Lee Vining Canyon Fall Colors

Although it may not be the most popular attraction around the park, I was pleasantly surprised to find these stunning October scenes, just outside the Tioga entrance. Here are my photos of the fall colors in Lee Vining Canyon.

Stunning autumn forest waterfall (long exposure) - Lee Vining Canyon fall colors
Stunning autumn forest waterfall

Lee Vining Creek in Autumn

Observant travelers might notice a set of falls from high up on SR120 as they drive toward 395. These are in fact part of Lee Vining Creek. However, in my opinion there are much more beautiful falls within the canopy of the forest.

Lee Vining Creek Colors in October
Lee Vining Creek Colors

Simply take Poole Power Plant Rd, your first established right turn a few miles after exiting the park. Follow this road up past a few campsites. I believe the most scenic stretch pictured here is located beyond Aspen Grove campsite.

Vibrant color in the forested canyon
Vibrant forest canyon

What an incredible place to capture not only the changing colors, but also beautiful long exposure scenes along Lee Vining Creek. This scenery can literally be found right along the road, so keep driving until you find a spot that speaks to you.

I thought this particular location was the most picturesque, given the mix of all autumn colors (yellow, oranges and reds). Even plenty of nice greens still left in there!

By the way, this creekside is part of the Inyo National Forest.

Yellow Aspens

Golden Aspen tree Stand from above
Golden Aspen Stand from above

These yellow groves of aspen trees are visible down in the canyon from SR120. If you see colors like this, the timing is right – it’s worth making the trip for a closer look.

Aspen Trees With Large Pine Trunk - Lee Vining Canyon fall colors
Aspen Trees With Large Pine Tree Trunk

Yosemite (and California in general) isn’t really known for fall colors, but you can certainly find them if you know where to look. Check my eastern Sierra fall colors album for more info…

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About My Photos

The images on this website are available for licensing and/or sale as framed prints. If you’d like to purchase them for a blog, news article, or gift, feel free to contact me with the specifics. This way you’re supporting photographers such as me directly (as opposed to buying from a faceless stock photo corporation).

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– Nathan Allen

About Me

Photographer Nathan Allen

I’m Nathan Allen, photographer / creator of YosemiteParkPhotos.com (Yosemite Photos) and international travel site I Dreamed Of This. In truth, I lived in San Francisco, New York, & Singapore…but nothing compares to life in the mountains. I share my experiences HERE.