The Perfect Fall Road Trip in Colorado!

Colorado is a gorgeous place for a road trip no matter the time of year. However the fall season brings cool brisk air and color to the Rocky Mountains. In order to catch the best fall colors from the changing aspen trees in the high mountains, the best time to road trip through Colorado is mid-September to early October. This particular road trip is on one of Colorado’s most popular and scenic roads, Interstate 70, which runs from Denver to Grand Junction. These stops make for the perfect fall road trip on this iconic highway. 

Fuel up on Caffeine at Bean Fosters

Your first stop on I-70 will be a coffee shop in the town of Golden. Bean Fosters is the perfect place to fuel up on caffeine for the journey ahead. Snag a great coffee from single-origin coffee beans or choose to drink a specialty hot tea. This locally-owned and operated coffee shop also doubles as a bookstore with over 10,000 books for sale. Grab a book and a sweet treat to go before hitting the road. 

Take a scenic detour to Echo Lake

If the weather is good, take a scenic stop at Echo Lake, which is only a 25-minute detour from I-70 along Mount Evans Scenic Byway. Mount Evans is Colorado’s highest mountain. Although the summit of this massive mountain can be reached by car during the summer, the summit closes in early September. However this byway remains open up to Echo Lake during the fall and winter months. Echo Lake is at 10,500 feet, making it one of the highest bodies of water in the state. You’re sure to catch some gorgeous views of fall foliage here.

Break for lunch at Smokin’ Yards BBQ

Smokin’ Yards BBQ, located along I-70 in Idaho Springs, is a popular pit stop for hungry motorists. Serving up southern barbecue and home cooked sides, it’s the perfect place to refuel for your road adventure. From brisket to pulled pork to burnt ends, you’ll definitely be full at this spot known to be one of the best barbecue places in the Centennial State. 

Hike to Hanging Lake

After a two-hour drive west on I-70 from Smokin’ Yards BBQ, you’re probably ready to stretch your legs. Therefore enjoy the cool autumn air by hitting up one of Colorado’s most popular hikes, Hanging Lake. This moderately challenging hike is only 2.8 miles roundtrip but will be an uphill walk bringing you to a beautiful lake and waterfall. 

Soak and sleep at Glenwood Hot Springs Resort

After a long day of beautiful Colorado scenery, a stay at Glenwood Hot Springs Resort is sure to be relaxing. Rest your sore hiking muscles in the world’s largest hot springs pool, located at Glenwood Hot Springs Resort. This 107-room lodge is located in downtown Glenwood Springs, so dining, shopping and bars are only a short walk away. 

Have a nightcap at Glenwood Canyon Brewing Co.

Enjoy a great local brew along with dinner at this local brewpub that is only a 10-minute walk from Glenwood Hot Springs Resort. There are 24 beers on tap at Glenwood Canyon Brewing Co. Now this brewery actually closes at 10 p.m. If you’re looking for a bar that is open later, simply walk to Doc Holliday’s Saloon, which is one of the only bars open late every night in Glenwood Springs. And luckily, Doc Holliday’s Saloon is only a block away from Glenwood Canyon Brewing Co. 

Eat breakfast at Daily Bread

Daily Bread is one of the most popular places to have breakfast and brunch in Glenwood Springs. This restaurant is the perfect start to your morning as you plan the big day ahead of you. The menu is complete with breakfast favorites from banana pancakes to crepes to even huevos rancheros. Although serving American favorites, Daily Bread also features a number of Polish dishes too. 

Pick apples at Fruit Baskets Orchards

After your filling breakfast at Daily Bread, hit I-70 again and drive toward Grand Junction. After an hour and half, you should reach Fruit Baskets Orchards, where you can pick your own apples. Apples are ripe during the fall months, therefore this is the perfect time to pick them. This you-pick orchard has 18 different varieties of apples, along with peaches, cherries, plums and nectarines. 

View gorgeous scenery at Colorado National Monument

One of the most scenic spots in the area is at Colorado National Monument, only a short drive outside of Grand Junction. Drive on the Historic Rim Rock Drive or choose to hike over 40 miles of trails here. However if you just want to stop and enjoy the natural landscape, there are a number of picnic areas to soak in this scenic spot. 

