Maroon Bells

Snowmass CO 81654
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The Maroon Bells are two fourteeners located in Colorado's Elk Mountains. The two peaks, Maroon Peak and North Maroon Peak, are the 27th and 50th highest peaks in Colorado respectively. The area they are nestled in, Maroon Creek Valley, is considered to be the "most photographed spot in Colorado."

Parking and public transportation
Shuttle buses can be accessed at Aspen Highlands, two miles from the mountains. Free parking is available. Bus tickets are $6 with departures every half hour. 

Buses can also be accessed from the Rubey Park Transportation Center in downtown Aspen. This bus is free and departs every 20 minutes starting on the hour. Accessibility by car is limited. 

Best and worst time to go The Maroon Bells 
Maroon Creek road is closed in the winter and the only way to access the area is with cross country skis or snowmobile. If these activities tickle your fancy, this could either be considered a good or bad thing. Contact the US Forest Service at (970) 925-3445 for more information regarding road closures. 

If you chose not to pay for a shuttle into the area, be prepared to pay a $10 per vehicle fee. There are no other admission fees associated. 

Must see/do at The Maroon Bells 
Hike the Maroon Lake Scenic Trail featuring waterfalls, crystal clear lakes and breath taking views of the Maroon Bell peaks. The trip lasts around 2 hours and 15 minutes round trip. 

Other places to visit near The Maroon Bell
Glenwood Springs, once named the "Most Fun Town in America" is only one hour from Maroon Bells. The hot springs, located in the center of town, is considered the world's largest. 

Insider tip for visitors to The Maroon Bells 
If you want to summit all the way to the top of one of these "fourteeners," start early, pack lots of water and don't be alarmed if you experience a mild case of altitude sickness -- especially if you have not hiked in Colorado before. 

Author's bio: Andy Thomas is a Colorado native. He is a journalist and touring musician. He has most likely slept on a floor in your hometown.