September 23---It's definitely not as good as it was a year ago. Disappointing is the only way I can describe the colors I saw around Aspen. Driving up to Ashcroft just about all the aspens starting from the Conundrum road turnoff to the end of Castle Creek road have leaf mold. Colors are muted and some stands of aspens are already bare. The contrast to last year's brilliant abundance is stunning.
The good news is that the Bells were sweet---lots of snow on the mountain peaks, the trees at lake level were healthy, mixed colors with still a lot of green---although some up higher are bare when I was there on September 24.
It appears that the colors are later this year, perhaps as much as a week. But over the weekend of September 26-27 in the Steamboat area, they really came on strong.