Hiking Mount Audubon: Brainard Lake Recreation Area, Colorado

To me, late September means it’s time to hit Colorado’s high country to see the Aspen turn the Rocky Mountains into shimmering gold. I love to drive the Peak-to-Peak Highway to see the show, and that makes a hike at Mount Audubon convenient. I’ve hiked this particular thirteener before (for non-Coloradans, that just means a peak over 13,000 feet). But the first time I didn’t have a video camera, so I thought I’d treat you to a brief video of my second visit.

If you want to visit Mount Audubon and throw in a good fall-foliage drive on the way, I recommend taking Coal Creek Canyon Road to Nederland, then taking the Peak-to-Peak Highway to the Brainard Lake Recreation Area. You’ll need to pay $9 for a pass. The hike starts at the Mitchell Lake Trailhead. It’s about 8 miles round trip, but relatively easy as high-altitude hikes go, and the views of the Continental Divide are a spectacular reward for the effort.  If you’d like a bit more information, check out my post on Indian Summer at Indian Peaks. But if you just want to see what makes this hike worth it, check out this video:

Hiking Mount Audubon: Brainard Lake Recreation Area, Colorado from Cara Lopez Lee on Vimeo.

4 thoughts on “Hiking Mount Audubon: Brainard Lake Recreation Area, Colorado

  1. Beth Partin


    it has been fun, although it’s a little strange staying with all these different people. Strange and fun to reconnect. It’s rainy today. I was going to photograph the cemetery in Claremont, and maybe drive around looking for leaves, but I think I will wait to see if the rain stops.

  2. Cara Lopez Lee Post author

    Thanks, Beth. Great to hear from you on the road! We did Mt Audubon last fall, but sometimes it takes me a while to edit a hiking video, so I waited until this fall to post it so it would correspond with the season. This fall we did Bierstadt, which I’ll probably post next fall.

    When I did my fall colors tour back east, I recall driving in and out of colors from greens to golds to browns, depending on the latitude and altitude. Hope you’re having fun!

  3. Beth Partin

    Cara, that video was fun. We’re in VT now, where it’s rainy—they had a dry summer here as well. There were great fall colors in the Adirondacks, but the leaves here are just beginning to change.

Comments are closed.