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2021 Foliage Season: Final Report

October 28, 2021

The 2021 Foliage Season is coming to an end and we have enjoyed a spectacular foliage season in Vermont this year. By now, most of the state is considered "past peak," with a only few hidden pockets of color left. Any remaining color won't last long now, and as we move thru "stick season," the chill in the air is a reminder that a white blanket of snow will soon be upon us.

If you couldn't make it to Vermont during this year's Fall Foliage Season, 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. You can find 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 NOTICE

Due to the Delta variant, things are changing rapidly. We recommend that if you are 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. You can send us a foliage report for your area of Vermont, including a photo, description, and the location & date when the photo was taken.

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


Northern Vermont Map    Central Vermont Map    Southern Vermont Map


NORTHERN VERMONT:

October 18, 2021 in Stowe, VT
Vermont Fall Foliage at Stoweflake Mountain Resort & Spa
09/06/21
Vermont Fall Foliage at Stoweflake Mountain Resort & Spa
09/14/21
Vermont Fall Foliage at Stoweflake Mountain Resort & Spa
09/27/21


Vermont Fall Foliage at Stoweflake Mountain Resort & Spa
10/05/21
Vermont Fall Foliage at Stoweflake Mountain Resort & Spa
10/18/21

"Here is my final report. We are past peak but there is still some color around. It was very warm on Saturday with storms moving through on Saturday evening. Cooler on Sunday, finally felt like fall. We lost a lot of leaves over the weekend from the storm, and that changed our foliage conditions dramatically. We have a mix of some peak trees and some trees that are past."

-- Scot Baraw, Stoweflake Mountain Resort & Spa

 

CENTRAL VERMONT:

No Current Reports for Central Vermont

 

SOUTHERN VERMONT:

October 25, 2021 in Manchester, VT
Vermont Fall Foliage at the Manchester View

"Although leaf-peeping season is over, there's still color to find. Look at the view at the Green Mountains beyond the Manchester View property to see what looks like an impressionist painting with dots of orange, red and yellow among the evergreens. Along the roads, a maple here and there will delight with bright orange leaves. The crisp cool autumn air is perfect for hiking and biking, as well as local and outlet store and gallery hopping. Whether you visited the Manchester and the Mountains region or missed the chance this past fall, now is the best time to reserve for next year."

-- Robin Green, The Manchester View

 

STATEWIDE:

October 22, 2021

"Vibrant reds, oranges, and yellows continue in Southern Vermont and the Champlain Valley, and isolated, protected forest coves and pockets in other parts of the state still pop with color as well. And while most of the leaves have fallen in other areas, the landscape is still touched with fall beauty as color transitions from high in the trees to below on the forest floor, village greens, and backyard lawns. This time of year, tamaracks emerge as quieter standouts, transitioning from olive to gold and contrasting with the darker shades of evergreens around them.

Over the past 30 years, FPR forest health staff and colleagues in forest science have documented that the length of the forest’s growing season has increased by over a week. This year’s foliage season was deliciously slow and made more gradual in part because of a lack of frost, but the lengthened growing season caused by climate change also contributes to these extended foliage conditions.

And while the 2021 foliage season may be drawing to a close, there’s still plenty to explore and admire in the landscape of Vermont. Venture out into the woods and you’ll rediscover scenes that were hidden through summer and fall: stone walls, cellar holes, and other historic remnants of generations past who lived and worked the land; habitat features; tree architecture showcasing each tree’s distinct form and shape; and new recreation opportunities to scout out."

-- Mike Snyder, Commissioner of Forest, Parks and 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


FOLIAGE FORECASTER

Please note: This is only an approximation of typical foliage color progression. The exact timing of the color change varies year to year.

To use this map:
  • Click the << icon to view the season stages color key.
  • You can scroll through the weekly dates at the bottom of the map.

 



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