Wildflowers of the Gunnison Valley

Colorado Wildflowers: With above-average precipitation this winter that continued through May, we were primed and ready once summer hit for a superbloom of a magnitude not witnessed in years. Starting in early June near Almont, the steady progression of color has reached Crested Butte and beyond. If you’re interested in viewing the famous wildflowers of the Gunnison Valley then this is the year to come. Several more weeks of wildflower season will undoubtedly continue into August before fall reaches the upper elevations.

jacks cabin wildflowers near almont colorado

Paintbrush, larkspur, and sunflowers in the Almont Triangle

Have you ever enjoyed the smell of sagebrush while you reveled in the color palette of mountain wildflowers? This June the Almont Triangle started our season with a brilliant show.

wildflowers and the castles almont colorado

Paintbrush and sunflowers provide a dramatic foreground for The Castles.

As the weather turned sunny, and snow melted out near Crested Butte the wildflower display creeped slowly north.

lupine trail with lupines in full bloom

Lupine Trail displaying it’s namesake flower.

Lupine Trail off Slate River Rd. was the first place to bloom near Crested Butte. Riding or hiking this trail is the best way to experience this display.

larkspur and sunflowers in crested butte colorado

Larkspur provides the purple contrast to Mule’s Ear Sunflower’s gold.

Not far behind the Lupine bloom came the Mule’s Ear Sunflowers and Larkspur. This combo of purple and gold is one of our favorites. Larkspurs scientific genus is Delphinium, a derivative of the ancient Greek for dolphin. If you look closely you can see the resemblance between the flowers and the sea creature.

more mule's ear and larkspur

Is this real life?

As the season for afternoon thunderstorms closed in, the combination of flowers and epic sunsets set the stage for unparalleled beauty in the valley.

sunset with flowers and red lady

Sunset on Snodgrass with Red Lady in the background.

With such an amazing flower display it’s important to get out and enjoy it. Ride your bike, go for a hike, or take a trail run, but don’t forget your camera!

lower loop sunset

Sunset ride on the Lower Loop.

There’s a reason why Crested Butte is the Colorado Wildflower Capital. Remember to stay on the trail, take only pictures, and help preserve the beauty for everyone else that is visiting after you.

Author: Bryan Boyle

3 Responses to Wildflowers of the Gunnison Valley

  1. Hi Kate was right those are delphiniums they are not Larkspar so maybe correct your article thank you sincerely Andrea

  2. I was just I Crested Butte, Almont, Taylor Canyon, Spring Creek, Ohio Creek, up To Gothic, Washington Gulch, Ohio Pass, Lake Irwin and there were no flowers that looked like those pictures, so I’m assuming, that they were taken in June and early July.

    • Hey PJ, the first set of photos was taken in early June, but the last set were taken the last half of July near Brush Creek. I’m not sure what trails you hiked, but many are still great with Rustler’s Gulch being the last one I was on last Wednesday (July 31). Near the roads they are starting to fade a bit, but gaining some elevation will help folks get back into the color.

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