Fall Foliage Forecasts and Foliage Reports

In December/January, I start looking at the weather patterns put out by the NOAA climate Prediction folks and I make my forecast or a better description is a fall foliage prediction…  based on their reports.

I also will look at Yankee Magazine’s Old Farmer’s Almanac, and then I mix it with my own experience and guesswork! So, below, you will find my GUESS about what we are going to have in the way of fall foliage for this year. Before you go changing your plans please read my Disclaimer of liability. (Don’t pass it around but I’m not perfect) 🙂

Foliage Forecasts for the 2018 season

Foliage Reports for the 2018 season

This area will begin to populate around mid to late September

These start in mid to late September, BECAUSE, even if you hear talk about “early fall color”, the real colors don’t start till then. (Normally)

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Forecasts & reports — 193 Comments

  1. I said we talk a lot. We write that way too. After I submitted our comments I read some of the others. Promise to allow my wife to edit next time. She can take for pages and reduce it to a paragraph. She used to teach foreign languages. Dau is a Fed. Lawyer. Took my 5 page resume and reduced it to half a page. Need their help next time.
    I see photo contest winners. So you do have a photo contest then is that correct. (I’m a newbie to your page.) I have lots of past work but if you have a contest I will be extra watchful this year and would like to enter. I have won with my graphics and paintings. I won and several years for photography especially while living there. Was published a number of times in Hanover news paper. So I am up for it. Any early info let me know where to look. I checked your site and only saw “comment” contests. Thanks for your art and foliage passion. DBH

  2. There are so many comments on this page that I have closed them. If you want to leave a comment for to the foliage articles and pick one to leave a comment on. I don’t want to slow down this page from loading. If you have a question, or gripe let me know… In the comments! 🙂

  3. I’ve been travelling lots over the past week and the colors aren’t very good anywhere. Not much in Toronto. Ottawa/Gatineau, which is usually beautiful around this time (especially Gatineau Park), seems to be either green or brown/leaves falling off the trees. Montreal, isn’t great either. I think it will be a disappointing year for leaves up in Canada.

    • Sorry to hear that… Well, read my blog that I just published a few minutes ago and you can see what it looks like on the Vermont border areas and New Hampshire also… Not sure if we’re really all that much better but it seems like a little better…

  4. Hello Jeff,
    I will be going to the sugarbush/Stowe area the weekend of the 16th.. Will it be too late?? What do you recommend for that weekend? Thanks

    • I think that will be either too late or the tail end of color. I would say set your sights more like Woodstock area and if there is still a lot of color up north take a drive that way…

  5. Hi Jeff,

    We are planning a very short Fall trip to NH(October 10,11&12). We are driving from Delaware. Can you please suggest good places to see colors and places to stay?

    • I try not to offer to many places to stay unless I have stayed there. but since you are coming on Columbus Day weekend. It makes it irrelevant. Please hit my Lodging affiliate page and pick one or all of them and see who is NOT booked up for that weekend. You will want to minimize driving so I would visit southern Vermont and Western Massachusetts. Old Deerfield MA is a wonderful stop and nearby is the Yankee Candle store and that one thought will eat up one day alone… Head up or down the Connecticut river and check the farms and maybe the hills around auburn MA. Take a drive to Florida also! (Florida MA is on the Mohawk trail and North Adams is a wonderful town to see and if you come east on Route 2 (the Mohawk trail) you will pass the hairpin turn (There is a hotel there) and the scenic overlooks and old stores and… if you make it to Erving (on the trail) stop at the antique place on your right and they have a little lunch counter that serves wonderful sandwiches and deserts (all home made) 🙂

  6. Hi Jeff,

    I’m trying to plan a trip up to Boston to see a friend and I’ve never been to New England. I (like everyone else) would like to see the fall foliage. I’m looking into October 14-17th.

    Day One: I was going to fly into Boston and rent a car. It was suggested that I go to Newport, RI and spend the night.
    Day Two: Then head to Cape Cod the next day. Any hotel or itinerary suggestions would be appreciated. I like supporting local restaurants, B&Bs and hoping to see some less touristy locales. I read that Sandwich, Chatham, and Longnook Beach are worth seeing.
    Day Three: Drive back to Boston with a stop at Plymouth along the way.

