Posted by: Sandy Steinman | September 29, 2017

Great Smoky Fall Color 9/29/17

Great Smoky Mountains National Park  reports

Fall Color Report- Fall color continues to emerge throughout the Smokies. The highest elevations in the park, around 6,000 ft., are exhibiting great color right now. The yellows of the mountain ash, beech, and birch trees along with the oranges and reds of witch hobble dominate the drive along Clingmans Dome Road. Looking into the valleys and along the mountainsides, however, the view is still predominantly green, with hints of color dispersed throughout the forests. Perhaps more notable now are the fall wildflowers including cardinal flower, black-eyed Susan, coreopsis, great blue lobelia, skunk goldenrod, southern harebell, ironweed, and a variety of asters.

Visitors who want to get an early start can enjoy autumn at this time with fewer people on the roads, in picnic areas, and campgrounds. Cooler temperatures, sunny days, and clear blue skies provide breathtaking mountain scenery and perfect conditions for recreating in the natural surroundings. With the weather forecast for this week of sunny days in the 70s/80s and cooler nights in the 50s, color will be progressing this week and develop more rapidly from early to mid-October through the mountains.

Suggested scenic drives include Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail, Rich Mountain Road, Newfound Gap Road and Clingmans Dome Road. Now is a prime time to visit Cataloochee to see elk which are at the height of the mating season, bringing much showmanship to the valley. #fallcolorfriday Photo credit Kristina Plaas

See photos at Great Smoky Mountains National Park


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