Southwestern Guesthouses on 265 Acres
near Silver City, New Mexico
overlooking Bear Creek and the Gila Wilderness

Casitas de Gila Nature Blog

Fall Color in Southwest New Mexico


fall color in southwest new mexico

Late October and early November are a gorgeous time here at Casitas de Gila Guesthouses in Southwest New Mexico. With cool nights reaching down to near-frosty levels and daytime temperatures bouncing up into the high 70s or low 80s, the leaves on the cottonwoods, sycamores, willows, and ash reach their peak colors during this annual two- to three-week passage into Fall. In addition to the effects of the wide temperature swings, the brilliance and saturation of color in the canyon varies from year to year, depending upon the amount of Summer rain. Too little and the colors are washed out and pale; too much and the leaves just turn shades of brown. But when the temperature swings and rainfall amounts are just right … well, looking down on Bear Creek canyon from the Casitas above is a marvelous sight to behold. Indeed, it is a river of gold. And so it is this year!

No matter what time of day, or wherever you are at the Casitas, the golden glow emanating from Bear Creek canyon demands your attention and envelops you. Emerging from your Casita in the morning, the canyon’s radiating warmth draws the eye and embraces one’s Soul …

View from Casitas de los Arboles
View from Casita de los Arboles
View from Casita de los Pajaros
View from Casita de los Pajaros

View from Casita de Sol y la Luna
View from Casita del Sol y la Luna

View from Casita de las Flores
View from Casita de las Flores
View from Casita de los Animalitos
View from Casita de los Animalitos

View from the Hot Tub
View from the hot tub

fall color near Silver City, New Mexico

O come! the radiant Colors entreat … O come! and along the trails we’ll meet!

Just make your way north down the hillside trail …

Or maybe head south, where the high cliffs prevail …

fall color along Bear Creek in New Mexico

Passing quietly along the floodplain path, the brilliant sun filters down through still-shaded corridors, creating a complex mosaic of light and shadow …

fall color in southwest New Mexico

To suddenly give way to a clearing of gold and orange brilliance …

Continuing on, it is almost as if the falling leaves are once again speaking out in a faint but enticing way …

Along the Creek you’ll find special places, where silence reigns and Nature’s beauty graces.

fall color near Silver City, New Mexico

And amongst the fallen leaves a hammock is found waiting. One cannot resist the temptation to pause, lay back, and watch the leaves fluttering down from the ancient cottonwood above, like so many giant golden snowflakes …

full moon in southwest new mexico

Of course, not everyone is an early riser … Or if, perchance, you are one of those who has stayed up most of the night tracing the arc of a golden Harvest Moon across the dark and crystalline sky, then the golden leaves will be still be there for your personal afternoon delight later in the day …

fall on Bear Creek at Casitas de Gila Guesthouses

Not to worry, dear weary guest; just sleep away the morning gold in bed, and catch the afternoon show instead! For, indeed, as some connoisseurs of bright leaf attest, it is then when light and shadow are at their exquisite best! …

The Creek’s still waiting down below, your morning’s absence it didn’t mind …
And while much afternoon brilliance still remains …

fall color along bear creek

The shadows deeper now you’ll find …
The hammock, too, waits for you still …
Until once again you must climb up that hill …

October Bear Creek Gold 2012

brilliant fall cottonwoods in southwest new mexico