Posted by: Sandy Steinman | September 24, 2018

California Fall Color Updates 9/24/18

California Fall Color has several new posts this morning They include:

  • Hope Valley (7,300′) – Patchy (10-50%)
  • Sonoma Wine Country – fall color has not yet arrived in any significance, Darrell reported. From Arnold Drive and back along CA-12, there are only spots of color and narrow bands of gold on the lower edge of the vines.
    there is ample fall color to be enjoyed in the heavy clusters of purple grapes awaiting harvest. Similarly in the Sierra Foothills, Pleasant Valley vines are still green, though many have now been picked.Mid-October is when grape leaves are expected to blush in scarlet, amber, and international orange tones. 
    Sonoma Valley – Just Starting (0-10%)
  • Tahoe Donner – Peak mountain mule ear at Peak, though the overall impression of the Tahoe Donner area was of Patchy quaking aspen displaying a mix of lime, yellow and orange. 
    Tahoe Donner (6,700′) – Patchy (10-50%


Go to California Fall Color to see full reports and photos.


  1. You are right that it is difficult to time fall color. In addition to some seasonal variation, wind, rain and cold can change things quickly.

    The eastern Sierra is definitely California’s best fall color. You might be past peak by mid-October but there should still be color. You might also consider Plumas County.

    I would suggest checking past years for mid-Oct. reports on Natural History Wanderings and California Fall Color. Also check reports right before you leave and even while on your trip for this year’s most up-to-date info.

    Hope this helps and you great fall color.



  2. Hello Sandy,

    I have enjoyed your posts for awhile and appreciate the information, which has led us to many wonderful trips.

    I realize it’s probably difficult to predict dates for peak leaf viewing but from your experience where might be some good bets in California for Oct 13-15, our anniversary weekend.

    Madelyn Stone

    Sent from my iPhone


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