Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 13, 2017

California Fall Color Reports 10/13/17

California Fall Color has a number of new reports . There are detailed reports for Hope Valley and South Tahoe as well as information about Apple Hill, Newton Road in Pleasant Valley and  LaPorte Rd. in  Quincy Here are the highlights with photo links.

Apple Hill – My route took me through Pleasant Valley (great wine tasting) down Newtown Rd. toward Placerville, US 50 and Camino.
Newtown is a lovely, winding road canopied by huge black oak and bigleaf maple, that now are speckled with huge bright yellow and lime-colored maple leaves.
Apple Hill, Camino (3,133′) – Near Peak (50-75%) GO NOW!
Newtown Road, Pleasant Valley – Patchy to Near Peak (10-75%) GO NOW!
See photos at Apple Hill – Ripe for Picking

Hope Valley – still has lots and lots of peak color, though it’s all below 7,400′.
A scouting trip through the Hope Valley (CA-88, Carson Pass) found peak color at Sorensen’s Resort at the top of Woodford’s Canyon and in the Hope Valley below Red Creek Cabin.
Aspen high on the ridge behind the cabin have moved from Just Starting to Patchy.
Those directly behind the cabin, that were peaking previously, are now Past Peak and those that were Patchy to Near Peak are peaking.
Above the cabin, Red Lake and Caples Lake have peaked. Only spotty color remains. Similarly, at Sorensen’s, stands at the resort are at full, glorious peak, while those across the road and along the West Fork of the Carson River are Past Peak.

Read More…

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 13, 2017

San Juan National Forest 10/12/17

San Juan National Forest reports

Estimated Percentage of Current Fall Foliage:
Durango to Purgatory – 85%-0%
Molas Pass – 90%-0%
Silverton/Red Mtn Pass – 85%-0%
Pagosa – 85%-0%
Dolores to Lizard Head Pass – 85%-0%
Mancos/La Platas – 90%-0%
Ouray to Telluride – 85%-0%

Areas with Greatest Amount of Color / Recommended Viewing Areas: Most areas are past peak color and have lost most leaves at this time. Creek and river canyons below 8000 feet.

Estimated Peak Viewing Period: Past peak for most aspen.  Some good riverside colors still visible in places

Viewing Suggestions / Tips: Individual stands can still be going but otherwise follow the rivers for cottonwoods and willows.

Trees That Are Currently Turning Color: Cottonwoods and willows are best right now. Some choke cherry, service berry, and Box Elder trees.

For More Information on Fall Colors Please Contact: San Juan Public Lands Center, Durango (970) 247-4874

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 13, 2017

Eastern Sierra Fall Color Report 10/12/17

Reposted from Eastern Sierra Facebook page

Eastern Sierra Report for yesterday, October 12, 2017

Owens Valley, Bishop (around town) and Round Valley: Green and yellow. One or two cottonwoods at peak, mostly early.

McGee Creek: Past peak but photogenic. Some areas of nice light orange color along the lower portion of the creek just below McGee Campground, but otherwise, color tones in the valley and around the pack station up to the trailhead are deep yellow, gold, brown and bare. Some green patches but they look like they will go straight to brown soon rather than color up. Creek area is very nice, but color there is gold, brown and fading.

Convict Lake: Mostly past peak. A few gorgeous orange topped trees around the resort but with a view of buildings, not the lake. Several nice gold cottonwoods right at the marina. Campground is brown and deep gold. The area along southern edge of the lake is deep gold, brown, black and bare. Back of the lake was in shade and I couldn’t see well enough to evaluate. VERY CROWDED. Almost no parking.

Mammoth Lakes/Twin Lakes: Not much color in town or around Twin Lakes. A few nice yellow aspens on the Twin Lakes loop near Tamarack Lodge, but vegetation around the lake edge is deep gold, brown, black and bare.

Overall, the smoke is awful throughout the Eastside.The stretch of mountains from Wheeler Crest to Mt. Tom, Basin, Humphreys, etc., was barely visible. Thick haze everywhere.

If you’re coming up for the weekend, be prepared for big crowds. Enjoy!

