Sunday Travel Thread: Fabulous Fall Foliage [Y-not]
Greetings traveling morons and moronettes! It's mid-September... that can only mean one thing: Fall foliage season is here and it's fabulous!I went to college in Vermont so I can state unequivocally that it does, in fact, have the best fall foliage!
The Berkshires in Western Massachusetts have some great views:
How about those of you who don't get the changing leaves display at this time of year? What distinctive sights are at their best at this time of year where YOU live? For example, I've heard about the Fall Monarch Migration, but have never witnessed it:
Monarch butterflies are not able to survive the cold winters of most of the United States so they migrate south and west each autumn to escape the cold weather. The monarch migration usually starts in about October of each year, but can start earlier if the weather turns cold sooner than that. The monarch butterflies will spend their winter hibernation in Mexico and some parts of Southern California where it is warm all year long. If the monarch lives in the Eastern states, usually east of the Rocky Mountains, it will migrate to Mexico and hibernate in oyamel fir trees. If the monarch butterfly lives west of the Rocky Mountains, then it will hibernate in and around Pacific Grove, California in eucalyptus trees.Have any of you seen the monarch migration? Here's another natural event that occurs in the Fall, in Australia:
Every year in March or April, just after the full moon, Ningaloo Reef comes alive as more than 200 species of coral spawn, creating an amazing underwater show as the ocean glows pink. Soon after, gentle whale sharks arrive to feed in the rich waters. Whale shark swimming tours operate out of Exmouth and Coral Bay from mid March to mid July. The coral spawning spectacular also takes place for just a few nights on the Great Barrier Reef between October and December. Join a night snorkelling or scuba diving tour for a dazzling up-close encounter.
Where do you like to go to enjoy Fall? Any recommendations of scenic drives or picturesque landscapes?
Next week's Travel Thread will be about Fall Festivals, especially Oktoberfests.
Comments(Jump to bottom of page)
1 Love my yellow quaking aspen!
Posted by: S. Muldoon at September 14, 2014 11:00 AM (NeFrd)
2 That Japan pic is the Kiyomizudera temple in Kyoto.
The thing I found most amazing about it wasn't the temple itself, but the cemetery adjacent to it.
A valley of tombstones.
Just google images "Kiyomizudera cemetery."
Posted by: Dr. Varno at September 14, 2014 11:04 AM (fIv/H)
3 Nothing beats West Virginia for fall beauty.
Posted by: Constantine XI at September 14, 2014 11:05 AM (3749G)
4 Are you getting an early aspen turn there in UT, YNot? Last year we were into October here before they turned.
Posted by: S. Muldoon at September 14, 2014 11:05 AM (NeFrd)
5 Such a beautiful post.
Posted by: artisanal 'ette at September 14, 2014 11:05 AM (IXrOn)
6 The Great Smokey Mountains. You can follow the turning down from Maine all the way to North GA.
Posted by: Vic at September 14, 2014 11:07 AM (T2V/1)
7 I think the Great Smokey Mountains gave me an eyegasm.
Posted by: boulder t'hobo at September 14, 2014 11:07 AM (3kZUM)
8 As much as I hate Aspen, growing up near there it was always beautiful to go driving in the mountains in the fall.
Posted by: Colorado Alex at September 14, 2014 11:07 AM (10ydV)
9 Yeah, S. Muldoon, I love ours too. The sound they make is so relaxing and the way the light is filtered through their leaves in the late afternoon is so beautiful.
We have some very tall, mature ones in our back yard. I gather they are unusually healthy for the altitude we're at (only about 4500). Had an arborist look them over a couple of years ago. Will do the same again next year.
Posted by: Y-not at September 14, 2014 11:07 AM (zDsvJ)
One thing I never learned to do, diving. Many in my family were trained divers, and were able to enjoy the undersea world. I am jealous.
Posted by: artisanal 'ette at September 14, 2014 11:07 AM (IXrOn)
11 Are you getting an early aspen turn there in UT, YNot? Last year we were into October here before they turned.
Our backyard ones are starting to turn, which does feel early to me.
I think next week we'll go to Snowbird to check out the Oktoberfest so we'll probably see some nice foliage there.
I want to see how far along the Nebo Loop is, as well. That's a great drive.
