DENVER (CBS4) – Pictures of fall color are starting to flow into CBS4 and Colorado’s Weather Center as this year’s color seems to be right on time.

(credit: CBS4)

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The peak of fall color moves in two directions across Colorado, shifting from north to south between late September and mid-October.

Colorado Fall Colors 2016

It also shifts in elevation, starting in elevations at or above 9,000 feet in mid-September and showing up below 6,000 feet in early to mid-October.

WHY COLOR HAPPENS

As the days grow shorter trees and shrubs prepare for winter by shutting down the production of chlorophyll, which is what gives leaves their green color. That process allows other colors inside a leaf to show through. The result is a brilliant display including shades of red, yellow, orange and gold.

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leaves

Colorado’s most famous tree to capture on film is the aspen, which stand out brilliantly when mixed with other tree species, including evergreens.

PHOTO GALLERY: Colorado Fall Colors 2016

A goal of many photographers is trying to capture that perfect view of “Colorado Gold” on a clear crisp morning where you can see the contrast of a deep blue sky in the background.

Colorado Fall Colors 2016

A dusting of fresh snow on nearby mountain peaks can be the icing on the cake for that perfect snapshot.

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COLORADO’S WEATHER CENTER: Fall Color Guide