The Denver Botanic Gardens is located at 1005 York Street.
Wonderful opportunities for flower and butterfly photos. The displays change throughout the seasons as different flowers come into bloom, so it is deserving of several visits throughout the year.
The Butterfly Pavilion is located at 6252 West 104th Ave. Westminster, CO.
An opportunity to get great closeups of a multitude of different butterflies. Monopods only, no tripods. Arrive at opening time to avoid crowds.
The zoo entrance is located on 23rd Avenue between York St. and Colorado Blvd.
Open every day of the year :
The Denver Zoo houses a large collection of animals. The trick is to create photographs that don't look as if they were taken at the zoo.
The main entrance to Chatfield State Park is located one mile south of C-470 on Wadsworth.
A valid State Parks Pass is needed for ALL motor vehicles entering the park. Daily pass: $8
Deer, elk, bald eagles, and bear are among the wildlife that has been spotted in the park. There are about 26 miles of trails in Chatfield State Park, 12 miles of those trails are paved. Summer wildflowers are abundant.
Hot air balloons are launched from the park nearly every summer weekend morning and offer great photo ops.
Red Rocks Park is located near Morrison, Colorado, 15 miles west of Denver.
Visit at sunrise to get great lighting on gorgeous red rock formations and the chance to sight wildlife in the area.
The park is located south of Chatfield Resvervoir and SP in the southwest corner of the metro area.
The park is filled with dramatic red-rock formations and a host of wildlife ranging from black bears to mule deer. Hike the trails to capture one of the many beautiful views.
The Garden of the Gods is located at 1805 N 30th Street (at Gateway Rd.) in Colorado Springs.
Garden of the Gods Park has a wealth of creative photo opportunities. You can take great photos on walks from the Gateway or Balanced Rock parking lots or hike some of the many trails for even more possibilities.
Located in southwest Colorado Springs on the side of Cheyenne Mountain, Cheyenne Mountain Zoo is situated just above the Broadmoor Hotel.
Located in Colorado Springs, it is less visited by people here in the Denver area, but a great location for animal photos.
Exit I-25 at exit 141 - US24, going west. Drive about 10 miles on US24, then take the Pikes Peak Toll Road exit and follow the signs to get to the tollgate.
With a toll road that goes to the summit at 14,110 feet, The photo opportunities are endless. Wildfowers, wildlife, and mountain vistas to name a few.
At the top, the north side of the summit offers the most dramatic views, with a sharp drop off into the aptly named Bottomless Pit. Start there, walk to the far side near the High Altitude Research Station for a look at the Continental Divide, and end at the viewing platform on the south side.
Parking area on N Cheyenne Cañon Rd inside North Cheyenne Cañon City Park.
Just a short walk from the visitor's center, Helen Hunt Falls is only one of several waterfalls located in the park.
The entire park is a very scenic area and Helen Hunt Falls is quite photogenic!
From Helen Hunt Falls, follow the trail that takes you up to the bridge and over Helen Hunt Falls. About .3 mile on a moderately steep trail to Silver Cascade Falls and takes just over 10 minutes to hike up there.
Eldorado Canyon is located about 5 miles southwest of Boulder.
On weekends and holidays from May through September, the entire park often reaches full vehicle capacity and additional vehicles are only allowed entrance periodically, as space becomes available.
Located just outside of Boulder, rock climbers from around the world come to assail the steep canyon walls with the scenic South Boulder Creek at their base. Mule deer, elk, black bear, bobcat, red fox, coyote and mountain lion inhabit the foothills in and around Eldorado Canyon. Large populations of bats breed in the caves in the Inner Canyon. Try some of the trails. Get some photos of the climbers.
Take Highway 93 north from Golden one mile to Golden Gate Canyon Road. Turn left and continue for 13 miles to the park.
Only 30 miles from Denver, Golden Gate Canyon offers more than 12,000 acres of dense forest, rocky peaks, and aspen-rimmed meadows laced with miles of trails and the Panorama Point Scenic Overlook, where one can see 100 miles of the Continental Divide.
Golden Gate State Park provides a home for a great number and variety of wildlife, providing the perfect place for wildlife watching and wildlife photography. Among the larger animals are moose, bighorn sheep, black bear, mule deer and elk.
Panorama Point is approximately 5 miles from the Visitor Center (in the summer when Mountain Base Rd is open). In winter, continue on Hwy 46 west 3 miles to Hwy 119. Go north on Hwy 119 4 miles to mile marker 15.5 and look for Gap Rd on your right. Follow Gap Rd past the CG to the spectacular vistas found at the point.
From Panorama Point continue on the dirt road to the Lazy Squaw Ranch. Find the Lazy Squaw Spire on the hill behind the Ranch. This is one of the many rock climbing opportunities in the park and makes a fine photo op as well.
11 miles NW of SH58/SH93 in Golden to the parking area.