Posted by: Y-not at September 14, 2014 11:10 AM (zDsvJ)
12 Fall started here 30 August if we're counting when the leaves started changing, and if we're counting the first ice-pellet / snow-storm then it started 11-12 September.
I'm still finding it hard to read what I just posted.
Posted by: boulder t'hobo at September 14, 2014 11:10 AM (3kZUM)
13 Leaves started turning here early again this year. It's going to be another cold Winter. But we did finally have one day where it got above 100F this Summer.
Posted by: Vic at September 14, 2014 11:14 AM (T2V/1)
14 You can FEEL the yellow in a high aspen grove.it warms your skin like the sun. It's like walking through a molten gold cathedral.
If God doesn't live in Colorado, I bet that's where he spends most of his time.
Posted by: Bob's House of Flannel Shirts and Wallet Chains at September 14, 2014 11:19 AM (yxw0r)
15 I witnessed the Monarch arrival in Pacific Grove. Where I grew up, the massing of hummingbirds for migration is one of the Rites of Fall. Another is the beginning of duck hunting season.
Posted by: no good deed at September 14, 2014 11:24 AM (w3a0Z)
16 Hwy 61 north from Duluth all the way to the Canadian Border and inland into the lakes and Boundary Waters Region. Breath taking beauty. Very quick season (maybe a week or so) but when you catch it right it is awe inspiring.
Posted by: Truck Monkey, as Voiced by Brian Dennehy at September 14, 2014 11:25 AM (jucos)
17 We've got a couple acre aspen grove on our mountain property. It has been in decline for some years. We thinned out a portion of the dying adults and seem to be getting a resurgence of new growth. I'll miss them if they go. We use them to mark the passing of the seasons of our lives.
Posted by: S. Muldoon at September 14, 2014 11:25 AM (NeFrd)
18 I grew up in New England and saw Fall foliage in each State there.
The odd thing is a single tree on a street where I lived in Western MA was the most beautiful example of them all.
It was perfect.
Posted by: eman at September 14, 2014 11:30 AM (MQEz6)
19 >>One thing I never learned to do, diving. Many in my family were trained divers, and were able to enjoy the undersea world. I am jealous.
Its easy and never too late to learn. I taught people as old as 78 so don't think you can't do it.
Posted by: JackStraw at September 14, 2014 11:32 AM (g1DWB)
20 Great thread Y-not. Seems i'll miss changing of foliage color in NC this year. On bright side, the sunsets are amazing here (NW coast of Peloponesse) so there's that. The other awesome thing abojt fall is the change in the smell of the air. Anyone else dig the smell of fall in the air?
Posted by: fastfreefall at September 14, 2014 11:32 AM (bsRbS)
21 Aspen leaves photo link in my nick.
Posted by: S. Muldoon at September 14, 2014 11:35 AM (NeFrd)
22 Good stuff Y-Not.
Fall to me?
Fucking leaves in my pool. Started this week. Over week before Christmas.
Posted by: Nip Sip at September 14, 2014 11:35 AM (0FSuD)
23 "Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns." - George Eliot
I adore the Fall, and heartily agree with Ms Eliot. You can actually spend almost three months chasing Autumn is this great nation.
Some of my faves, aside from New England:
Although it doesn't get much press, Arkansas ( and the Ozarks in general) can bring the Fall foliage, too.
Northern Georgia is gorgeous, as is the rest of Appalachia.
West Virginia is definitely as stunning in Autumn as it is any time of the year.
Posted by: Tammy al-Thor at September 14, 2014 11:38 AM (IBB9V)
24 In my old house in CLT we had a Ginko tree. Man when it changes. Wow!
Posted by: Nip Sip at September 14, 2014 11:39 AM (0FSuD)
25 The other awesome thing abojt fall is the change in the smell of the air. Anyone else dig the smell of fall in the air?
Posted by: fastfreefall at September 14, 2014 11:32 AM (bsRbS)
Oh hells yeah.
And the golden quality to the light.
Posted by: Tammy al-Thor at September 14, 2014 11:39 AM (IBB9V)
26 I went to the monarch wintering grounds in Mexico, in 1987, with my then boyfriend, who is still my husband. It was one of his crazy hippie trips he used to court me, so it was mostly unplanned and serendipitous. After taking a horrid train ride from Nuevo Laredo to San Miguel de Allende, we started exploring by bus, and wound up at a decrepit but very neat old hot springs resort. You could mess around like that safely in Mexico back then--what a 180 degree change there's been since.
