Posted by: Sandy Steinman | September 30, 2013

Great Smoky Mountains Fall Color 9/30/13

Fall Leaf Color Updates | Great Smoky Mountains Association posted the following report for 9/30/13:

A run of sunny days and cool nights has coaxed out scattered patches of fall colors up and down the Great Smoky Mountains. At the lower elevations, early changers like black gum, dogwood, Virginia creeper, sumac, tuliptree, sycamore, and sourwood are displaying nice color. At the mid elevations, yellow buckeyes are shifting to gold while yellow birch, American beech, and some maples are showing autumn hues.

At the highest elevations, fall has arrived. American mountain-ash trees are loaded with bright berries. Mountain maple, yellow birch, and berry bushes are also turning. However, the peak of color on the mountaintops is still days away.
At the lower and mid elevations, fall color is likely to peak in late October or early November.

This has been an extremely wet year in the Smokies and the deciduous trees appear to be holding onto their leaves quite well. During drought years, some trees lose their leaves by the end of September. Recent rain showers have improved the chances of an extended color season this year.

Recommended hikes include Forney Ridge Trail to Andrews Bald, Road Prong, Thomas Divide, Mt. Cammerer Tower, Rich Mountain Loop, and Chestnut Top. Good drives are the Blue Ridge Parkway, Little River Road, and Clingmans Dome Road.

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