Inland colors, especially maples along the ridge lines turn first with the birch and aspen providing a follow-up season of gold. Fall colors occur from early September through about the third week of October with maple colors peaking the last week of September into the first week of October. The next week the golden peak season occurs. A warmer than usual summer and ample moisture should delay colors by a week or so.
Rainfall and temps affect both when the colors occur and how long they last, so it is variable each year. Starting Labor Day, I will provide weekly fall color reports with suggested tours each Thursday.
Get the update below.
October 19th Fall Color . . . Past Peak
What you’ll see: The Golden Highway: Highway 61 is flanked by gold and yellow and orange and rust birch, aspen, and underbrush, making the drive extra lovely. Maples are past peak and the further northeast you get the fewer leaves remain. However, that always makes for improved views of Lake Superior. By Monday, October 23rd most trees will be bare.
This photo is from Sugarloaf Cove Nature Center in Schroeder.
FINAL UPDATE –> refresh your browser to make sure you are seeing the most up-to-date report
Scroll to the bottom of the page, then to see a slide show, click on a photo. Each week, I will add photos so you will be able to see the progression of color change throughout the season. And click below to see this week’s tour recommendations!Last Updated: 10-18-2017
Percent Color Change :: 100%
The drive is especially gorgeous with Lake Superior sparkling and blue to the south and stands of yellow and gold aspens to the north.
Percent Color Change :: Past Peak
Everyone is preparing for winter. Migrating birds can be seen heading south, watch warblers during the mid-day warmth catch insects or view hawks soar south along the bluffs. Mice, chipmunks and squirrels are preparing their dens and nests, gathering downy material for insulation, nuts and berries. In quieter areas of the park, the ruffed and spruce grouse have been seen along the trails. Deer are also active during morning and late afternoon hours.
You will see a mix of green, yellow, orange, red and maroon. From Pebble Beach you’ll see the historic Split Rock Lighthouse on top of a 130-foot anorthosite cliff. You can’t go wrong hiking to the top of Day Hill to get a panoramic view of the North Shore of Lake Superior. Most of the color is on the ground but it is still worth the hike!
The inland trees have mostly dropped their leaves but there is still some color along the North Shore. Although there are pockets of gold and a few blazing orange/red shrubs, the show is mostly over, folks. Forecast winds and rain could end it all in the coming days.
Percent Color Change :: 100% and past
The fall colors are at their peak and just past peak colors this week in the Tofte area. There are still plenty of leaves hanging on the trees but the forest floor is slowly starting to gather the colorful gifts from the maple, birch, and aspens. Our fall color report photo is from the nearby Sugarloaf Cove nature and recreation area.
This report provided by BLUEFIN BAY FAMILY OF RESORTS
The leaves are dropping, but some beautiful golds are still glowing among their neighbor’s bare branches. The Trails along the lake or along the river have the best chance of still seeing some color.
At & Past Peak
Mostly golds and yellows which are nicely offset by the deep green of the pines. Head to the harbor and appreciate the big lake, but then turn around for expansive views of the hillside, nice!
Percent Color Change :: 100%
The fall colors on Gunflint Lake are just beyond peak. The attached picture is from Lookout Point.
The hiking trails near Gunflint Lake still have some color. As the days progress, the best colors should be in the wetlands since the tamaracks are starting to turn yellow, and they make a great contrast with the black spruces and white cedars.
This report provided by GUNFLINT LODGE
Fall winds and frost have brought many of the leaves down, but there are still patches of brilliant color. Visitors still find the Devil’s Kettle Trail and the waterfalls fascinating, especially during this week of warmer fall weather.
Bunches of flowers hang on in sheltered pockets, reluctant leaves cling to Red Osier, Mountain Maple, birches and aspen. Most of the color is subdued now, but the understory still shows some vibrant color.
Leaf colors are past their peak but we still have quite a bit of color in the Grand Portage area, especially along the Lake Superior shoreline. The Maples have lost all their leaves but many of the Birch, Aspen and Tamarack are still displaying golden yellow and orange.