In late September, I returned to Telluride for the 4th Annual Festival of Cars & Colors. Much like last year, I was immediately swept away by the colorful trees, the incredible mountains, and all the beautiful cars. Even two days before the show, we happened to spot some really special stuff that was just out and about. That confirms just how special and unreal this place truly is.
This festival boasts a variety of activities for attendees over the course of 3 days - though it's worth it to show up a day early so you can register and join in on the free eats from local restaurants. Friday marks the launch of the festivities, with a morning meet up that shares everything you have to look forward to that day; information about the road rally, the poker run, the medallion hunt, and much more. Since the rally is my primary interest for the day, I can't speak to how awesome the rest of the events for that day are - but who wouldn't want to cruise through the San Juan Mountains with a variety of super cars, vintage race cars, and other fun luxury vehicles? The sights are worth the gas and the friends you meet along the way make the whole drive worthwhile.
We closed out Friday with a car show on Telluride's main drag, Colorado Avenue. It draws in spectators from all over the state, as well as the locals. Just when you think you've figured out what to expect at a show like this, you'll catch a curve ball here. While I'm not much of an event photographer, I did grab a shot my favorite three vehicles during the show.
Saturday kicks off with a free breakfast at the Telluride Airport. Have you ever had breakfast on the tarmac of an airport sitting over nine thousand feet above sea level? It's not a bad place to watch the sun rise over the mountains. And when you're finished, you're free to walk the ramp and check out the old warbirds display - including checking out the interiors and even signing up for a trip to the clouds inside one of the planes. Of course, if planes aren't your thing, you can swing into the hangar and get a preview of Saturday night's reception lineup. This year included a hyper car display and Danny Thompson's Challenger 2.
For those who are left wanting more, Saturday also offers an American Concours event located at the Telluride golf course. If you haven't been to a car show on the side of a mountain, I urge you to consider it. Between the cars and the views, you couldn't possibly be disappointed. If you think that's all, think again. The festival coordinators have also managed to pack in another car show back downtown on Colorado Avenue. Sure, you may catch some of the same vehicles spotted during last night's show - but there'll be plenty of other vehicles out on display, too.
Capping off the 3 day festival, Sunday's schedule puts attendees back out at the Telluride golf course for the International Concours event. All those fancy Ferraris, Lamborghinis and other European cars you've seen cruising around town the last few days? This is where you'll get a chance to see them up close and personal. And for the fans looking for things on two wheels, both days of the Colorado Ave show and Concours events include vintage and restored motorcycles.
I know this sounds like a great big, multi day car show and, to some, that may be all it is. However, for the folks who enjoy meeting new friends, sharing their passions, and traveling to incredibly beautiful places - this is it. The Telluride Festival of Cars & Colors is more than an automotive event. It's an experience. Something to share with friends, old and new. There is no place on earth like Telluride. Don't believe me? Come see for yourself at next year's show!
Gear: Canon 6D, Canon 24-70 2.8L, Canon 70-200 2.8L IS I, Tiffen CPL, Sunpak Tripod
Post Processing: Adobe Camera Raw & Adobe Photoshop