AMERICAN FORK — Many federal lands remain closed during the shutdown, but American Fork's Alpine Loop is a prime spot to see Utah's fall colors.
Normally a drive up the 20 mile Alpine Loop will set you back a few dollars, but during the government shutdown the scenic drive is free.
"Let the parks be closed, there is beauty in our own backyard right here," said Michael Porter, Alpine Loop visitor.
Liz Frandsen is a wedding photographer, but instead of taking photos of brides and grooms Friday, she shot leaves and trees.
"The mountains with all the snow, and even the changing leaves, you don't see this anywhere except Utah," Frandsen said.
It's a beauty that beckons people to Utah's mountains every year.
"It's spectacular — all the pines, the quakies and the oaks," Porter said. "The Alpine Loop is some of the most pristine, spectacular world class beauty and scenery of all time."
While some might be content to admire the vistas from their car, there are also places on the road to get out and walk to view the leaves.
Jamie Hartley has a rare skin condition that prevents her from walking the trails.
"We help her out. We found a little stroller she fits into, and we just push her around," Taylor Hartley said.
"This is the perfect time of year. I am glad to be able to see it up close and not whizzing by in the car. We get to take it easy," Jamie said.
However, the view of the leaves won't be visible for much longer. The Alpine Loop closes to vehicle traffic at the end of October for the winter.