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 13, 2017

Cats Kill More Than 1 Million Australian Birds Daily

ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) reports

For the first time, researchers estimate the toll taken by feral and pet cats on Australia’s bird life — and the numbers are high enough to push several species towards extinction.

Read full story at: Cats kill more than 1 million birds in Australia every day, new estimates show – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 12, 2017

California Air Quality Today

Much of California has poor air quality today due to the fires. If you are planning on going outdoors today and are concerned about the air quality go to AIRNow for up-to-date reports and forecasts.

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 12, 2017

California Fall Color Updates 10/12/17

California Fall Color has new reports today

Walker River –  often overlooked as a fall color location. along a dirt road, 15 miles north of Bridgeport, to Obsidian Campground in the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest yesterday to find aspen and willows in all stages of peak, coloring the dense forest near the stream with avocado green, gold, orange and rose.  West Walker River (7,800′) – Near Peak 50-75%) GO NOW! See photos at  West Walker Discovery

Henness Pass Road –  travels east/west across the Northern Sierra, south of CA-49, roughly between Camptonville and Downieville, but slightly to the south.
As the lowest pass through the Sierra Nevada, you’d think everyone would drive it, but don’t expect to jump in your sedan for a leisurely Sunday drive, as only high clearance off-road vehicles can operate on it. This is wild country dotted with ranches, wildlife, spots of fall color and not much else. Henness Pass (6,920′) – Near Peak (50-75%) GO NOW! See photos at  Henness Pass – Ever Heard of It?

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 12, 2017

Eastern National Forests Fall Color 10/12/17

Eastern Region National Forests reports


Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie Fall color on the Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie begins in September and usually ends by the middle of October. You’ll notice trees along roadways turning before trees further in the woods being to change. You’ll also notice the prairie flowers still in bloom! Mark your calendars for a Fall Color Hike on October 14, from 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. (CDT).
Shawnee National Forest Fall color change is at about 30% in southern Illinois’s Shawnee National Forest, with much of the forest canopy still to display its vibrant colors. This week hickory and maple trees are now showing their bright red, yellow and orange hues joining the earlier trees that are the first to change such as dogwood, sycamore and tulip poplar. Cooler temps have moved into the region, along with shorter days; both aiding the continuing color transformation. Autumn is one of the best seasons to enjoy the Shawnee National Forest in southern Illinois. To assist in your trip planning visit Southernmost Illinois Tourism Bureau or Illinois Ozarks Tourism.


Hoosier National Forest Definite changes are coming on the Hoosier National Forest!  Sweet gums are showing their deep reds and orange hues as the understory starts to take on some color.  Virginia creeper and dogwoods are turning red along with a scattering of maples showing off their colors.  We are still in the very early stages so much more color is on the way.  It will be a week or so before we are in full color but don’t miss the opportunity to come visit.  Our temperatures are becoming more fall like making a camping trip even more fun.  There are lots of festivals going on around our communities so don’t miss those as well.

Read More…

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 12, 2017

Lawsuit To Ground Excessive National Park Overflights

Public Employees for Environmental Protection News Release

Lawsuit To Ground Excessive National Park Overflights

The Federal Aviation Administration has fallen down on its job of protecting national parks, visitors, and nearby residents from incessant, noisy air tours, according to a lawsuit filed today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). As a result, nearly 65,000 air tours, most concentrated over a few parks, took off last year without limit on the number, routes, or timing of flights.

Read More…

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 11, 2017

Eastern Sierra Fall Color: Mammoth 10/10/17

California Fall Color reports on the Mammoth area:

The Mammoth Lakes Basin has few aspen. Nevertheless, it should be on any color spotter’s must-see list because of its willows.
Near Lake Mary, Lake George and along the west shore of the basin, they are putting on a show of orange splendor, right now. The lakes basin is impressive any time of year. A dramatic bowl of sawtooth peaks cups a necklace of lakes that are favorites of anglers, hikers, cyclists and people being inspired by this planet’s glory. Mammoth Lakes Basin (8,500′) – Peak (75-100%) – GO NOW!

