Weekly Update 10/14/2010

Skinner Butte Eugene SkylineRed, orange and yellow trees dot the Eugene skyline. This viewpoint from Skinner Butte is always a great photo opportunity for leaf peepers.

Eugene, Cascades & Coast
The leaves are at or near peak  in the upper Cascades, approaching peak in the Willamette Valley and at the coast at Florence. The vine maple in the higher elevations are fiery red, and yellow trees are lining the Siuslaw River on Highway 126 to Florence. In the valley, the youngest maple trees are reaching peak, but the large big-leaf maples have only small highlights of gold in their green canopies. Wander the trails early in the morning at Mount Pisgah Arboretum to see the fog turn golden with ash trees, and listen to the wonderful sound of crunching oak leaves underfoot. While you’re there, be sure to check the Katsura tree we reported on last week – it’s now at its peak color for the season.

Greenwaters ParkTake your family to Greenwaters Park in Oakridge to play in bright piles of yellow, orange and brown leaves.

For a scenic drive, head through the falling yellow leaves along Highway 58. Take your family to Greenwaters Park in Oakridge to play in bright piles of yellow, orange and brown leaves. In Eugene, visit the Ridgeline Trail and the Cascades Raptor Center to wander through trails lined with burnt orange and bright yellow. Cycle along the South Bank portion of the Ruth Bascom Riverbank Path System, where you’ll ride through sections of glorious fall yellow and gold trees.

The colors are at or near peak along the coast and in the coast range. Leaf watchers predict peak color change in the next two weeks. Astoria is filled with red and gold, with brilliant colored leaves floating on the quiet waters of Coffenbury Lake. October has brought plenty of sunshine to the northern Oregon coast, so maple leaves with tinges of fall colors are barely hanging onto the stems. Drive along Highway 26 from Portland to see beautiful red maples and fallen yellow leaves lining the road. Coos Bay is gorgeous this week, with reds and yellows popping along the roadsides. Go up the Coos River to Mingus Park for beautiful views.

Willamette Valley
The leaves are approaching peak color change in the Willamette Valley. Trees in the higher elevations of the Cascades and Coastal Range are at or very close to peak, while many of the maples lower in the valley are just beginning to change.  Drive Highway 22 for gorgeous fall views, and bring your family to Salem for the weekend’s Harvest Festival and Pumpkin Merriment. Corvallis has a nice display of vivid reds and golds scattered amongst a backdrop of green. The Jackson-Frazier Wetlands are a lovely way to enjoy a nice walk and bright colors this week.

Fall color in PortlandTake your pup to Mary S. Young State Park in Portland this weekend. A few of the smaller trees have turned bright red, while most of the large leafy trees are still a robust green.

Greater Portland
The colors are near peak in the Portland area. Golden color is visible everywhere, and the city’s neighborhood are filling with falling leaves. Take a stroll through the Nob Hill area and see the changing color on heritage trees set amongst charming, historic storefronts. This weekend, take your bike to the paved portion of the Banks-Vernonia Trail. Begin in the town of Vernonia, where you can ride under the railroad trestles and past farmland to take in all of autumn’s colors.

Mt. Hood/ Columbia River Gorge
The leaves are at or approaching peak color change on Mt Hood above 2000 feet, and are approaching peak at lower elevations along Highway 26 and Highway 35. Leaf watchers predict colors around peak change for the next three weeks. Multnomah Falls reports some yellow and brown against a mostly evergreen backdrop. Drive Highway 26 to Timberline Lodge for great photo opportunities.

Southern Oregon
The leaves are just starting to turn in Southern Oregon. Some light reds and a bit of yellow show in the small leaf trees. Some reds, yellows and oranges have been spotted in the Grants Pass area, with the best display at Indian Mary Park. Color change has finally begun around Klamath Falls, where aspens and birches are turning along with a glorious display of rich burgundy. Drive along Highway 140 between Klamath Falls and Medford, or along Highways 152 and 140 for beautiful scenery this week.

Central Oregon
The color change is at or near peak in the higher elevations of central Oregon. Leaf watchers report strong colors for this time of the year. Bright reds and oranges line the trails at Clear Lake, a great start to hiking and viewing the fall foliage along the McKenzie River Trail (if you haven’t already, check out our previous post about this favorite fall hike).

Eastern Oregon
The color change is at peak in the higher elevations of eastern Oregon, and is just beginning to change in the lower elevations. In southeastern Oregon, Frenchglen and Malheur Wildlife Refuge report peak colors and leaves that are just beginning to drop. If you haven’t yet visited the Steens Mountains this year, this is the week to see the aspen at their peak of yellow. Drive the Steens Loop Tour Route and into the Diamond Valley for the best views.


3 thoughts on “Weekly Update 10/14/2010

  1. Pingback: Oregon Fall Color is Happening Now « Natural History Wanderings

  2. Hi there,

    Last weekend I was in Southern Oregon to see fall foliage colors. I have some very good images from Ashland and from Hwy 138. If you want to put those in this blog, please feel free to reply me back. I will be happy to see my photos on this blog 🙂


  3. Hi Vikas, thanks for the offer! I would love to feature one of your photos on the blog. I’ll be emailing you shortly.

    -Emily, Travel Lane County

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