South Fork…

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This year’s fall color display is a nice reminder that everything about 2020 isn’t the worst. Above, some of the sights from partway up Cliff Lakes Trail #1831 in the White River National Forest. The trail was recently spruced up by the Blanco Ranger District with help from the Rocky Mountain Youth Corps and Colorado Mountain Club.

Lack of light, not changing weather, is the main reason that leaves change color in the fall. As days shorten, trees stop producing chlorophyll, the chemical which makes leaves green. This exposes yellow and orange pigments. In some leaves, veins connecting leaves to the tree start to close off as well, trapping sugar and turning some leaves bright red.


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