We seemed to be just about the only guests, but after dinner, we saw someone giving a slide show on the monarchs to a group in a side room. We poked our heads in, then snuck in and sat down.
It was a nice group of folks on a tour from an Alabama botanical garden, and their tour leader was one of the guys who had discovered the monarchs' secret wintering grounds.
Well, we weren't as stupid as we looked, so we attached ourselves to them like a tick on a hound dog, and took the tour into the mountains, standing up in the back of small stake bed trucks on very scary roads. It cost $30 dollars per truckload, so the more people crammed into a truck, the cheaper per person. We ponied up our share. It was wildly worth it, as you know if you've been there or seen the pictures. The big trees are completely covered with the butterflies, and it's like an alien world with them coating everything, turning the fir trees burnt orange, and fluttering around everywhere.
Posted by: stace at September 14, 2014 11:39 AM (9PXzx)
27 Posted by: Bob's House of Flannel Shirts and Wallet Chains at September 14, 2014 11:19 AM (yxw0r)
You, sir, need to come out and play with us more! Colorado really is amazing.
And aspens are just about my favorite tree. The leaves are mesmerizing, the bark is gorgeous, so it has year round beauty.
Trying to decide if I could grow some here in Arkansas.
Posted by: Tammy al-Thor at September 14, 2014 11:42 AM (IBB9V)
28 Virginia's Blue Ridge mountains are quite breathtaking during the fall.
Posted by: shredded chi at September 14, 2014 11:43 AM (61L4J)
29 We had a gingko when we lived in Indiana. It did change to a nice color and the leaves are a fun shape, but I was never satisfied by how our particular specimen filled out. I like a nice full canopy (except on aspens).
There are some trees around here that do the coolest thing -- each branch turns a different color. They'll range from yellows to deep maroons. The canopy is not full on these trees, so you can recognize each branch individually. I'll try to get a picture to post sometime, maybe in the gardening thread. Does this tree sound familiar to anyone?
Posted by: Y-not at September 14, 2014 11:46 AM (zDsvJ)
30 We have very little fall color in this part of Texas, unless you go see the Lost Maples, but fall is my favorite season, just because it's a relief from the heat and humidity. I imagine it's like what springtime is like for people where the winters are hard--you can finally go out and be comfortable outdoors. We just got our first real cool front, so yesterday my husband and I did a little stay-cation holiday, eating lunch outside, and drinking too much in Southtown, and walking along the lower Riverwalk--without sweating to death!
Still need some damn rain though. It rained most everywhere except at my house. Grrr. Who do I talk to about that?
Posted by: stace at September 14, 2014 11:47 AM (9PXzx)
31 stace, I want to go see that someday.
We used to go to Pacific Grove a lot, so I've seen that and have always wanted to see the other end of the journey!
Hey, no good deed!
Posted by: Tammy al-Thor at September 14, 2014 11:48 AM (IBB9V)
32 We've got a couple acre aspen grove on our mountain property. It has
been in decline for some years. We thinned out a portion of the dying
adults and seem to be getting a resurgence of new growth.
When we moved to this house we had 7 aspens (I nicknamed them the Seven Sisters). Had an arborist inspect/treat/prune them that first year. He found a boring insect in one. Felt the safest thing was to take it down so the others didn't get sick. Seems to have worked.
I think with aspens your strategy of thinning the weak ones is a good one.
Posted by: Y-not at September 14, 2014 11:48 AM (zDsvJ)
33 Western Michigan along the Lake Michigan shoreline.
Posted by: Aviator at September 14, 2014 11:48 AM (3rrMW)
34 A couple of late Septembers ago, I did a road trip to the western side of South Dakota. In addition to the Badlands and the Black Hills, my absolute favorite part of the trip was a 20-mile drive down Hwy 14A from Spearfish (off Interstate 90) to Cheyenne Crossing. Better known as Spearfish Canyon, the foliage was amazing. There is a park about midway through where you can stop and enjoy the scenery.
Posted by: Moonbeam at September 14, 2014 11:51 AM (MxFiO)
35 Tammy, I love the fall smell in the air as you pass a home burning leaves. I know a lot of municipalities have outlawed burning but we are lucky enough to be rural enough to burn.
