Since the day I got into photography years ago, this has been one of the places on my proverbial bucket list that I have wanted to shoot. The iconic, scenic and breathtaking views of Maroon Bells near Snowmass, Colorado.


Now that I am back home in Colorado, I am going to make a point to shoot this location... Along with hundreds, if not thousands of other photographers. To me this location perfectly sums up Colorado. Rocky Mountain highs, golden aspen trees, frosted pine trees that reflect off of clear lake water like a pristine mirror as the blue sky you only see when you are this high up in elevation make for the perfect photo.

But... How do you get there? From USDA's website, they give you all of the information on how you can get to Maroon Bells.

From June until October 2nd, you have to take a shuttle to Maroon Bells. The shuttle runs from 8 am to 5 pm daily with arrivals and departures every 20 minutes. The cost of a shuttle ticket is $8 per person.

After October 2nd you will be able to have vehicle access. however, you will have to pay for a day pass for $10 or a National Parks pass. and then a short hike to the lake will have you in a Rocky Mountain heaven.

If you are leaving from Northern Colorado, it will be a little more than just a day trip as this location is 230 miles each way to and from Fort Collins.


How to shoot the Maroon Bells

Bring your phone... Obviously because you are going to want to Instagram it! But... If you really want to get the most out of your trip, you will want to have a digital SLR camera with interchangeable lenses. A wide angle lens is what I would suggest for taking in the most of the scenery. I have a Tamron 17-50 mm lens that I use to shoot most of my landscape photography.

Setting your camera to manual mode will give you the most control over your photographs. Shoot with an ISO of 100 for the least amount of noise on your photos with aperture of f8 to f16 for the best depth of field and set your shutter speed accordingly depending on the time of day you are shooting. Additionally, make sure that your photo format is set to RAW as you will have more data to work with in post processing.

If you don't have a digital SLR camera, don't sweat it as you can still take breathtaking photos of the Maroon Bells wit ha point and shoot or your phone.

Bring plenty of memory, extra batteries and the most important accessory of them all... A tripod! The tripod will give your photo stability beyond your ability to hold the camera as still as possible and give you sharp, in focus photos.