Laurel Creek (8,000′) – Peak (75-100%) – A golden vein of aspen winds along Laurel Creek down from the High Sierra to near US 395, south of Mammoth Lakes. It is absolutely breathtaking.
As you drive north on US 395, the aspen look like a gigantic golden chain that has been laid upon the land. Brilliant yellow and orange foliage flows down the mountain like a twisted flume ride.
To see it up close a high-clearance SUV is required. As, you’re on a dirt road that is littered with stones and boulders in places. However, with a capable off-road vehicle, it’s soft adventure with a beautiful view and just minutes south of Mammoth Lakes. GO NOW!

Snowcreek Meadow – Peak (75-100%) – This is the go-to spot for fall color in Mammoth Lakes. Its meadow, ponds, and golf course are full of color and vistas. Hike of the Week is the Mammoth Lakes Town Loop… very easy and inspiring. GO NOW!

Mammoth Rock (9,100′) – Past Peak – You Missed It.

See photos at: Mammoth Is Massive – GO NOW!

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 11, 2017

 New England Fall Color 10/11/17

New England Today ‘s map shows peak color in northern New Hampshire, parts of northern Vermont and  parts of eastern and northern Maine. The rest of New England is showing moderate pre-peak color. Check out the map and follow fall color changes at Live Fall Foliage Map – New England Today

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 11, 2017

New York Fall Foliage 10/11/17

Fall Foliage in New York reports for the Week of October 11-17, 2017

Brilliant fall color emerging throughout New York State

Peak conditions expected in the Adirondacks, Catskills, Central NY, Finger Lakes, Chautauqua-Allegheny regions

This is the fifth 2017 Fall Foliage Report for New York State. Reports are obtained from volunteer field observers and reflect expected color conditions for the coming weekend. Fall Foliage Reports are issued every Wednesday afternoon.

Week of October 11 – 17, 2017

Albany, N.Y. – Considerably brighter fall foliage is predicted for this weekend throughout New York State, according to volunteer observers for Empire State Development’s I LOVE NEW YORK program. Peak conditions will be found in Adirondacks, Catskills, Central New York, Finger Lakes and Chautauqua-Allegheny regions. I LOVE NEW YORK defines “peak” foliage as the period when the leaves are displaying their best overall appearance of the season.

Brighter colors have emerged throughout the Adirondacks over the past week. In the Whiteface region of Essex County, expect peak to past-peak foliage with nearly complete leaf transition and bright red, yellow, orange and green leaves. Colors have come on strong over the past week. Foliage is past peak in the higher elevations. This weekend, expect 90 percent foliage change with bright orange, red and yellow leaves, despite significant leaf droppage. Leaves will be at peak in the town of Minerva. Expect 90 percent color change and red, yellow and brown leaves of average brilliance. Lake Placid has seen a late emergence of brilliant color over the past few days. This weekend, look for just past peak conditions with some bright, beautiful shades of orange, yellow, gold and red.

Read More…

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 11, 2017

Maine Fall Color 10/11/17

Maine Foliage Home reports

Color Peaking Throughout Much of Maine

(AUGUSTA, Maine) – The Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry’s Fall Foliage Report shows 75 to 100 percent color in zones 4, 5, 6 and 7. Central and coastal Maine (zones 1, 2 and 3) are at 50 percent color change. Low to moderate leaf drop is also reported throughout the state.

Typically, northern Maine (zones 6 and 7) reaches peak conditions the last week of September into the first week of October. The rest of the state’s progression of color will start occurring from north to south in mid-October. Coastal Maine typically reaches peak conditions mid-to-late October.

“Now that the busy Columbus Day weekend has passed, you can take those long, leisurely drives throughout coastal and western mountains of Maine this upcoming weekend and find less hectic traffic with stunning views of the fall colors. The entire state of Maine is now ablaze with color, but with plenty of green in the oaks to create a beautiful contrast,” according to Gale Ross, fall foliage spokesperson.

Read More…

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 11, 2017

Eastern Sierra Fall Color: Lundy Canyon 10/8/17

California Fall Color has a report for Lundy Canyon

Lundy Canyon, about a mile or two up the canyon, where they entered an aspen grove that was cloaked in golden and red leaves.

Lundy Canyon Campground had the best color she saw and estimates Lundy Canyon to be at peak, so we’re gonna declare it Peak of the Week.

note that these photographs were taken before this week’s wind event. Today, winds gusting to 30 mph are predicted for the Eastern Sierra and days will remain breezy for the rest of the week.