    It looks like it’s been warmer where you are so would it be better to wait a week or come the weekend that I had planned?

    Thanks so much for any suggestions!

    • Well you are asking the million dollar question(s). Right now with a hurricane as a possible visitor to New England I don’t know which way to go with this.
      But… I might suggest a drive west to Sturbridge Village then the Quabbin Reservoir and the small towns around it like Petersham and New Salem and then head south into CT looking at either the Litchfield hills in the west or stay closer with less driving by hitting the quiet corner of CT (route 69 is a very scenic byway..
      Then head to Warren, Little Tiverton and Compton and the over to the Cape. Old windmill in Eastham, Lighthouses in Woodshole, Chatham, Nauset beach (X2, 3 sisters and Nauset light), then Highland light and a few others….
      Come back through Plymouth and if it a meal time look at Wood’s Seafood, 15 Town Wharf, Plymouth, MA 02360 I have eaten there, Its not fancy but good.

  7. Some awesome colors along side Rte 7 and Rte 100 and any of the gap roads, like Lincoln Gap and Rte 125. South of Shelburne to Killington. Saw them September 29th, 2015

  8. Hi Jeff. Your website is great. I recently moved to Quebec and was thinking of heading down either this Thursday (the 1st) or next Thursday (the 8th), just for the day. So I probably won’t get very far south. I was thinking of hitting Ben and Jerry’s, so probably not south of that. Which weekend would you recommend? I saw that another person asked about Stowe around these dates as well, but that was about a week ago, so I was thinking that you might have an update. Do you still think next weekend is best? Again, thanks for this great site.

    • Actually this Thursday is looking kind of sunny, next Thursday not so much. but we look like clouds most of next week… So I may lean forward to this week… Just my opinion mind you… BTW, what are the colors like up your way?

  9. Jeff, Any particular resorts, lodging you recommend in Merrimack Valley? And by Salem, are you referring to Salem, Massachusetts?

    • Yup Salem Massachusetts. I think I answered this on Facebook…? I don’t know of any resorts in the Merrimack Valley But Lowell and Andover Mass are good candidates. What kind of resort? A luxury resort for lodging? Then I would hit my lodging affiliate page Maybe Booking.com and plug in the higher price. It depends on what you mean for resort…

  10. Sorry that I’m unable to figure out how to write a new post. Really a new topic. This page says “Foliage Reports for the 2015 season. This area will be filling in between August and September 2015”
    BUT…it’s 9/29 and I can’t find any reports, just predictions. Maybe the only way to see current reports is to subscribe??!!

  11. Jeff, I love your website, and the pictures are fantastic! I live in Eastern MA, north of Boston, and am trying to plan a weekend away, up north, could be ME, VT, or NH, and available weekends are Oct 16, Oct 30, and Nov 13. My objective is to enjoy beautiful Fall foliage, driving, hiking, biking, etc, and maybe enjoy a really nice resort setting as well. Any suggestions on locations and best weekends? Thanks so much

    • October 16th is Merrimack valley, the 30th is Salem (of course) and November is anywhere along the coast. I found late color in Salem at the visitor center. The Ginko trees turn a glorious yellow, especially in the sunshine.

  12. Hey Jeff great page !! We are planning to visit second week of October. We were thinking to visit southern vermont as the yankee fall foliage predicts it would be peak then. Do you have suggestions for which towns in south vermont would be best ? Do you think it will be peak fall colors in southern vermont in second week of october ? Thanks !!

  13. We r planning to visit Gorham NH from 2 to 4 October 2015
    Would like to hear about the fall conditions on above dates in white mountains
    Will u suggest any scenic drive apart from kancamagas highway
    Would like to drive some internal roads if colors r present that time

    • Route 110 and 16 was looking very nice on Monday but we have rain coming in today and Wed and cloudy conditions through the weekend… Explore 110 up into Milan state park (they have a fire tower for impressive views. Route 2 have quaint churches and Carters stone Tower and south off 2 is 116 which heads down to Pondicherry wildlife refuge. Not easy to find the parking lot to walk in but the walk in is about a mile and is flat and a lake with the mountains reflecting in it at the end.. dress for rain though.. http://www.nhdfl.org/events-tours-and-programs/visit-nh-biodiversity/pondicherry-images.aspx Check the link for directions.