My favorite drive in fall is the southeastern Wisconsin drive in Kettle Moraine to Holy Hill. Winding roads and overhanging sugar maples and oaks.
Then you can see the monastary, now a basilica, high up in the hills as you drive up to reach it.
Posted by: bossy barbara at September 14, 2014 11:51 AM (lchei)
36 Football thread is up, btw.
Posted by: Y-not at September 14, 2014 11:52 AM (zDsvJ)
37 Yes, the aspen trees are lovely in the fall! NE foliage is the best.
Here's what I love to do in the fall: go apple picking! Usually it also involves a picnic in the orchard under the clear blue sky, or later into fall, picking out a pumpkin and hot cider. I have so far been unable to get anyone to do a corn maze, though.
Posted by: Lizzy at September 14, 2014 11:57 AM (D/504)
38 Many years ago when I was dating a guy whose grandparents lived on the Cape, I loved going down there in the fall. Walking on the beach when it's a little cold (but empty!) is just wonderful.
Posted by: Lizzy at September 14, 2014 11:59 AM (D/504)
39 Here's what I love to do in the fall: go apple picking! Usually it also
involves a picnic in the orchard under the clear blue sky, or later into
fall, picking out a pumpkin and hot cider. I have so far been unable to
get anyone to do a corn maze, though.
Oh, we did that one year when we lived in the Midwest. It was fun.
I've done a corn maze (there a fair number of them around here), but it was still pretty warm (hot, really) so it wasn't that fun.
Posted by: Y-not at September 14, 2014 12:00 PM (zDsvJ)
40 Ah, well Y-not, guess it's a good thing I've never done a corn maze. Another downside would be if there are hay bales involved - found out I was allergic to hay in a childhood hayride from hell.
Posted by: Lizzy at September 14, 2014 12:03 PM (D/504)
41 Minnesota north of Duluth up on the border is fabulous for fall leaves, and empty of tourons most of the time. You can get Park Service cabins for next to nothing, too.
Posted by: OG Celtic-American, Whore Shawl Tycoon at September 14, 2014 12:04 PM (j1tga)
42 Another downside would be if there are hay bales involved - found out I was allergic to hay in a childhood hayride from hell.
Oh, you would be in torture!
Posted by: Y-not at September 14, 2014 12:04 PM (zDsvJ)
43 Upper Peninsula of Michigan is a good place to check out. A drive up from the Porcupine Mountains around Ontanagon up to Copper Harbor, especially Brockway Mountain Drive.
Posted by: Dave S. at September 14, 2014 12:11 PM (UvR6d)
44 >>Oh, you would be in torture!
*scratches 'corn maze' off annual Fall To Do list.
Posted by: Lizzy at September 14, 2014 12:12 PM (D/504)
45 Posted by: Tammy al-Thor at September 14, 2014 11:42 AM (IBB9V
Thanks. But I don't think aspens would do well in AR. I'm at about 6000 feet - right at the line. They can be grown below me, but they only really thrive above me.
Birch is a good lowland substitute. Cottonwoods have the same leaf shape. And you can carve kachinas from their roots.
Posted by: Bob's House of Flannel Shirts and Wallet Chains at September 14, 2014 12:13 PM (yxw0r)
46 Come to Vermont for the foliage. Stay for the soon to be "free" healthcare, and the high taxes and energy cost that will accompany it. Gotta save the planet too ya know.
Posted by: deepred at September 14, 2014 12:14 PM (xv5cf)
47 The best time for foliage here on my street is the Spring. All of the trees up and down the street are different varieties of blooming/flowering trees.
Posted by: Vic at September 14, 2014 12:15 PM (T2V/1)
48 I think the tree I'm thinking of is called a Black Tupelo:
Posted by: Y-not at September 14, 2014 12:30 PM (zDsvJ)
49 For Mid-westerners, Meeting of the Great Rivers scenic byway is fantastic.
Posted by: Buford Gooch at September 14, 2014 01:29 PM (ZwQjw)
50 Up here in the Great White North, we have larches that do a great colour change at this time every year.
Posted by: 2SoonOld2LateSmart at September 14, 2014 01:38 PM (Sot2r)
51 This comment was on the book thread, so I'm taking the liberty of transplanting it here, especially since I wasn't aware of the monarch migration on the TX coast:
136 YES...I have seen the Monarch migration, at least part of it. It is unbelievable. We have a beach house along the Texas coast (Matagorda), a friend and I had gone fishing and when we returned there were Monarchs everywhere, when we got up on the deck, they looked like a river flowing by, hundreds of yards wide, stretching from our deck at least a 150-200 yards out over the Gulf, and as far up and down the beach as we could see.
