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2020 Foliage Season is Winding Down

October 22, 2020

"We’ve had a spectacular season this year. Much of the state is considered past peak right now, but there are still pockets of color to discover in the southern areas of the state, including the Connecticut River Valley and the Champlain Valley.

Beyond leaf peeping, there are plenty of ways to enjoy Vermont’s mountains, meadows and villages. Late October sees the emergence of pumpkin people on street corners, porches, and country lanes. Even during these difficult times of social-distancing, there are plenty of upcoming events (both virtual and in-person), including hayrides, haunted houses, and more.

We're approaching the end of this year's Foliage Season and we might only have one more week of reports here at Vermont.com. Keep checking this page as we continue to gather information from our "Leaf Squad" to report on the foliage conditions throughout the state!

Reports are typically updated weekly, on THURSDAYS.

Between reports, you can find some gorgeous Vermont Fall scenery in our Autumn Photo Gallery, thanks to local photographers and visitors to Vermont. But truly, you've got to be here to fully enjoy the leaves. And remember, it's never too late to plan a fall vacation in Vermont!"

-- Vermont.com


The "Current Conditions" map is approximate, based on the reports we receive.

Foliage color generally starts to change in the higher, cooler areas, spreading down into the valleys, and moving from north to south across the state.

'Peak' colors can be found at many different times & places as the season progresses, and the timing varies from year to year, based on the weather.

Current Conditions:

Vermont Foliage Map

Beyond leaf peeping, there are plenty of ways to enjoy Vermont’s mountains, meadows and villages during the fall. Discover Vermont Fall Festivals and other fun things to do in Vermont with our Vermont.com Calendar of Events. Don't see your event? Feel free to suggest an event so we can add it to our Calendar.

COVID-19 REMINDER

Masks are mandatory in public places effective 8/1/20. #MasksOnVT

If you're planning to attend an event in Vermont, please check directly with the event to see if it has been rescheduled.

 


FOLIAGE REPORTS FROM AROUND THE STATE

The Vermont.com Foliage Reports are provided thanks to the Vermont Department of Tourism, and by volunteer members of our "Leaf Squad" from around the state. To submit a report for your area, please send it to Foliage@Vermont.com, along with a photo of the location you are reporting from, and the date when the photo was taken.

To view past Foliage Reports, visit the Vermont.com Blog.

For more info on current conditions, call Vermont's Seasonal Hotline at (802)828-3239 ... and tell them Vermont.com sent you!


Northern Vermont Map    Central Vermont Map    Southern Vermont Map


NORTHERN VERMONT:

 
October 14, 2020 in Jeffersonville, VT
Vermont Fall Foliage at Smugglers Notch Resort

"While by many people’s definition, we have now passed 'peak,' the colors are still bright at Smugglers’ Notch! High alpine birches have lost their leaves, with the green spruces and firs remaining, but in the lower elevations, many of those birches, poplars, and maples still hold on to their colorful coats of foliage.

This is the last weekend to enjoy the Fox Run Meadows disc golf course, but the Brewster Ridge disc golf course (ranked 8th best in the world) remains open for another week. Fire up those hashtags and catch the remaining color soon! Rumor has it, there’s snow in the forecast for the mountaintops for this weekend, making the perfect backdrop for snowliage photos. Fire up those hashtags and catch the remaining color soon!"

-- Mike Chait, PR Director, Smugglers' Notch Resort

 

CENTRAL VERMONT:

 
October 21, 2020 in Mendon, VT
Vermont Fall Foliage at the Red Clover Inn

"What a beautiful fall it has been! This week we are open for drinks and dinner on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Call us to guarantee your table. Come by this weekend to enjoy Chef Mike's creative cuisine, custom cocktails, good friends and good times.

Now is the time... foliage season is winding down... starting Sunday, October 25, we are taking a late fall break and will see you in December. Thank you for all your support in this crazy year!"

-- Carol Ryan, Innkeeper, Red Clover Inn & Restaurant

 
 

SOUTHERN VERMONT:

 
October 21, 2020 in Manchester, VT
Vermont Fall Foliage at The Barnstead Inn

"Well, our micro-resort/boutique inn has finally found peak foliage on our private 2 acre slice of downtown Manchester. Our maple trees are all fiery red and orange with yellow. The grass is growing slower but is a lush green from the much needed rain the last couple of weeks and our corn hole boards are begging the competitive to come try it out. Town and lower elevations still have fantastic color but it’s past peak in the surrounding mountain tops.

Some unseasonably warm days again this week call for yet another pop-up pizza night this Friday 10/23 from 4-8pm out of our little, wood-fired brick oven building that you see in this picture just beside our footbridge. 'The best pizza around,' is what we hear every night! Come check it out, enjoy the bold foliage that we have. Plus, the tavern will be serving local beer, wine and spirits, and the fire pits lit.' See you then!"

-- Andrea Conrad, Owner/Manager, The Barnstead Inn

 
October 21, 2020 in Bondville, VT

"We coined a new term this past weekend -- Snowliage. Exchanging scenic fall colors for a blanket of snow, Southern Vermont's Highest Peak saw about four inches at the summit, according some brave hikers. In the valley we are still hanging on to vivid oranges and reds. Though the snow has melted, driving up the access road plenty of trees remain full dressed in their autumn best.

I suspect days of these warm rides into work are numbered, so too are the days of reporting on the foliage. Perhaps we'll squeak one more in next week.

