Top 5 Places to Photograph in Colorado

People are always asking me some of my favorite places to photograph so I thought I’d start sharing them with you all based on locations. For my first one, I wanted to share my top 5 favorite places to photograph in Colorado.  There are so many beautiful places that it is tough to pick just 5 so I’ll add some honorable mentions on at the end.  In no particular order:

1. Highway 550 between Durango and Silverton – This is a beautifully scenic drive anytime of the year though spring and fall might be best.  In the spring you get lots of green in the valleys and can have snow still on the mountain peaks.  During fall, the aspen trees on the side of the road shine yellow and gold.  Along the way don’t forget to look for spots on the side of the road that provide great photography opportunities.  Here is an old fence that I used as a foreground at sunrise over Engineer Mountain.  Engineer Mountain is to the north in this shot for your photography planning purposes.

Durango sunrise. Durango, Colorado.

2. Garden of the Gods – There is a reason that Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs is one of the top-rated parks in the country.  It is easily accessible with paved walking trails.  Pikes Peak sits on the west side of Garden of the Gods and the rocks run north and south.   While I usually like to photograph into a sunrise or sunset, with how the rocks light up in the early morning and alpine glow on Pike Peak make sunrise my preferred shooting time at this park.

Garden of the Gods sunrise. Colorado Springs, Colorado

3. Paint Mines Interpretive Park – Have you been to Paint Mines Interpretive Park?  Outside of Calhan, this park is full of natural wonders.  From hoodoos to unique landscapes it is a photographer’s delight.  I would recommend going to photograph here at sunset and then staying and enjoying a starry sky.

4. Mt. Sneffels – Just outside of Ridgway, Colorado is some of the best photography opportunities in the state of Colorado.  The Sneffels Mountains dominate the scenery here.   Follow highway 62 out of town and you will be rewarded with many photographic spots along the way.   Both sunrise and sunset are great here.  Fall is a busy time and provides some amazing scenery so if you plan to go then, plan early.  Anytime of year though this spot won’t disappoint.

Sneffels Mountain Range during Peak Fall. Colorado.

5. City of Denver – Yes the capital of Denver provides many great city photography opportunities.  From Union Station, City Park, and Coors Field, to sunflower fields outside of town one would be remiss if they didn’t take some time to photograph the city.  I found that many of the locations photograph best at sunset.

A few honorable mentions:

  • Maroon Bells – A list of Colorado places to photograph wouldn’t be complete without this location.  Sunrise is the best time to photograph here.
  • Great Sand Dunes National Park – A truly unique landscape.  Plan to spend a few (windy) days here.
  • Rocky Mountain National Park – A great spot close to Denver with many beautiful spots to take in mountain scenery.

Sunrise at Maroon Bells - Aspen, Colorado during peak fall colors.

Have a location you think I missed?  Want more details on a spot?  Let me know.


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