So, we caution that areas that have turned color will likely lose lots of their color, but those in the process of turning will continue to hold color.

The June Lake Loop is nearing peak and could peak by the weekend, though is peaking in locations, such as at Gull Lake, seen below. Again, the wind caution applies.

Lundy Canyon (7,858′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW!
June Lake Loop (7,654′)- Near Peak (50-75%) GO NOW!

See photos at Lundy’s Looking Luscious

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 11, 2017

Coconino National Forest Fall Color 10/10/17

Coconino National Forest reports

Color is just beginning to dust the north side of the San Francisco Peaks. Typically around Flagstaff and the Mogollon Rim, the first strong color shows up in late September, and colors peak the first two weeks of October. West Fork and Oak Creek Canyon typically peak around the third week of October. Sedona and the Verde Valley don’t typically turn until the end of October and into November. This page will be filled out and updated regularly as we get information and the season progresses.

Best Bets
The following recreation opportunities are the best bets for fall color for the weekend of September 30, 2017.

Notes on Lockett Meadow and Inner Basin Trail

  • Inner Basin and Lockett Meadow: Lockett Meadow and Inner Basin Trail are past peak and most trees have dropped their leaves.

Flagstaff Ranger District

Updated: October 10, 2017. Note that observations and observation dates below may not match photo. Estimates of color along trails are frequently made from viewpoints, such as Lockett Meadow or FR 418. The most recent trail photos are provided as available, but may be older than viewpoint observations.

Grand Views
These trails and recreation sites offer stunning views of the San Francisco Peaks, Kendrick Peak, and other scenic vistas. The south and western sides of the San Francisco Peaks are showing strong color, starting to drop color in the higher elevations. Kendrick Mountain has peaked and is dropping leaves.

Read more and see photos at Coconino National Forest 


Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 11, 2017

Rio Grande National Forest Fall Color 10/10/17

Rio Grande National Forest reports on 10/10/17

Estimated Percentage of Current Fall Foliage:
Conejos Peak District – 100%         2017 photos       2016 photos
Alamosa Canyon – 100%
Conejos Canyon – 100%
Cumbres Pass – 100%
Divide District – 100%                    2017 photos       2016 photos
Creede to Spring Creek Pass – leaves are beginning to fall
Wolf Creek Pass – 100%
Saguache District – 100%               2017 photos       2016 photos
Cochetopa Pass – 100%
Poncha Pass – 100%
Sangre de Cristos – 100%

Areas with Greatest Amount of Color / Recommended Viewing Areas: Higher elevations – most of the leaves are off the trees. Lower elevations cottonwood trees still have some leaves

Estimated Peak Viewing Period: The third week of September is usually the best time for the higher elevations, above Creede and up river, and the fourth week for the rest of the forest.

Viewing Suggestions / Tips: Best views are Pool Table Road 600,  FS Road 523 to Love Lake,  FS Road 520 to Lost Trail, Hwy 149…scenic byway, Hwy 17 Cumbres and La Manga Passes, FSR 250 and Cochetopa Pass

Trees That Are Currently Turning Color: Cottonwood and bushes.


Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 11, 2017

Eastern Sierra Fall Color: Mono County 10/10/17

Fall Colors in Mono County – Mono County Tourism   reports below. See photos at: Fall Colors in Mono County – Mono County Tourism and Film Commission

Now is the time to come to Mono County if you want to see the Fall Colors! Many places around the Eastern Sierra are at full peak this week and should be spectacular for the next 5 days to 2 weeks.

Here are the best locations for peak color this week: Twin Lakes Bridgeport, Lundy Canyon, Convict Lake, Rock Creek Road, McGee Creek Canyon, Conway Summit, Summers Meadow Road, Lobdell Lake Road, Lee Vining Canyon, Monitor Pass and the June Lake Loop.

You’ll still find color just about anywhere in Mono County right now but some of the higher elevation destinations like Sonora Pass and Virginia Lakes will range from peak to past peak as the leaves above the 9,000′ level seemed to have trouble getting going this year.

Want to get Fall Color conditions sooner?  Follow us at and for daily pictures and up-to-date information.