  14. Hi Jeff: We are planning to make our first time trip to the area arriving in Boston on October 7 with time in Woodstock, Vermont on October 10-11. We are becoming concerned about the late foliage change. Can you let us know how you think it is likely to be north of Boston from October 7-12? We can take a day to drive north to Maine if that is helpful, and we intend to drive north from Woodstock on the 11th. Thanks for any help you can give us! My wife has wanted to take this trip for years and I am trying to help plan the best trip possible- thanks!


  15. Jeff, great help for those who don’t live here. I’ve been following your posts for a while. Fell in love with your Beaver pond,NH photos. I will be in NH from Oct 7 to 9. Would it be colourful for reflection photos. Any other locations around that would be peak at that time?

  16. Jeff, I’m heading up hiking this weekend and was shooting for north country, NH, north of Jefferson NH. I know I’m a bit early but was curious to know of any reports about the colors up there? I’m also heading out for a backpacking trip in the Wildcat Range Oct 2-4, which I believe will be peak season so I’m looking to it.

  17. I am on your foliage FB page. I saw that post right after I asked the above question. Do you have any specific places to see in lower part of VT? I have printed out a list of covered bridges. Thanks.

    • Route 9 has some lovely viewing overlooks where you can see into Massachusetts.
      On Route 7 is Machester VT, lovely college town and picturesque. Nearby is Hildene, home of Todd Lincoln and some wonderful views can be seen from the grounds.
      From Londonderry hit route 30 and pass through peru VT small rural toen/village with lots of farms. You can try some of the seasonal forestry roads that cross the green mountains. Not a lot of traffic on these dirt roads but there are some wonderful views of ponds and even a few waterfalls to be found. NF10 comes to mind and Google Mad Toms Notch. You’ll have to turn around when you hit the Appalachian trail 🙂 but I went up that road in my 4 dr sedan… so it was in pretty good shape when I was there.

  18. Hi Jeff,
    I read your foliage FB page, it is great. We will be in Lincoln (NH I-93) from 10/4 – 10/10. Do you think it is worth it to drive to Smuggler? hoping to see the autumn tunnel. If so, is there only 1 way up from Stowe on 108? Thanks

    • One way in and one way out… walking the trails along it might be good but one very narrow road and hard to photograph since you can’t stop until near the top where there is a parking lot for hikers…

  19. I have a reservation near Stowe for the 30th-2nd and the 7th-9th, but I have to cancel one. I’m not planning on going too much further south than that. Any advice you can give on which to cancel would be fantastic!

    • I think I answered this somewhere else.. OR I answered it in my head… 🙂
      I would go for the later but I think the 2-4 will be good but the 7-9 will be a little better. I think both are safe bets.

  20. I am. I actually saw that right after I asked you the question. Do you have any recommendations for the lower/middle part of Vermont (while we are in Londonderry) – I’ve printed out all of the covered bridges, but if you have any specific places to visit I would love to hear them.

  21. We will be in Vermont starting Oct. 2. We have 2 nights already reserved in Londonderry (the 2nd and 3rd), along with Stowe the 4th and 5th. The way things are shaping up looks like we will be a little early for any peak color. Do you have suggestions in these areas of places to visit since we can not cancel the rooms.

  22. Hi Jeff,
    We are planning to visit Ludlow VT on 10/3. Need an advice. Do you think its worth to postpone this visit to 10/10? as various forecast maps shows 10/10 as near peak in south VT.
    Thank you,

    • I would definitely move it to the Columbus Day Weekend. Even in a year without the season starting late I would not have gone with the 3rd (Stowe yes but Ludlow?)
      Wait did I tell you that the 3rd was good for Ludlow? I hope not… not even in a early year would there be much color except up in the ski area above… in fact I’m thinking that may still be true a little but less than the 3rd. But! reservations are the interesting part… most people have the Columbus day weekend booked already… I have three sites on my Thrifty lodging page that may help you narrow it down (Booking.com, B&B.com and Combined hotels.com) One of them should be able to help.

  23. Hi Jeff,

    Planning to visit Stowe area for fall colors this year. I am confused between Oct 3rd and Oct 10th weekend. As September has been warmer this year, which weekend do you think is a better pick for route 100?


