Fall foliage Drive on 29 September 2010…
Today is the beginning of August but this morning felt like a New England fall foliage morning in September. The air was cool, but not so that you would want to be inside, rather it felt invigorating. This weekend it’ll be back up in the 90s so just for this moment, I could imagine that this is a few months later and I’m looking out on fall foliage in New England.
The start of the foliage drive
Lisa and I started our day’s journey and even though it was only the 29th September, we decided that instead of pushing to northern Vermont or New Hampshire we would head to the mid-section of NH and VT.
Due to reports of earlier than normal color we wanted to vary our routine. I’m normally up in sugar Hill NH looking for peak fall foliage. Today I got off the highway at Henniker, NH and we located the Henniker covered bridge, which had a little color around it.
After that we drove the back roads towards Vermont and we came upon a low farm building with farm equipment on the roof??? (If you click the photo of Hans on the Segway you can see the roof w/equipment.)
I of course had to stop and photograph this and a few minutes after stopping the farmer came out of the barn to see what we were doing. What made this unusual was that he was on a Segway. He told us that he had health problems and this was the doctors way for him to get around the farm and not wear himself out.
Hans Eccardt, the farmer has all the usual troubles in life from getting enough money for his products to raising animals and passing his farm down to his kids. I have to admit this is the first time I’d seen a farm museum as a way for a farmer to make money on top of selling produce.
We left his farm driving the back roads of New Hampshire. We don’t like to drive the main roads when we go exploring. This doesn’t mean I want to go 4 wheeling with my Gran Marquis, but I still want to find things that you won’t see every day.
What follows are some of the scenes and arts that Lisa and I found during our foliage travels through New Hampshire and Vermont.
Even though it was still very early in the season for fall foliage color, Lisa and I were finding very pleasing color. Like most of you, I go traveling to these areas to find old barns with a backdrop of orange or red Maples and golden hued Birch. What do you go looking for??? Leave a comment!
Occasionally like this day we found two new covered bridges. Earlier in the morning it was the Henniker covered bridge and in the afternoon it was the Prentiss covered bridge (number 19). It’s been restored and moved to the side of the road to sit out its days in relative comfort.
The Fort at number four
We stopped at the Fort at number four, which is right on the banks of the Connecticut River and if you go to Charlestown proceeding up route 12 then cutting over on Route 11 towards the river you will find the signs for the Fort. Mostly they’re only open on the weekends once October rolls around, they have reenactments and at the end of October, they have Halloween events for the kids.
The Jenne farm.
It’s not easy to find the Jenne farm but if you go to Woodstock and come out on route 4 West out of Woodstock you should find the Jenne farm road. If you don’t think you can find it you can go online to Arnold Kaplan’s website and purchase his pamphlet on all the Vermont classic scenic locations. Over the past 50 years as a photographer, he has been recording all the locations of classic iconic Vermont scenes and he has put them into a pamphlet so you can locate them also.
I want you to realize that I was photographing at the wrong time of day. It was around 3PM, when Lisa and I arrived at the Jenne farm.
This is also the mid section of Vermont (Woodstock) so the color was just starting. To me this is incredible because I normally send folks up to the northern sections of New England to search for fall foliage. For 29 September I think the color was well ahead of it’s time.
The Jenne farm is a working farm
The first thing I want you to note that the Jenne farm is a working farm and if you appreciate them letting you walk around their farm and take pictures then you should make a donation. There is a donation box on the tree near this classic view to the left, and…
If you go down to the farmhouse, you will find they have maple syrup and produce available on the front porch where you pay on the honor system. Their maple syrup is very good, Vermont grade A!
Overall for 29 September the color was above-average and very good but at no time did I see peak fall foliage and I would not at expected to either. I would bet that if it had been a week or so later we would’ve seen much better color throughout our days travels.
2011 New England fall foliage? Prime or fizzle?
Mother Nature always holds these cards close to her chest and as we go through the rest of the summer and into early September we will have a much better feel for what is coming this fall.
Some folks noted in the fall foliage forum that weather channel (if they are to be believed), and I am not one to put my faith in the words of the weatherman, that this fall is going to be warmer than normal.
What this means for us: This could be a long drawn out fall foliage process where the color will start in mid September but we won’t see peak fall color until October. This may also mean that if we get storms like we didn’t 2010, the colors will be knocked down each time a storm comes through.
So what I want you to do is cross your fingers and hope for cooler temperatures at night and no wind and rainstorms.
If you have questions feel free to leave comments here or visit the fall foliage forum on this site and I will answer your questions to the best of my ability there.
but people call me Jeff Foliage.
I have several pages that I write blogs for such as: http://www.4cornersnewengland.com/
My most popular blog is for Leaf peepers: Jeff Foliage.com.
I live in Salem, Massachusetts and work as a blogger and Travel Photographer. I'm also the founder of the New England Photography Guild.
Feel free to visit me on my blogs and see what life in New England is like.
I started with Yankee Magazine as their first blogger on everything fall foliage. Now I blog on my own blog on my favorite subject, telling leaf peepers where the fall foliage is showing up in New England and helping them (to some extent) plan their fall foliage vacations.