Monitor Pass (8,314′)- 75-100% GO NOW – Aspens on the summit are perfect right now. Look for the large grove of trees on the east side of the summit to have the be display of color.
Lobdell Lake Road (8,600′) – 75-100%  GO NOW! – We were here for a few hours on Sunday night have have never seen this location look so good. Lots of peaking trees with deep reds and yellows. Go here soon as some sections of trees are already past peak and will not last much longer.  Note: Burcham Flat Road to Lobdell lake Road are dirt roads – AWD or 4WD vehicles are recommended.
Walker Canyon (5,200′)- 10-50% Patchy – Walker canyon has slowed down from last weeks report. Sections with great yellows and lime greens while others are just getting going. This will be a “go now” designation after next week’s report.
Towns of Walker & Coleville – 0-10% Just Starting – A few cottonwoods have started to turn but this is traditionally the last place to peak in Mono County. Look to go here in the 3rd or 4th week in October.
Sonora Pass (9,623′)- 10-100% Go Now – It’s a fall color inversion here, as colors are looking nice around Leavitt Meadows Pack station and the lower sections of Sonora Pass while the aspens near the summit never seemed to get going. You’ll find peak to past peak groves along the road and is still worth the trip this weekend.

Read More…

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 11, 2017

Grass Valley Native Plant Sale Saturday Oct. 14

The Redbud chapter of the C.N.P.S Native Plant Sale is only one week away! We’ll be at the North Star House parking lot, 12075 Auburn Rd. in Grass Valley. The sale features ~ 2,000 beautiful and hardy California Native Plants that beat the heat, save water, and provide habitat for pollinators, birds, and other wildlife.

Members get in early (9:30 to 10:30) for our Member Appreciation sale, and new members are welcome, you can join at the door!

The 2017 plant list is available on-line at

See you at the sale!!

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 10, 2017

California Fall Color Reports 10/10/17 – part 2

California Fall Color has a number of new reports this afternoon. Here are the highlights with photo links.

Mammoth Lakes  flecked with gold, Near Peak aspen throughout town and along Mammoth Creek Trail and the Sherwin Creek Trail which leads to the Sherwin Lakes.Mammoth Lakes (8,500′) – Near Peak (50-75%) GO NOW! See photos at Mammoth Lakes Now Flecked With Gold

Saghen Meadows-  The moment has arrived when enough Peak color has fallen at a given location to classify the location as Past Peak. When that happens, we report, “You Missed It.”
That’s occurred at Sagehen Meadows Road in Mono County (13 mi. east of US 395, south of Mono Lake on CA-120), where this past week the color was gloriously rich and textured. Today, most of it is on the ground.
Yet, for the die-hard color spotter, like Mark Harding, there is beauty to be seen in the last weathered leaves of autumn. And, if you still visit Sagehen, you’ll find lovely glimpses of it, as he did. Sagehen Meadows, Mono County – Past Peak (You Missed It.)  See photos at Sagehen Meadows – You Missed It

Skyforest – Santa’s Village – Aspen and maple have been planted throughout the park’s fantasy village, and though the trees are young, they promise a show of fall color that will improve each autumn. Santa’s Village, Skyforest (5,174′) – Near Peak (50-75%) GO NOW! See photos at Santa’s Village Unwraps Autumn Presents

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 10, 2017

Blue Ridge Parkway Fall Color 10/10/2017

Asheville NC Fall Foliage Color 2017 reports

Color continues to develop mostly in the higher regions. The last few weeks of summertime temperatures slowed the transition, so colors may be delayed in areas. Best color now is above 4,000 feet elevation, including NC Highway 215 near the Parkway and the Parkway north of Linville Falls to Grandfather Mountain and Rough Ridge. Note: Many trees, especially in the highest elevations, have been stressed by high winds from Irma, followed by weeks of summer-like temps and very dry weather. So many ridges above 5,500 feet peak peak have mostly brown hues or leafless trees, while valley views are still green. Watch for more updates on our Facebook page.
Weather Outlook: Thanks to tropical moisture left from the remnants of Hurricane Nate, this week will feel more like the tropics. It will be unseasonably warm and humid with showers. Often cloudy and rain showers create the most dramatic photographs!


Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 10, 2017

Lake Sabrina Fall Color 10/9/17

Lake Sabrina Boat Landing reports

yellows, golds, oranges and reds ringing the Lake

See photos at This Week’s Report

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 10, 2017

San Juan National Forest 10/10/17

San Juan National Forest reports

Estimated Percentage of Current Fall Foliage:
Durango to Purgatory – 85%-0%
Molas Pass – 90%-0%
Silverton/Red Mtn Pass – 85%-0%
Pagosa – 75%
Dolores to Lizard Head Pass – 85%-0%
Mancos/La Platas – 90%-0%
Ouray to Telluride – 85%-0%

Areas with Greatest Amount of Color / Recommended Viewing Areas: Creek and river canyons below 8000 feet.

Estimated Peak Viewing Period: Past peak for most aspen.  Some good riverside colors still visible in places

Viewing Suggestions / Tips: Individual stands can still be going but otherwise follow the rivers for cottonwoods and willows.

Trees That Are Currently Turning Color: Cottonwoods and willows are best right now.
Some choke cherry, service berry, and Box Elder trees.

For More Information on Fall Colors Please Contact: San Juan Public Lands Center, Durango (970) 247-4874

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 10, 2017

California Fall Color Reports 10/10/17

California Fall Color has a number of new reports this morning. Here are the highlights with photo links.

Plumas County – When the Indian Rhubarb start to burn orange, red, yellow and green in Plumas County, there are few more striking places to be to see fall color in California than along one of its streams.
Plumas County is the northernmost end of the Sierra in the vast
Indian rhubarb, black oak and bigleaf maple are the predominant sources of fall color.
Though, exotic trees planted in its towns mix with the native color to create dramatic showy scenes, like that of the exotic maple planted behind the Plumas Superior Courthouse in Quincy, contrasted with a native maple seen along Big Creek road.
just above Bucks Lake, on the road to the dam and just off the road aspen peaking at 5,600′.
What!? Peaking aspen at 5,600′ when they haven’t peaked above 9,000′ at some locations in the Eastern Sierra? What gives?
This continues to be one of the earliest autumn peaks for the Northern Sierra and one of the latest for the Eastern Sierra.
Plumas County – Near Peak (50-75%) GO NOW!
See photos at Wonder-Filled Plumas

Jenkinson Lake near Sly Park in the Gold Country (El Dorado County)
The southeast side of the lake is especially beautiful” though is on point by pointing out that “in line with the rest of the state, it is a patchy display. All the leaves are close to reaching their peak with the lime leaves of bright aspens and oak spotted with some red, yellow and pink that are ahead of the pack.”
“The southeast finger of the lake is narrow and the beautiful blues and teal of the water are contrasted by dark greens of pines and pops of bright yellow from the trees spotting the embankment, definitely the best part of the lake’s scenery.”The varieties that dominate this area are pacific dogwood, black oak and bigleaf maple.
Jenkinson Lake, Sly Park (3,400′) – Patchy
See photos a Harlequin Color Pops at Jenkinson Lake

Color Along I-80 and At Tahoe spot of color behind Rainbow Lodge on the South Yuba River.
Rainbow Lodge, Soda Springs (6,768′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW!
South Lake Tahoe at the Spring Creek Recreational Tract near Emerald Bay and found color peaking there, too.
Zephyr Cove on the Nevada side of Tahoe and found more orange to share.
See photos at Color Along I-80 and At Tahoe

Lassen National Park –  Lassen Volcanic National Park  “most of the color is at peak” or just Past Peak.
Of course, this is a national park, so there are quite a number of colorful native varieties to be enjoyed: knotweed (crimson), pearly everlastings (vanilla), Lichen (chartreuse), willows (brassy), alder (yellow), dogwood (rose), black cottonwood (gold) and quaking aspen (yellow to red).
Of those, the cottonwood and aspen are Near Peak, with one to three weeks of peak still to go.
The rest are Past Peak.
As for the wind, it only blew “turned” leaves from the trees. Trees whose leaves were in the process of turning still have their leaves, and because so much of California’s autumn has been staggered, the show will go on for weeks ahead.
One of the prime areas to still see the show in the national park is at Manzanita Lake, where Lassen Peak reflections are seen. This is particularly nice at sunset, when the volcano is lit with alpenglow. Several of these shots were taken along the park road near Dersch Meadow, Hat Creek Meadow and Summit Lake, near 7000′.
Lassen Volcanic National Park (8,500′) – Near Peak (50-75%) GO NOW! to Past Peak (You Missed It.)
See photos at  Fire in the Wind