For information about lodging and travel guidance please visit our website. "

-- Luke Robins, Stratton Mountain Resort

 
October 21, 2020 in Grafton, VT
Vermont Fall Foliage at The Grafton Inn

"Despite the majority of our surroundings being past peak at this point, there are a few late-changing trees that still make a stroll through Grafton village picturesque in these final foliage days. As we say goodbye to foliage season and head into late fall, we're shifting our focus to Thanksgiving dinner at the Inn (available on-site with a reservation or to-go!) as well as safe and enjoyable outdoor activities at the Grafton Trails & Outdoor Center. Stay tuned!"

-- Ali Pierre, The Grafton Inn

 
October 21, 2020 in Manchester, VT
Vermont Fall Foliage at the Kimpton Taconic Hotel

"As the fall season winds down, we are still seeing glimpses of the beautiful foliage here in Southern Vermont. This image was taken at the Kimpton Taconic Hotel and shows the deep shades of red and orange. We encourage you to participate in our Annual Sale where you can find some great hotel deals. But don’t delay. The sale will be over as quick as the leaves will be off the trees!"

-- Anastasia Nichols, Kimpton Taconic Hotel

 
October 20, 2020 in Manchester, VT
Vermont Fall Foliage at The Hampton Inn & Suites

"The Golden Hour of the month has arrived, with crisp dark reds, deep oranges, and golden hues that seem to make everything glow. Leaves are falling, and fun for the whole family continues with tours of Hildene, the Lincoln Family home, which has beautiful hill top views for miles around, trails for walking, gardens for perusing, and an observatory! Enjoy the Manchester River Walk, shopping along Main Street, and dining in our heated outdoor cafe’s, all a short walk away from us at the Manchester Hampton Inn & Suites. Book your stay today and inquire about Hilton Honors double points and rewards!"

-- Colleen Mullaney, Hampton Inn & Suites

 
October 19, 2020 in Manchester, VT
Vermont Fall Foliage at the Manchester View

"Leaf-peeping crowds have subsided, with the color still going strong. Some leaves have fallen due to the weekend rain, yet there's still so much beauty to behold. As the weather cools, majestic sunrises and sunsets fill the vista surrounding the Manchester View."

-- Robin Green, The Manchester View

 
 

STATEWIDE:

October 22, 2020
Vermont Fall Foliage

"Even as this last chapter of another spectacular foliage season nears completion, the closing lines are yet to be written. Pockets of splendid color remain, particularly in southern areas of the state, while roadsides and village greens are still punctuated by standout trees in striking hues that beckon passersby to stop and photograph. The spotlight has turned to late-turning species like oak, aspen, birch and tamarack, whose crimsons, coppers and golds are enhanced by the rich bronze of beech trees, which stubbornly hold onto their leaves through winter.

Even as branches are bare in much of the forest, leaves on the ground create mosaics of color underfoot (not to mention prime conditions for jumping in a freshly raked leaf pile). This is also the time of year when the woods open up to the eye again and exploring off trail becomes more inviting. Not only can you enjoy the lingering fall color, but also the many details of the forest that you just can’t see in the thick green of summer. Venture through almost any stretch of Vermont woods this time of year and you’re likely to discover cellar holes, stone walls, or remnants of fences and pasture trees that summon earlier generations who lived on and worked the land. As we part ways with the vibrant color of fall and look forward to snow-covered adventures in winter, savor this special in-between season and explore the woods around you."

-- Mike Snyder, Commissioner of Forests, Parks & Recreation,
Vermont Department of Tourism

 

To view past Foliage Reports, visit the Vermont.com Blog.


FOLIAGE TIPS:

Foliage in Vermont Best Bets: During the earliest part of foliage season, viewing is more about elevation than location. Your best chances for spotting color are to 'get high' or 'get low.' Higher elevations with panoramic views will allow you to spot smatterings of color in the valleys below. Alternatively, you can 'get low' - marshy areas near bodies of water typically offer the first areas of foliage change and also offer a wide variety of tree species which enlarges the palette of early season colors.

Helpful Tip: Plan Ahead!
Foliage season is a very popular time to visit Vermont, so if you want to stay in a particular place on a particular weekend, call in advance to make sure rooms are available. Having your lodging plans made in advance will avoid unnecessary stress and allow you to enjoy your foliage season odyssey. Also too, it is a good idea to make dining reservations as early as possible in the day or even the night before.

When To Come For 'Peak' Foliage:
There is no one 'perfect' time to visit Vermont to see peak foliage. Color change begins in mid-September and runs through the first two to three weeks in October and varies by elevation, progressing from north to south and higher to lower elevations during the course of the season. As such, there are many 'peaks' so that you can make your plans based on the timing and location that works for you.

Science Behind the Leaves Changing Colors:
During the short summer months, broad-leafed trees such as maples, oaks and birches produce food to nourish themselves for growth. They do this through a process known as photosynthesis, using the energy of the sun to produce food. As the days grow shorter in early fall, the increasing periods of darkness trigger leafy plants to slow down photosynthesis and stop growing. A pigment in the leaves called chlorophyll (which gives leaves their green color) is used in photosynthesis, so the slowing of this process means there is less green pigment. But leaves contain pigments other than green, called carotenoids and anthocyanins. Once the greens fade, carotenoids are revealed (yellow, orange, and brown colors), anthocyanins and are produced (red and purple colors).

Certain colors are characteristic of particular plant species. Red maples live up to their name by turning scarlet, while most sugar maples glow a warm orange. Aspen and birches display sunny yellows, while oak and beech leaves turn bronze and gold. Most of Vermont's fall foliage color is provided by red and sugar maples, two resilient tree species that constitute more than 50 percent of our forest's trees. You can find even more details on leaves and their changing colors, courtesy of the US Forest Service: Why Leaves Change Colors


Find more info about Fall Foliage in New England,
from photographer Jeff "Foliage" Folger.


Vermont Fall Foliage Season
from the Vermont Department of Tourism




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