About 18 miles of multi-use trails are located on White Ranch, a Jefferson Co. Open Space park, ranging from easy to strenuous. The park encompasses open meadows, forested foothills, a pristine canyon, buttes, rock formations and Van Bibber Creek along the southern border.
Terrific vista of Denver and the plains beyond. Wildflower filled meadows. The park is noted for a variety of wildlife including deer, bear, mountain lion, bobcat, elk, grouse and wild turkey.
South on I-25 to exit 161 - SH105 in Monument.
This route winds its way to an elevation of 9,443 feet and ends at its junction with the Rampart Range Rd. There are plenty of rocks and ruts on the Monument side, high clearance recommended!
In addition to the Balanced Rock, there are a LOT of large boulders laying about in the area. It's quite unusual. There are some nice vistas of Pikes Peak on the west side, abundant summer wildflowers, and decent fall foliage.
From US85/SH67 in Sedalia, drive 9.9 miles SW on SH 67 to the Rampart Range Rd.
This generally smooth, two lane road winds its way to an elevation of 9,500 feet before ending in the Garden of the Gods. In good conditions, it shoud be passable to all passenger vehicles. ATV trails parallel most of the road.
The scenery includes river meadows, rock formations, abundant summer wildflowers and impressive fall colors. Great vistas of Pikes Peak and the Colorado Springs area.
There are numerous side roads and hiking trails to explore (At your own risk!), including the Mt Herman Rd.
The trail begins by passing through several large aspen stands and continues to wind its way up through evergreen forest and around huge granite boulders. The trail ends atop a massive granite outcrop where there is a fire tower lookout, the last operating fire lookout on the front range. It can be reached by climbing the stairway up the last 200 ft. from the trail. From the tower you will have a full 360 degree view of the Rockies and the eastern plains.
$5.00 day use fee. The view from the dam is breathtaking!
From Black Hawk, drive 13.6 miles north to Rollinsville and turn west.
An all-weather gravel road which can be traveled by regular automobiles.
The road is rough due to lack of maintenance. Although not steep or loose, it is recommended that a high clearance 4wd vehicle be used.
The road to the tunnel parallels the very scenic South Boulder Creek. There are numerous pullouts for picnic areas and fishing. Wildflowers are abundant in the Tolland area.
The first section of the road is rough and narrow in spots but has some fine vistas of the South Boulder Creek valley. After the first major turn, the road becomes somewhat smoother as it climbs through the forest towards Yankee Doodle Lake. In a good year, the wildflowers in the area around the lake can be spectacular! Look for columbines on the slopes west and above the lake. The route ends at a parking area for the Forest Lakes trail. It actually continues to a dead end at the closed Needles Eye tunnel, but because of the difficulty in turning around at that point, I do not recommend traveling beyond the trailhead.
The trail to the Upper Forest Lake is about 1/2 mile in length. The lake is a beauty. It sits in a pretty cirque below the Continental Divide with water so clear you can easily see the boulders on the bottom. There's a small rock island just a few feet from shore that even has a tree growing on it. A cascade tumbles into the lake on the west shore, below the peaks.
From Nederland, drive 7.5 miles east on SH119 to the TH parking area.
Boulder Falls receives heavy visitation by tourists heading to the high country from Boulder. Boulder Falls is quite lovely and well worth the brief stop for a look at the cascading water.
You will have an excellent view of the Falls, forming where North Boulder Creek plunges approximately 70 feet to enter Middle Boulder Creek. For your safety, the area beyond the viewpoint has been closed. The rocks and water past this point are deceptively dangerous, and several people have been killed while scrambling around the falls.
From Nederland, drive about 12 miles north on SH72 to the Brainard Lake Rd then west 5.6 miles past Brainard Lake to the TH at the end of Long Lake Rd.
Brainard Lake Recreation Area fees apply during the summer operating season (typically mid/late-June through late September) $9 for a 5-day pass.
The Indian Peaks Wilderness is 76,586 acres and lies adjacent to Rocky Mountain National Park's southern boundary.
The trail travels along Long Lake and Lake Isabelle, rising about 400 ft in 2.1 miles, to reach a trail junction with the Isabelle Glacier Trail. The vicinity is simply gorgeous with the incredible backdrop of the Navajo, Apache, and Shoshoni peaks, Isabelle Glacier and the abundant summer wildflowers.
The Pawnee Pass Trail rises quickly above Lake Isabelle on switchbacks, along tumbling streams and ponds, through and above treeline. About a mile past and 900 ft above the junction, it reaches a tundra bench overlooking the Lake Isabelle valley with spectacular views of the nearby impressive peaks.
The trail leaves the bench and climbs up a steep series of rocky switchbacks to the top of the ridgeline, climbing about 700 ft in just over a mile. A 1/4 mile walk through the tundra leads to Pawnee Pass and the Continental Divide at 12,541 ft.
The view to the west from the pass is practically indescribable; jagged, needle-like spires and Pawnee Lake 1600 ft below you; Monarch Lake (10 miles by the trail beyond the pass) in the foreground; and what seems like the rest of the state in the background!