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 10, 2017

Asteroid Sweeps Close To Earth Oct. 11-12

EarthSky reports

The Center for Near Earth Object Studies (CNEOS) at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California – and other astronomers and observatories around the globe – have had their eye on a small asteroid, designated 2012 TC4. It’ll pass close to Earth on October 11-12, 2017.—–the object will pass around 30,000 miles (50,000 km) above Earth’s surface

2012 TC4 will come closest to Earth around 05:42 UTC on October 12 (12:42 a.m. CDT;

Read more at Asteroid to sweep close October 11-12 | Human World | EarthSky

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 9, 2017

California Fall Color Reports 10/9/17

California Fall Color has the following new reports:

Convict Lake (7,850′) – Patchy to Near Peak (10-75%) – GO NOW!
beside the lake to find the trees 50/50 in lime and yellow. That promises more color to come over the coming two weeks.

Lundy Canyon (7,858′) – Near Peak (50-75%) – GO NOW!
Lundy Canyon, to the north in Mono County, Near Peak and “Glorious!”

McGee Creek – The peak color starts above the trailhead parking lot. Down canyon, Near Peak and Patchy conditions exist, meaning that the show will continue for another two weeks at McGee (conditions permitting).
McGee Creek (8,600′) – Near Peak – GO NOW!

Upper Rock Creek (9,000′ to 10,300′) – Peak GO NOW! –Similar to what is happening elsewhere, there’s a varied mix of color in the groves, though Upper Rock Creek is a consistent Peak (75%-100%). The area around Rock Creek Lake is especially stunning right now, and a short hike on the Hilton Lakes Trail provides a great introduction to the beautiful color–with Bear Creek Spire and surrounding peaks serving as an awe-inspiring backdrop.

June Lake Loop (7,654′) – Near Peak GO NOW! – There is a lot more variation here than the aforementioned locations–some groves are still sporting lots of green, while others are brimming with yellow and orange glow.  the Loop in its entirety as “Near Peak” (50%-75%), but some groves are already Peak (75%-100%). For instance, the grove along the north shore of Silver Lake has peaked, but the aspen lining the south side of June Lake are Near Peak with probably a week to go before Peak.

Bishop Creek (8,000′ to 9,768′) – Peak GO NOW! –Most of the canyon has moved dramatically toward peak color, with “the Cardinal Village area is really popping right now. There is a beautiful pond on the property that is surrounded by white granite boulders and aspens–all of which are now peaking out in a vibrant yellow.”|
there are still many green aspen on the hillside above where the aspen are at peak. Though also in the photograph, some stands are now Past Peak.

Carson Pass/Luther Pass

auburn, orange, gold, yellow and lime-colored grasses, willows and shrubs carpeting Alpine meadows. Aspen are near peak to Peak in a few locations, though will be closer to peak this weekend.
Hope Valley (7,000-8,000’) – Near Peak (50 – 75%) GO NOW! – Aspen are somewhat patchy, depending on the grove.
Luther Pass (7,740′) – Patchy – Groves on the east side of Luther Pass are still quite green, whereas Hope Valley has many large yellow groves.

See Photos at Carson Pass/Luther Pass

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 9, 2017

E.P.A. Announces Repeal of Major Obama-Era Carbon Emissions Rule

The New York Times reports

The Trump administration announced Monday that it would take formal steps to repeal President Barack Obama’s signature policy to curb greenhouse gas emissions from power plants, setting up a bitter fight over the future of America’s efforts to tackle global warming.

Read full story at E.P.A. Announces Repeal of Major Obama-Era Carbon Emissions Rule

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 9, 2017

Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge In Big Sur To Open Oct. 13

The Monterey Herald  reports

Caltrans says the new Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge will open Oct. 13, eight months after the transportation agency shut down the bridge along Highway 1 just south of Big Sur Station.

