Dryocoetes confusus Swaine, the western balsam bark beetle, is an important bark beetle associated with Abies lasiocarpa (Hook.) Nutt. (subalpine fir) in western North America. Little information is available on the life cycle and ecology of this insect in Colorado. In this study in north central Colorado, we examined its flight periodicity, attack patterns, and life cycle in downed trees. Flight season, as indicated by pheromone-trap catches, began in early June. Peak flight was observed during early to mid-July. A second peak in flight was observed in some years, but its occurrence was not consistent. Preferred attack sites on downed trees were the underside or side of the log and through branch stubs. The life cycle for this beetle was completed in 2 years, consistent with earlier observations from British Columbia. Sex ratio was 1:1, but a higher percentage of males fly earlier in the season.