5 Great Photography Locations in Aspen

It always amazes me how much technology has advanced over the last few decades. Going back to my university days (in the mid to late 80s), taking decent photographs involved an immense amount of effort. In those days, everything was recorded on film, which was very restrictive. Unless you had a decent darkroom, processing was often expensive and time-consuming.

Fast forward to the present day, and we live in a digital Instagram age, where images can be edited and shared instantaneously. Most smartphones are now equipped with a decent camera and are exceptionally portable. Therefore, any budding photographer can document all their precious moments.

I wouldn’t profess to be the most seasoned traveller; and as a student, I sacrificed vacation time to pay off debts (incurred by social activities). However, in the last decade, I have been fortunate to visit some wonderful locations and also got the opportunity to emigrate from the UK to Australia and now have dual citizenship.

For those touring the United States, I cannot recommend enough that you take the time to visit Aspen. This region is synonymous with its picturesque beauty and therefore attracts aspiring photographers from around the globe. Here are five great locations that illustrate this point perfectly.

Maroon Bells

Maroon Bells is a series of wine coloured bell-shaped peaks that climax at an imposing 14,000 feet. This majestic sight is a favorite among photographers around the world because of its amazing views. Highlights include colourful meadows, aspen trees, and six incredible scenic hiking trails.

Smuggler Mountain Observation Deck

Smuggler Mountain Observation Deck offers avid photographers breathtaking panoramic views of Aspen Mountain, Independence Pass, and the Roaring Fork Valley. This scenic trail is approximately 1.5 miles away from the trailhead, and attracts enthusiastic hikers, runners, mountain bike riders, etc.

Dancing Fountain

I have always been mesmerised by the aesthetic of water, and it is (in my opinion) what makes Dancing Fountain so appealing. This amazing art installation was created by Nick DeWolf and Travis Fulton in 1979. Photographers love the symphony of synchronised jets that almost appear as if they are choreographed.   

John Denver Sanctuary

The John Denver Sanctuary is situated in the heart of Aspen, next to Rio Grande Park and near the Roaring Fork River. Ultimately, this is why aspiring photographers delight at taking images to share on their social media sites. The Song Garden pays homage to the legendary singer by etching his lyrics into circular positioned native river boulders.

Red Butte Trail

Red Butte Trail is a 0.9-mile long nature track that is primarily used for hiking, walking, trail running, and scenic picnics. Optimum times are between May and October. However, because of the magical ever-changing views, I could envisage this would be a photographer’s delight during any season.