Posted by: jpintx at September 14, 2014 11:13 AM (eY2fu)
Posted by: stace at September 14, 2014 02:05 PM (9PXzx)
52 I grew up in New England and was spoiled. All those sugar maples from Rhode Island to Maine were reliable and gorgeous. But the single best autumn display I ever saw was during our honeymoon along the Blue Ridge Parkway in Virginia. That was over 30 years ago and it has never equaled that trip. But even when the color isn't spectacular, we like to go up to Skyline Drive, look over the valley, munch some just picked crisp apples and breathe in that autumn aroma.
Mrs. JTB is from Wisconsin and confirms how pretty it is around Holy Hill.
Posted by: JTB at September 14, 2014 02:09 PM (FvdPb)
53 Tammy, I love the fall smell in the air as you pass a home burning leaves. I know a lot of municipalities have outlawed burning but we are lucky enough to be rural enough to burn
Heaven! Ditto fireplaces, woodstoves.
Nothing like woodsmoke. I have a candle that smells exactly like woodsmoke and I look forward to the first time I burn it every year!
It is so pretty outside, it's hard for me to sit at the computer. I"m missing the book thread, too, but it's just perfect Fall day here.
Posted by: Tammy al-Thor at September 14, 2014 02:10 PM (IBB9V)
54 Does this tree sound familiar to anyone?
Posted by: Y-not at September 14, 2014 11:46 AM (zDsvJ)
Liquid ambar ( we call them sweet gum in the South)
They planted them in SoCal quite extensively, so we managed to get a touch of Fall. (In Orange County, anyway)
Posted by: Tammy al-Thor at September 14, 2014 02:14 PM (IBB9V)
55 Y Not, I had no idea tupelos grew in Utah! I think of them as Southern, I guess.
Posted by: Bob's House of Flannel Shirts and Wallet Chains at September 14, 2014 12:13 PM (yxw0r)
I was afraid of that. No substitute for aspens, though!
Do you carve kachinas?
Posted by: Tammy al-Thor at September 14, 2014 02:20 PM (IBB9V)
56 And even though I am alone on a dead thread, I would like to wax poetic about the smell of sycamoreleaves in the Fall.
They ain't purty, but my God that smell is sooooooo good!
Posted by: Tammy al-Thor at September 14, 2014 02:23 PM (IBB9V)
57 Tammy, What is the brand name of that wood smoke candle? That is one of my favorite scents. I would love to light one while reading and sipping coffee in the back yard on a cool day.
Posted by: JTB at September 14, 2014 02:23 PM (FvdPb)
58 You know you done got old and grumpy when your first thought on seeing the fall foliage pics is...
"Someone's gonna have to rake up all that shit".
Posted by: Grimmy at September 14, 2014 03:29 PM (uUsh9)
59 It's called Winter, by Slatkin.
Usually get it from Bath & Body works. It's seasonal, but they should be bringing it out pretty soon.
Let it burn a bit before you judge it; gets better as it goes along!
Posted by: Tammy al-Thor at September 14, 2014 03:30 PM (IBB9V)
60 And it also scents the house beautifully when it's not burning. (I mean, not the entire house, but the area where it's sitting!)
Posted by: Tammy al-Thor at September 14, 2014 03:31 PM (IBB9V)
61 The most extraordinary fall foliage I've visited was at Meadows of Dan, Virginia. So beautiful, I could only stare in awe. One of those memories of sight, smell and senses that remain in the heart forever.
Posted by: I'd rather be surfin at September 14, 2014 07:13 PM (+AHZG)
62 Where do you like to go to enjoy Fall?
The Mono Lake/June Lake area, if I'm able to make it out that way. Tioga Canyon and June Lake have some picturesque aspen groves.
Posted by: Blacque Jacques Shellacque at September 14, 2014 10:27 PM (DO37j)
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