Many of my previous newsletters on Utah covered red rock desert locations with bizarre geological formations, sand dunes, and cacti. For this newsletter, I traveled to northern Utah’s Wasatch Range on the western edge of the Colorado Plateau, the boundary between the Rocky Mountains and the Great Basin Desert. Late September usually brings the peak of fall color to these mountains east of Salt Lake City where canyon roads climb into evergreen forests and through groves of aspen painted in shades of orange and yellow, from late September into early October.
The most easily accessible autumn color locations on these rugged mountain peaks are southeast of Salt Lake City, east of Interstate 15, and south of Interstate 80. Like autumn color everywhere in higher elevations, the season is short here. A warm and dry summer or a wet and cool summer can change the date of peak color from mid-September to mid-October. I left home on September 28 and saw the peak of color arrive two days later in most of the locations I visited.
Notes and images from Bob Hitchman.