Fall travel guide

Explore beaches, back roads, vineyards, and more during the West's golden season

Top 18 spots for fall color

Go on a foliage tour of the West at our favorite places to soak up the season's golds, crimsons, and more

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More places to soak up fall color
Photo courtesy of U.S. National Arboretum; written by Kathryn Cannady

More places to soak up fall color

COLORADO: Sections of the 22-mile Guanella Pass Scenic Byway are unpaved (check conditions), but the aspens will make you happy to be driving slowly. From Grant to Georgetown; bit.ly/boWecw

IDAHO: The 69-mile Teton Scenic Byway is a drive of subtle yellows--here cottonwoods and there aspens. What's not subtle: the view of the Tetons. From Swan Valley to Ashton; 208/354-2312.

MONTANA: On the Seeley-Swan Scenic Drive, you'll spy the bright yellow fall needles of the larch, a deciduous conifer. Start 1 hour northesast of Missoula on State 83; Lolo National Forest; bit.ly/SdfmNA

NEVADA: On the 5-mile (one way) Marlette Lake Trail, you'll emerge from the aspens to see them reflected on the lake. East of Lake Tahoe; access at Spooner Lake, 1 hour south of Reno; bit.ly/RbQhTA

OREGON: You want bold russets and reds? Try a hike in William L. Finley National Wildlife Refuge's Upland Forest for oaks and maples. Near Corvallis, off Finley Refuge Rd.; fwd.gov/willamettevalley/finley

UTAH: In Fishlake National Forest, Pando, the largest aspen clone in the world, creates a gigantic blanket of shimmering color. 3 1/2 hours south of Salt Lake City; 435/896-1070.

WASHINGTON: On Skyline Trail, in Mount Rainier National Park, don't just look up--focus downward to see the deep reds of vine maples and huckleberry bushes. About 2 1/2 hours south of Seattle; nps.gov/mora

WYOMING: You'll pass logging, but don't fear: Aspen Alley leads through a stand so dense, it's like swimming in a sea of gold. 2 hours west of Laramie; Medicine Bow National Forest; 307/326-5258.

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