    • Unless things pick up rapidly and it could if we get straight through cool days and night and no clouds but I would be a little later than the 3rd for absolute peak (which is mythical as I’ve said many times). If you get it anywhere from 50% to 75% in color you and I would be very happy. This is where I say timing it and hooking everything on arriving at the moment rarely works…
      Hmmm… If you have reservations already and before you cancel them see if it is even possible to find accommodations near to where you want to be for the Columbus Day weekend… I wouldn’t think you’ll have much luck… But if you can secure the new dates then slide it back. Worse case will mean that the colors speed up and have moved south of Stowe… With the current data I don’t think that will be the case…

  24. Thanks! When I booked the trip I did some quick research and saw that generally the last week of Sept. or first week of Oct. was good for foliage viewing in VT. We had a conflict the first week in Oct., but now I wish I had moved things around since it’s been a warm Sept. I am hopeful Mother Nature will be nice to us and we can see some color even if we have to drive a few hours to see it. Either way though, we will just appreciate the cooler weather and any leaf changes. We are from FL, so fall is non-existent here.

  25. We will be traveling to woodstock, VT the Sept. 24-27th. Do you have any suggestions on where we might be able to see some color?

    • Head to Peacham or Danville. The colors haven’t fully started yet but this week the temps across New England are dropping down where they should have been all of Sept. I’m hoping that they will start turning fast… but only Mother Nature knows how fast they will turn… Woodstock normally isn’t real colorful until after the 8th of October so north, head north… 🙂

  26. Thank you – so Wolfboro as a base and then choose direction based on the colors. Which may or may not include Woodstock – great. Thanks.

  27. Great website – I have gone to it often while trying to plan a trip with my parents. But now there are too many choices! 🙂

    We are heading up mid-October to Boston. I was thinking driving Boston to Woodstock, VT and staying there two nights – basically driving around day trips from there. I would like to see the lake district in NH but wondering if (right after Columbus Day) if driving to Woodstock one day, driving from Woodstock to Meredith (and back) next day and then back towards Boston on day three is just too much driving. Other alternative is we have a place to stay in Wolfeboro – so Boston to there and use that as a “home base”. So Boston to there one day then either boat ride or drive around the lake – maybe up to North Conway area if we want to drive for a while – back to Wolfeboro for the night then back towards Boston.

    Trip will be with parents who will enjoy the rides – slower pace than hikes and long walks. Want lots of good photos along the way. Thanks in advance for any help you can provide!

    • I like the second option and use Wolfboro as the base. Woodstock is not that far from there and the drive along route 11 through Laconia across to Franklin. From there you can follow it all the way to Woodstock or jump on 10 and take that to Woodstock. Either way you’ll be on the road 1.5 to 2 hours getting there (longer if rubber necking is involved and most likely will be. What is good about this is IF the colors speed up you can head south more and stay in the colors… If it stays a few days behind, then you can stay more northerly…

  28. Good morning! We are taking a road trip leaving Indiana September 30th. Spending two days in Holmes County, OH, then driving through PA, NY, & CT, arriving in Medford, MA for a church meeting October 3rd. Plan to leave MA Monday, October 5th and stay at the Yellow Farmhouse Inn in Waitsfield, VT for 5 nights doing various back road day trips from there. Any suggestions you may have are most welcome!

    Kevin in Indiana

    • Possibly both, 🙂 Sorry but it’s still summer like up till this weekend and next week the north country is cooling off highs of 70 next week so I’m betting that will get things moving. But its how much it gets moving is the key. I would say the WMs are a good plan but be ready to drive as far as Stark NH or the NEK to find really good color…

    • I think the last week in Sept through the 1st week of October will see descending temps (finally) and while the color may not be perfect, I think it will be somewhat normal. The areas like the Kancamagus and the NEK, northern NY (yes, I said New York) and northern Maine should be where it’s coloring up. But you may have to drive more in search of solid fall colors. The drought will bring the colors down faster leaving bare patches or bare trees.

  29. Hey Jeff, are you still blogging about Fall Foilage? I don’t see recent updates. I hope that you are indeed doing so, as I enjoyed reading and your photos are beautiful!

  30. ….breathtaking…you inspire me to work harder to be a better photographer.