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The Colorado blue spruce is the state tree, but it is the quaking aspen that is the best known and most easily recognized tree in Colorado. The “gold rush” occurs every fall as millions of people are lured to the high country to view the beautiful colors of changing aspen.

This member of the poplar family, which grows at elevations ranging from about 6,000 feet to almost 11,500 feet, can be found in all of Colorado’s national forests — but nowhere in Colorado can one see as many acres of aspen as on the drive over Kebler Pass.

Quaking aspen, populus tremuloides, gets its scientific name from a characteristic of the leaf. The heart-shaped leaves have a fine-toothed margin, and the petiole — the stem that attaches the leaf to the tree — is flattened. The flat petiole causes the leaf to quake or tremble in the slightest breeze. Many legends revolve around the belief that the tree trembles in the presence of man.

The color change in the high country starts in the middle of September and lasts into October, depending on temperatures and weather conditions. On a clear, cool September day, the combination of blue-gray and pure white of snow-capped peaks, yellow to red-colored aspen, and rich blue skies can easily cause a sensory overload.

Taken with Canon 5D Mark II and Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM

Wojciech Dabrowski is a landscape and portrait photographer known for unique conceptual images and ideas. His work covers many aspects of photography, from creating lasting memories in the form of family portraits and weddings through baby or glamour shoots to beautiful landscapes.

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  • Adri  Padmos
    Adri Padmosabout 4 years ago

    Great colors and a wonderful compo with this S-curve!

  • Mystique45
    Mystique45about 4 years ago

    This is wonderful, love the light on the golden leaves and the winding road leading us through the image!

  • LeeAnne Emrick
    LeeAnne Emrickabout 4 years ago

    Wow, just gorgeous.

  • Barbara Kite
    Barbara Kiteabout 4 years ago

    Oh, I like this, because I like to get out and take picture, the joy of my life, excellent job.

  • Christine Annas
    Christine Annasabout 4 years ago

    A photographer’s dream! Well done, it is stunning!

  • anaisanais
    anaisanaisabout 4 years ago


  • Ami  Wilber-Mosher
    Ami Wilber-Mo...about 4 years ago

    Love this!

  • Ben Waggoner
    Ben Waggoneralmost 4 years ago

    ^ What they all said! I love “inviting” roads and trails… =)

  • Patrick Downey
    Patrick Downeyalmost 4 years ago

    Wonderful shot..great fall colors and composition!

  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillaralmost 4 years ago

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