Fall Colors Along the Greenbelt

Dirt path adjacent to greenbelt with golden cottonwood trees.

Many flock to the High Country in fall to take in the spectacle of the changing Aspens. And when the weather cooperates and a freeze does not come too soon, what a gorgeous spectacle it is to behold! I’ve been blessed to see this both in Colorado and in New Mexico. The mountainside drive up to Aspen Vista Trail above Santa Fe is a visual feast and highly popular! And the Sandia Crest Trail above Albuquerque is equally as beautiful in the fall.

Closer to home, the fall colors along the greenbelt have been equally as beautiful. Perhaps the rain we had in late summer/early fall and mild temps over the last few weeks made for some brilliant colors as well. Just walking around the neighborhood there have been golden blasts, bright oranges and deep reds. Mother Nature has been putting on quite a show around town this season. You have been able to literally walk out your door to see these vivid colors. No long drive necessary!

Mild Temps and Sunny Days for October

I love going to the Xeriscape Gardens to capture fall imagery. However, my new location not only presents many of the colorful trees in the neighborhood, it also lies very close to the Greenbelt. It’s a wonderful thing when you don’t have to drive to get there! With all the crazies on the roads these days, I REALLY like not having to drive to a destination. So with camera in hand and bright blue skies, long meandering walks in search of photo ops is enticing. Plus it affords time with my other lens – something I need much more practice with! 

Golden cottonwoods in fall with rustic wood fence.
Golden cottonwood trees with rustic, old wooden post fence.

The mild temps and sunny days have held for most of October. This allowed for multiple forays along the trails and big, cottonwood trees in their fall prime. With golden yellow leaves and their immense girth they make for quite a contrast against the blue sky. 

There are old rustic wooden post fences (I love photographing these) with big, golden cottonwoods as a backdrop How grateful I am to live so close to such a glorious fall landscape.

Colorful fall trees with reflections in water
Colorful fall trees line this pond with their vivid reflections in the water.

Meandering below the tress and along the creek is magical. The ponds lined with colorful trees leave their reflections in the water. I love this scenery as reflections like this give the illusion of an alternate universe. Ok – maybe that’s my sci-fi mind kicking in – but I’m sticking with it!  

Trees along creek of greenbelt in fall.
Trees along greenbelt creek in fall.

You can quickly get immersed in the sights and even smells of fall.

The creek that runs along the greenbelt moves gently with its slow pace. The sun glistening with the reflections of trees in its waters. I’m told there are beavers somewhere? Their teeth marks left in some of the fallen trees.

The fallen leaves – some past their prime -crunching beneath your feet. The distinctive scent that invites you to inhale deeply. All your senses are alive.

Mild temps aside, I find myself craving Hot Cocoa and Gingersnap cookies!

Some Time for Contemplation…

While the trees and fall colors along the greenbelt pose endless opportunities to explore, there are other times to take a seat and be still. Little did I realize I had already walked 6 miles so this bench offered a time out for a sip of water and a snack.

Wooden bench with golden cottonwood trees
This old wooden bench with golden trees as a backdrop invites you to take a seat.

It was also an invitation for quiet contemplation knowing winter and the crazy holidays will be here soon enough.

To be present in the moment and appreciate the magnificence that Nature has provided during this colorful fall season 🙂

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