Fall-foliage excursions in New England

May 5, 2004
Outside Magazine
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Fall-foliage excursions in New England

Fall-foliage excursions in New England
Question: Generally, what is usually the period of the most spectacular fall colors in New England? Specifically, do researchers have any idea when that period will occur this year? Thanks for your help. My wife has just been diagnosed with terminal cancer and this may be her last major outing.

Phil Euler
San Jose, CA
[email protected]

Summer's the time to start planning trips to colorful fall destinations
Adventure Adviser: According to the experts at Tauck Tours, a company that offers 16 fall-foliage excursions, timing for autumn color varies slightly from year to year.

Generally, however, the process takes approximately six weeks during September and October, with most of New England's color peaking around early to mid-October. Early fall colors tend to be more brilliant at higher altitudes and farther north, like northern New England, Quebec’s Laurentian Mountains, Michigan, and the Rockies. Later, fall color tends to be more intense in the Canadian Maritimes, the Berkshires, and southern New England, as well as farther south in regions from Virginia to the Ozarks.

From September through October the change sweeps down mountainsides and drapes a good chunk of the country in explosive oranges, yellows, and reds. Coastal areas tend to turn color later than those inland, but because of the Gulf Stream, areas like Nova Scotia and Atlantic Canada turn later than expected.

For weekly updated fall foliage reports on specific regions throughout North America, call Tauk Tours' Fall Foliage Hot Line at 800-214-8209. You'll hear a recorded message locating the hottest fall foliage spots nationwide, based on eyewitness accounts by tour directors in the field. For more information on Tauck Tours' specialized color trips in New England, Eastern Canada, and the Rocky Mountains, call 800-468-2825.

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