Sarah Wilson in the Smokies
Fall is a beautiful time of the year to be outside and catching the peak of our state’s leaf change is a highlight. Howard S. Neufeld, biology professor at Appalachian State University, has been forecasting the leaf change cycle for years. Dr. Neufeld is the North Carolina Division of Tourism’s official “Fall Color Guy” and provides his predictions on autumn glory at http://biology.appstate.edu/fall-colors/fall-color-week-october-9-2011 Dr. Neufeld says,
“There is still plenty of color throughout the mountains which should persist through next weekend. In fact, some areas haven’t yet peaked, and this coming weekend should be their time to show off. This year has been a real guessing game with respect to how brilliant and intense the colors will be, but based on the drive I took on Saturday, I’d say this year’s colors rank 9 on a scale of 10, where 10 is the best it can be. So, if you want to see some great fall foliage, this is the year to do it!”
So to help you plan your trip our staff has the following suggestions where you are sure to find autumn’s blaze of glory.
1) Grandfather Mountain State Park – Check out the colors at their peak!
2) Hanging Rock State Park – Sourwoods and Black Gums are among the first trees to change.
3) Wiseman’s View at Linville Gorge – The Grand Canyon of North Carolina
4) Nantahala National Forest – Be sure to drive along Cherohala Scenic Byway
5) Shining Rock Wilderness Area – The Art Loeb Trail is a great Hike
Enjoy this wonderful Fall!