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Are Colorado mountain wildflowers at their color peak?

Mountain dryad, a member of the rose family, grows on rocky alpine slopes.
Mountain dryad, a member of the rose family, grows on rocky alpine slopes.
Photo credit: Via CC 2.0 license, flickr.com/photos/sgilsdorf

2010 is shaping up to be a great year for wildflowers in the central Colorado mountains. The late snow, colder spring temperatures and daily rain showers in the past few weeks have produced lush wildflower meadows and colorful high-mountain slopes.

But are the flowers at their peak?

Yes and no. Below 9,000 ft. in altitude, this will likely be the most colorful week of the year. Wild roses, alpine daisies, wild strawberries, paintbrushes, penstemons, blue flax, purple fringe, sunflowers, black-eyed susans and golden banners are prevalent in the foothills and on the lower mountain hills.

Above 9,000 ft., we are still about a week to 10 days away from the wildflower peak. For instance, the gorgeous purple fireweed, lupines and violet mint clover have just begun to bloom. And I’ve yet to see any arctic sandwort or columbines, which tend to blanket some of the trails near here in late July.

NOTE: This wildflower report is only for the central mountains along and east of the Divide; the southern and northern areas of the state may have different wildflower populations right now.

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Comments

  • G 4 years ago

    Great info. I was just planning whether to hike this weekend or wait.

  • Susan Rogers 4 years ago

    Here in Golden we have some Indian paintbrush on South Table Mountain. It comes back every year in the same spot.

  • Herman 4 years ago

    Great info !

  • Linda 4 years ago

    It is beautiful here in the Black Hills, too.

  • sue 4 years ago

    Thanks for sharing all your knowledge on the flowers and so many more things of interest!

  • Kit 4 years ago

    Any idea how Shrine Pass is now with wildflowers?

  • Idaho Spg Mtn Living Examiner 4 years ago

    Hi Kit, Sorry, but I've not been up to Shrine Pass lately to report on those wildflowers. I do know that the flowers are peaking right now (July 19) above 10,000 ft. A friend just took some amazing photos at Lake Isabelle - Indian Peaks Wilderness area.

  • DN 4 years ago

    WOW! Great info!