Get scared at Studt’s Dark Acres Haunted Corn Maze

End your road trip with a fright at Studt’s Dark Acres Haunted Corn Maze. Once day turns to night, the corn maze at Studt’s turns terrifying. You’ll be running through the maze as there is a scary attraction around every bend. Make sure to arrive early at this popular haunted corn maze.

This text was created by the author with the assistance of GPT-3, a large-scale language generation model developed by OpenAI. The author reviewed, edited, and revised the draft language to their satisfaction and is fully responsible for the content of this publication.

Share your favorites!
Colorado Search
Best Things To Do Near You
Best Things To Do Near You

Colorado Symphony

1:00 PM
Boettcher Concert Hall, Denver, CO
Learn More

OLWA - Shakespeare Student Play

2:00 PM
Corpus Christi Catholic Academy, Colorado Springs, CO
Learn More

Shakespeare Student Play

2:00 PM
Corpus Christi Catholic Academy, Colorado Springs, CO
Learn More
Show More
Best Places To Go Near You
Best Places To Go Near You
US highway 24, Lake George, CO
About Us: Indigo Mountain Nature Center is a sanctuary for captive-born wildlife, exotic and alternative pets nestled in the mountains west of Col... Read More
2000 Old Stage Road, Florissant, CO
Mission Statement:To provide uncompromising customer service, quality accommodations and food, and educational programs that enhance a sense of sel... Read More
6249 S Turkey Creek Rd, Morrison, CO
It’s just a short drive west of Denver into the foothills to spend the day among our kid-sized buildings, riding the train, enjoying the fres... Read More
P.O. Box 523, Evergreen, CO
The Evergreen Nature Center aspires to foster contagious enthusiasm and life-long respect for the natural world by providing fun and inspiring educ... Read More
Bergen Parkway and Rocky Village Drive, Evergreen, CO
The Triple Bypass Bicycle Ride is recognized as one of the premier cycling events in the nation. A one or two-day cycling event, celebrating its 29... Read More
3000 W Carson Drive, Littleton, CO
Mission Statement:Our mission is to help people find meaning and value in natural open space through direct positive experiences.About Us: South P... Read More
910 Colorow Road, Golden, CO
About Us: Lookout Mountain Nature Center staff and volunteer naturalists inspire kids and adults to connect with the natural world and learn more ... Read More
987 1/2 Lookout Mountain Road, Golden, CO
Our Mission:The Buffalo Bill Museum and Grave, a facility owned and operated by the City and County of Denver, exists to preserve the memory of Wil... Read More
5069 Pikes Peak Highway, Cascade, CO
Pikes Peak - America's Mountain! The Pikes Peak Highway entrance is conveniently located 15 minutes west of Colorado Springs on Highway 24. The bea... Read More
5050 Pikes Peak Highway, Cascade, CO
Santa’s Workshop/North Pole is a Christmas themed family amusement park that has been in existence since 1956.Christmas music fills the air a... Read More
2304 Cadet Dr, Ste 2300, U S A F Academy, CO
The Air Force Academy is both a military organization and a university. Much of the Academy is set up like most other Air Force bases, particularly... Read More
320 Chicago Creek Road, Idaho Springs, CO
About The Bob Cook Memorial Mt. Evans Hill climb is an iconic bicycle race that takes place on the highest paved road in the United States..It was ... Read More
17155 West 44th Avenue, Golden, CO
About us A replica of an 1880s-style depot, the museum building houses thousands of rare old photographs, artifacts and documents illustrating the ... Read More
9388 Hwy 67, Cripple Creek, CO
Descend underground as you partake in the only 1,000 foot vertical shaft gold mine tour in the USA.Experience the "Old West" as it was for hard roc... Read More
520 East Carr Street, Cripple Creek, CO
History:On June 28th , 1967, Dr. John M. Birmingham opened the Cripple Creek and Victor Narrow Gauge Railroad for business. The CC&V RR has bee... Read More
Show More
Select a Colorado town to find
the Best Things-To-Do and Places To Go around you
Broomfield County
Hinsdale County
Mineral County
Ouray County
Rio Blanco County
San Juan County