If you’re planning a fall foliage tour in Boulder – whether you want to savor the gorgeous fall weather or you want to unwind before the cold season starts – this list will help you make the most of it.
Fall season is here to enjoy, Boulder.
As summer wanes, it is the perfect time to plan a fall foliage tour to witness stunning vistas. While there is no exact timing each year, fall colors in Boulder tend to be best around the first week of October. If you want to behold that classic photograph of the golden trees against a snow-capped mountain peak, nearby Longs Peak usually gets its first snowfall around Oct. 5–20.
This enchanting time of year in Boulder will leave you breathless as cottonwoods and aspen trees put on a golden panoramic show. The Boulder Creek dazzles with every shade of gold, red and yellow as it sets the foothills aglow with blazing fall color. The changing colors of leaves, crisp weather, picturesque open spaces – there’s a lot to love about the fall season. From seasonal activities and events in Pearl Street Mall, to outdoor adventures, to a feast for your taste buds, an experience in Boulder is a must. Here are some things that you must NEVER miss this fall season in Boulder.
Get Your Hike On
Fall is the prime time to get out and experience the great outdoors before winter. You can go out any time of the day without having a problem with the fervent summer heat. Boulder is known for incredible mountain views and pristine hiking trails. Fortunately, you don’t have to be a pro-trekker because Boulder offers a variety of trails to suit any level or ability. You can find a hiking or walking trails lined with aspen trees, the tree that blazes yellow during the autumn season.
If you’re looking for a facile trail for kids or beginners, Wonderland Lake is the best trail for an easy-going stroll. The flat, well-maintained trail encircles a tranquil wetland habitat while offering gorgeous views of the foothills. Meanwhile, the abundant wildlife at Wonder Lake is a bonus.
Fall season doesn’t get any better than a hike in South Mesa Trailhead. Mesa Trail is incorporated with a variety of trails. The trailhead is on the north side of Eldorado Springs Drive. What makes Mesa Trail so great is the trails with intense blazing red sumac. It’s definitely a reason to hit the trail.
Be sure to consult OSMP.org for trail conditions and temporary closures.
Ride a bike
Another unique way to experience Boulder’s fall colors is to ride a bike. With refreshing autumn weather, you’ll surely be enticed to get on your bike. Try the Peak-to-Peak Scenic and Historic Byway toward Estes Park or Highway 119 toward Nederland for some awe-inspiring views.
A picturesque mountain town at the base of the Rockies, it’s no wonder that Boulder is a cyclist’s paradise. Aside from being one of the “Best Bike Cities in the US,” Boulder boasts hundreds of miles of bike paths, nearby access to world-class mountain biking trails such as Walker Ranch and over 300 days of sunshine a year. Meanwhile, the Boulder Creek Path is a great leaf-peeping destination with trees along its banks. This beautiful path runs near campus and all of the way to Boulder Canyon.
If you are a first-time visitor, you can have your guide create a custom tour for you. You can contact Pedego Boulder- Electric Bike Tours & Rentals, Beyond Boulder Adventures, or Boulder Area Bicycle Adventures. They offer a year-round invigorating journey by bicycle to cover a huge range of outdoor attractions.
After a long extreme outdoor day, you can kick back at one of Boulder’s microbreweries. You can quickly quench your whole-day exhaustion by grabbing a post-ride beer at one of Boulder’s many microbreweries overlooking the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains – a magnificent view to indulge in a beer.
Boulder and beer are more or less synonymous, that is why Boulder’s breweries introduce their fall concoctions at this time of year. Brewery names include Avery, Upslope, Asher and Boulder Beer Co. They also offer a FREE public tour to get a behind-the-scenes look at the barrel-aging cellar and brewhouse. So be sure to catch that (especially the tasters) if your favorite thing is beer! Attend the Boulder Oktoberfest at the Boulder Civic Area and experience a German festival featuring live music, entertainment, contests, and amazing food!
Speaking of amazing food! Boulder’s restaurants offer a wide variety of incredible fall food classics. For one full week, more than 50 of Boulder’s top restaurants offer a special three-course, prix-fixe menu. Check out Boulder County Restaurant Week. Whether you’re looking for a quick grab and go lunch or a four-star dining experience, there are culinary choices for every palate and budget.
Attend Fall Festival
The annual Fall Fest on the Pearl Street Mall is the most highly anticipated event in Boulder. It signifies the closing of summer and embracing the change into a new season. Although the Annual Downtown Boulder Fall Fest has just ended, there’s still no obstruction for your partygoer-soul not to celebrate.
Boulder nightlife is teeming with venues that host to musical talent galore. Granted that Boulder has plenty of breweries and distilleries, but their nightlife is unmatchable. Visit Bohemian Biergarten if your mood is up for an authentic European pub with killer live music. You can also opt for a cozy, non-traditional vibe at the Rayback Collective which has a lengthy bar counter and features live music all day and night.
What’s more is that you can attend trade shows such as the Boulder Market at the Central Park. You will find over 75 vendors featuring affordable visual art, high-quality handmade items, and unique treasures sold from a plethora of local merchants. You will have the opportunity to meet and talk with the artists, enjoy a live musical performance, play in the park along the Boulder Creek, and entertain your family for free. In addition to great shopping, there will also be a live concert at each market starting at noon.
Check out the Boulder Farmers Market
In the mood to experience Boulder like a local? Located near Pearl Street, Boulder Farmers Market occurs every Wednesday evening and Saturday mornings throughout the fall. As the largest and the #1 Farmers’ Market in the U.S., shoppers are guaranteed the best selection of locally grown, seasonal products available in Boulder County, most of which is organically or naturally grown/produced. Visiting the Boulder Farmers Market has become a weekly ritual (a social event rather) for Boulderites. They also get to meet and learn directly from the farmer how their food was grown, when it was picked, how to keep it fresh and, in many cases, new ideas on how to prepare and enjoy it.
The Wednesday afternoon market starts up at 4pm, while the Saturday Farmers Market opens at 8am. The outdoor food court provides a place to relax and meet up with friends before or after shopping at the market. In addition to the regular produce, gourmet food products and the food court, the Wednesday Market now includes a beer and wine garden featuring Colorado wines and local craft beer.
With so many amazing events throughout the year, there’s always something special happening in Boulder, Colorado! Whether you have already planned your Boulder getaway, be sure to include these things on your Boulder bucket list this fall season and don’t forget to share it with your friends.