of autumn glory are some of my favorite of the year. Spending some time in Canada this fall took me away from my home state of Utah which was putting on a pretty great show of color this year. With so much territory I wanted to cover and so little time to do it, I focused my efforts on some of the Wasatch’s best places for foliage. I was not disappointed.
The foliage in 2015, while still beautiful, was somewhat lacking due to a widespread fungus affecting large populations of aspen trees in Utah. This year however it seemed much improved. I spent several days in the mountains, each time rechecking the leaves to see when they would reach peak color. Luckily I didn’t have to travel very far.
The aspens this fall were quite impressive. And Utah’s mountains have no shortage of them. With their interconnected root system, what appears to be a forest of hundreds or thousands of aspen trees could really be just one big one. These organisms represent some of the oldest and largest living organisms in the world. One tree, Pando, located in central Utah, is one of the oldest and largest living single organisms in the world at over 80,000 years old.
In the higher elevations of the Wasatch Mountains, some great locations to see these trees include the Alpine Loop near Mount Timpanogos, Nebo Loop, Big Cottonwood Canyon to Guardsman Pass, and Park City. Whether you choose to hike or bike on one of the many trails or simply take a leisurely drive through the mountain passes, there are plenty of beautiful views to behold.