The golden oranges and yellows of the aspen trees of Colorado are world-famous. For about two weeks in the fall, the sides of the mountains glow gold. The light streaming through these trees is about the closest thing I've come to magic in my life.
I never get tired of it, no matter how many years I photograph them. Most aspen will change color in the first two weeks of October. The yellow can be seen for miles and completely change whole hillsides into seas of yellow. Nothing is more amazing.
Often, one or two stands don't turn in those first magical weeks of October. They stay green just a little bit longer than the rest. This gives us the opportunity to capture that brilliant, beautiful gold juxtaposed with the icy white of the first snow of the year.
That is what happened the day I captured this image. I was driving over the San Juan Mountains in Southern Colorado in the first wet snowstorm of the year. Ice was lacing the branches of the trees that had already lost their leaves. One stand of aspen was still in its full regalia of gold. I always hunger for each year to see that clash of seasons, that rare contrast of fall and winter in harmony.
I had to use my long lens to capture this as it was way up the mountainside. I must have looked crazy on the side of the highway in the snow, but how could I pass this one up? I was ecstatic to be there with my lens in front of the gorgeous scene.
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Dimitri Vasileiou • Editor