Weekly Update 10/06/2011

Brisk temperatures beckon richer fall colors, though peak levels are still a couple weeks away through most of Oregon. From covered bridges and craft brews to films and festivals, there are plenty of activities, tastes and sights to savor around the state.

Some yellows line a mostly still green landscape along the McKenzie River

Some yellows line a mostly still-green landscape along the McKenzie River.

Eugene, Cascades and Coast
The fall color change is still in the beginning stages in the Eugene, Cascades & Coast region. Spots of color dot the Eugene skyline and line the McKenzie and Siuslaw Rivers. Scope out some early yellow and red at the 10th Annual Oregon Covered Bridge Festival in Cottage Grove, or tantalize both your taste buds and ears at Chowder, Blues & Brews in Florence. On your way to the coast, plan a stop in Veneta for the Wineries without Walls Tasting Event or head over to the Eugene Fresh Hop Beer Fest.

Coast
The fall color change is still in the beginning stages along the Oregon Coast. Go for a river drive along Highway 38 to capture a glimpse of the first reds and oranges and a few falling leaves. Music, food and fun are abundant at unique events throughout the region including Octoberfish and Zombiefest. Hop on Highway 6 for another scenic drive from Washington County to the Mysterious Mushrooms of Tillamook Forest.

View from the Oregon State Capitol in Salem

View from the Oregon State Capitol in Salem

Willamette Valley
The fall color change is still in the beginning stages in the Willamette Valley. Take a ride on the Canby Ferry to see the first signs of yellow lining the Willamette River. Oranges and yellows pepper portions of Salem, where visitors can celebrate the season and warm up with some free hot chocolate or cider at Family Harvest Days at the Oregon Garden.

Greater Portland
The fall color change is just beginning in the Greater Portland area. Though mostly green, hints of color can be spotted at the picturesque Portland Japanese Garden. Explore a variety of harvest-inspired family fun at Bauman’s Farm in Gervais or heighten your heart rate at Fright Town.

Mt. Hood/Columbia River Gorge
The fall color change has started and is nearing peak in some areas of Mt. Hood Territory and along the Columbia River Gorge. Maples are morphing to reds and yellows and should reach their peak in another week or two. Hikers and photographers alike will savor the sights of Mirror Lake, Lost Lake Road and Lolo Pass.

Wizard Falls Fish Hatchery at Camp Sherman. Image courtesy Sisters Chamber of Commerce

Wizard Falls Fish Hatchery at Camp Sherman. Image courtesy Sisters Area Chamber of Commerce

Central Oregon
While a few trees are near full peak, the fall color change is still in the beginning phases through most of Central Oregon. The High Desert color palette is slowly warming from summer’s multi-shades of green to fall’s gold and amber hues. Bask in the scenery with some fly-fishing along the Deschutes or Metolius Rivers or take the family to the Wizard Falls Fish Hatchery at Camp Sherman. Watch for the tamaracks changing while driving along mountain passes on your way to the First Friday Fall Art Hop or reel in an indie film at the Annual Bend Film Festival.

Ride the Eagle Cap Excursion Train to spot tamaracks along the Grande Ronde and Wallowa rivers. Image courtesy Charlie Mitchell.

Ride the Eagle Cap Excursion Train to spot tamaracks along the Grande Ronde and Wallowa rivers. Image courtesy Charlie Mitchell.

Eastern Oregon
The fall color change is still beginning in Eastern Oregon. In the northeastern corner of the state, some early gold has been spotted on willows, while aspen are turning yellow and gold at the higher elevations. Along the valley floor, behold the beautiful red and gold brush with distant views of the Eagle Cap and Elkorn wilderness areas. Book now for beautiful views aboard the Eagle Cap Excursion Train. For valley views, visit Ladd Marsh Wildlife Area to spot water and field fowl as well as big game heading to lower elevations.

Southern Oregon
The fall color change is just beginning in Southern Oregon. Though colors have yet to develop, autumn energy is in full bloom at the Canyonville Pumpkin and Music Celebration and the Annual Oktoberfest in Roseburg.

2 thoughts on “Weekly Update 10/06/2011

  1. We drove thorugh the gorge just 10 days ago and saw very little color so it must have happened very quickly?

  2. Interesting observation, Mary. Once colors start to change we go from just starting to approaching peak quickly. Often different areas within a region will develop color more quickly than others. One leaf watcher might see a trail or stream with great color, while another leaf watcher
    in the same region might see very little color change. We would love to see some recent photos from the Gorge for just this reason!
    -Samara P.

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