Read full story: Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge in Big Sur to open Oct. 13

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 9, 2017

Eastern Sierra Fall Color 10/8/17


Where to photograph in California – Yahoo Groups (Calphoto) has an Eastern Sierra fall color report

I am not sure how to label this year.  Some places had good color and some places not so good.  Perhaps over all it is average.

  • Green Creek Road – Excellent, go now
  • June Lake Loop – Very Good in spots, no disappointment
  • Sagehen Summit – past peak
  • Dundenberg Mill – a mixture of past peak and getting there
  • Conway Summit – a mixture of just past peak and getting there
  • Dundenberg Mill  – from 395 just north of Conway Summit – Spectacular
  • Lee Vining Canyon – Looking good – almost there
Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 9, 2017

Bears Are Especially Active In The Fall

California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) and the U.S. Forest Service News Release

Fall is the Season for Heightened Bear Activity in the High Country and Foothills

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) and the U.S. Forest Service remind citizens visiting or living in the high country and foothills that fall is the time of year for increased bear foraging activity and more human and bear encounters are possible.

California black bears are typically active and foraging between April and mid-fall, but in autumn, black bears experience changes in metabolism that drives the need to consume as many rich calories as possible. This metabolic spike is an important signal to the bear to bulk up and gain the fat that will sustain the animal through hibernation and periods of lean food sources. Scientists estimate that black bears may forage as many as 20 hours a day at this time.

Read More…

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 8, 2017

California Fall Color Updates 10/8/17

California Fall Color has several new posts today

 Mount San Jacinto State Park The bright gold of peaking willows, grasses and ferns becomes intensified at sunset at Mount San Jacinto State Park above Palm Springs.
the best color seems to be along the creek between Long Valley and Tamarack valley between 8500′ and 9000′, only a short walk from the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway station. taking the tram up to hike the mountains any time of year, though in autumn, the colors provide extra incentive.
Mount San Jacinto State Park, above Palm Springs (8,516′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! Mt. San Jacinto – A Palm Springs PeakSee photo at

Hope Valley – there is more color than a week ago, many areas of the Hope Valeyu are still “mostly green.”
More yellow, orange and red surround Red Creek cabin, though the groves above the cabin are still mostly green.
Give it a week to two for peak color.
On the south side of CA-88 by Red Lake Creek you’ll find lots of color. Heading east past Blue Lakes Road, the large grove (across the cattle pasture to the north) is nearing peak, and groves above along the mountainside are turning yellow.
west of the West Carson down in Hope Valley is looking good with some orange, a lot of yellows, and still much green.
Sorensens as peaking
As you drive Luther Pass (CA-89) toward South Lake Tahoe  the aspen are still mostly green and there wasn’t much color from there all the way to Truckee.
the aspen leaves, this year, lack luster. One way to get around that is to photograph the leaves blacklit, as many frontally lit leaves have a dull cast to them, this autumn.
See photos at  Still Mostly Green in the Hope Valley

Big Bear – in the Inland Empire’s San Bernardino Mountains, is nearing peak with both native forests and landscaped yards full of color.
–  black oak, carrying uncharacteristically golden leaves at Green Valley Lake and exotics dressing  home in the town of Big Bear.
– “the leaves are definitely over 50% peak in Big Bear. Probably closer to 75% now… lots of beautiful colors over the past few days.”
Big Bear (6,752′) – Near Peak (50-75%) GO NOW! See photos at  Big Bear Goes Big

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 8, 2017

Birding Elsie Roemer Bird Sanctuary 10/8/17

Today I went birding at Elsie Roemer.  Elsie Roemer Bird Sanctuary is at the east end of Marsh Beach in the town of Alameda. It harbors aquatic birds and other salt marsh creatures. It was between tides, sunny, in the 60’s F with a slight breeze. There were very large numbers of shorebirds, which is what makes this one of the Bay Area’s top shorebird areas. We saw 29 different species.

There were  very  large numbers (100’s) of Black-bellied Plovers, Sanderlings, Western Shorebirds, Willets,  and Marbled Godwits today. Terns were also seen in large numbers, both Elegant and Forster’s.

Also seen were Anise Swallowtail and Gulf Fritillary butterflies.

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Click Read more to see today’s bird list

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