For the past few weeks any sign of autumn was difficult to discern. September is generally too early for witnessing the accustomed autumn transformation. Drier climes often lack the foliage that becomes the colorful autumnal canvas.
The journey through Colorado’s San Juan Mountains ended the search for color. On the way to the touristy town of Durango the tall mountains proudly displayed pearl-like necklaces of snow; the flirty lower elevations flaunted shimmering yellow bands of Aspen and stout golden grasses interspersing strands of dark lustrous evergreen forests. The juxtaposition was magical. We habitually pulled to the roadside for picturetaking. After taking dozens of photos we couldn’t realize it was hopeless to fully capture the beauty of the landscape.
Durango was a vibrant town full of visitors seeking the colors of autumn. We learned that many Coloradans make annual fall pilgrimages here much the way folks journey to New England or Minnesota’s North Shore. This is Durango:
Durango has an eclectic blend of old hotels–three on Main Street are over 100-years old and the newer motel/hotel chains. There are restaurants galore and stores that curry to the average tourist, as well as folks seeking western art and finer clothing.
The town also offers a wide range of activities including whitewater rafting, horseback riding and taking a three hour trip round trip via the Durango and Silverton Railroad to the old silver mining town of Silverton.
Silverton is a higher class tourist trap. This handsome town of nearly 700 residents was founded in 1874. It enjoys the distinction of being one of the highest towns in the country– over 9,300 ft. high. It also has several buildings over one hundred years old.
One is certainly taken back in time during a visit to the burg.
SW Colorado was beautiful and the inhabitants were certainly a colorful group.
Those strands of golden aspen among the evergreens make fall time in the Rockies is my favorite.