Eastern Region 9 – National Forests has a new fall color report for 10/30/14 for the following states:
Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wisconsin
Color is winding down around the Region, though you can still catch some beautiful colors in the southern tier on the Mark Twain, Hoosier and Shawnee National Forests. Though this will be the last fall color update for the 2014 season, please stay tuned to the R9 website for winter recreation information. There are several fun activities to do in the Eastern Region after the leaves have fallen and the snow begins to blanket the trees.
There is still a lot of mixed color across the landscape of the Shawnee National Forest, with some trees showing their autumn foliage and others still green. The maples, sycamore and elm have turned into a blend of orange, yellow and red. Always the last to change will be the wide variety of oak tree species, transforming into deep reds and burnt orange. Currently leaf change is at about 70 percent, with peak colors predicted around November 1.
The northern district of the Hoosier National Forest has lost most of its fall color. The southern district is at about 75 percent and quickly waning.
The Ottawa National Forest’s fall color season has all but come and gone. One may come upon some occasional color, but recent strong winds caused most of the leaves to fall. However, just because the leaves are gone, doesn’t mean the Ottawa shuts down. We are currently in ruffed grouse season and archery deer season, with rifle deer season to begin shortly. If you’d like a late fall/early winter adventure, plan your trip to the Ottawa and continue to explore the great outdoors!
Fall colors are at their peak throughout southern Missouri, where the Mark Twain National Forest’s 1.5 million acres are located. Color is intensifying in the southern areas of the Forest as poplars, hickories, redbuds and sycamore turn bright yellows, and sumac, dogwoods and poison ivy turn from red to burgundy. A little to the west, the hickories are fading and oaks are really starting to turn, along with the multicolored sweetgum. Black gum is a vivid crimson and pockets of sumac are still flashing rich burgundy color. Dogwoods are still showing beautiful red and burgundy colors and their bright red berries can still be seen. While the Ava and Willow areas are at their peak, Cassville is a week or two behind. Further south, colors in the Eleven Point area are at or just past peak. The hickory and gum have already peaked, and black and white oaks are approaching peak colors. If you’re coming for a last glimpse of color, some of the best routes for a scenic drive can be found on the map at: http://1.usa.gov/1sPmKnr.
Recent winds and rains have caused leaves to drop rapidly, and all six district offices on the Monongahela National Forest are declaring the 2014 fall color season to be at an end. Here’s to a wonderful rest of the year and a good 2015!