Fall Foliage: Don’t Wait, Go This Weekend!

By Terry Eliasen, Meteorologist, WBZ-TV Exec. Weather Producer

BOSTON (CBS) – The reviews are pouring in – this fall foliage season is a 5-star winner!

The trees of New England are defying the odds and pessimistic predictions of a down year given the drought. The colors up north right now are insane, off the chain, spectacular!   You pick the adjective. And the wave of reds, oranges and yellows are headed south to a neighborhood near you!

The sun shines on the chairlift at King Pine amidst brilliant fall color. (Photo credit: Thomas Prindle/King Pine Photo Library)

The sun shines on the chairlift at King Pine amidst brilliant fall color. (Photo credit: Thomas Prindle/King Pine Photo Library)

Thinking of taking a drive this weekend? DO IT! You won’t be disappointed, I promise.

So, where to go?  There are so many great spots and so little time. Let’s break down the region and help you plan out the perfect ride/hike/mini vacation/fair/festival this weekend.

JUST PAST PEAK

Far northern New England.  Okay, so last week in this blog we recommended that you head north, the farther the better. While the leaves are mostly still on the trees in far northern locations of New Hampshire, Maine and Vermont, many have gone just past peak.

A view of Crawford Notch with peak foliage on Oct 12, 2016. (Photo credit: Eric Kaminsky)

A view of Crawford Notch with peak foliage on Oct 12, 2016. (Photo credit: Eric Kaminsky)

The same goes for the highest elevations of the White Mountains as well. I don’t think you will be disappointed.  However, the absolute brightest, most vivid colors have now descended down to slightly lower elevations.

The Omni Mt. Washington Hotel is surrounded by fall color.  (Photo credit Eric Kaminsky)

The Omni Mt. Washington Hotel is surrounded by fall color on Oct. 12, 2016. (Photo credit: Eric Kaminsky)

NOW PEAKING/GETTING CLOSE

Most of the Green Mountain area of Vermont, elevations 3,000-to-4,000 feet and lower in central and northern New Hampshire and nearly the entire state of Maine (away from the coastline) area at absolute peak.

The Conway Scenic Railroad makes its way through Crawford Notch over Columbus Day weekend. (Photo credit: Dan Houde/WiseguyCreative.com.)

The Conway Scenic Railroad makes its way through Crawford Notch over Columbus Day weekend. (Photo credit: Dan Houde/WiseguyCreative.com.)

Don’t have time to drive that far?

You could simply head to the Monadnock Region of southern New Hampshire or even parts of the Worcester Hills and farther west into the Berkshires. These locations will be at their peak sometime between this weekend and next.  There are certainly lots of color to be seen! Also approaching peak in the next 7 days includes lower elevation locations such as the Winnipesaukee area, North Conway, and along the river valleys of the Connecticut and Saco.

STILL WAITING

Another week or two before the colors are peaking right along the coastlines of southern Maine, New Hampshire and most of Massachusetts. And, since these areas are some of the most affected by the drought, the colors may not be quite as vibrant as those to the north and west. Still, it’s hard to complain.

And last but not least, how about the weather?

Near perfection!

Unlike last weekend when we had a couple of gloomy days (and a very soggy Sunday in parts), this weekend promises to be much more viewer friendly.

Saturday will be the sunniest day of the two, from mountaintop to seashore, abundant sunshine along with seasonal temperatures (50s and low 60s).

Sunday will be more of a mixture of sun and clouds, but quite mild (60s and low 70s).

And thanks to a very quiet week last week, no big rainfall or strong winds, most of the leaves remain on the trees throughout all of New England.

So get out and celebrate the season! This is, after all, one of the great benefits of living in New England. Nobody does the fall season like we do and this year is turning out to be one of the best in years.

Enjoy!

And send us your favorite pics to weather@wbztv.com

Follow Terry on Twitter @TerryWBZ

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