Oregon Fall Foliage Update 10/30/2014

Currin Bridge by Instagrammer erica2

Currin Bridge by Instagrammer erica2

Eugene, Cascades & Coast
Welcome to Eugene, Cascades & Coast, where pink and yellow trees dot the landscape and every neighborhood street is alive with the flair of fall color. This weekend, may we suggest some urban hiking? You won’t have to travel too far beyond your own backyard to immerse yourself in a wide spectrum of color, fleeting as it may be. Hike up Lincoln Street, beginning from downtown Eugene, and take it to the top. This pretty little stretch will tie a few miles under your belt, pass you through a wooded dog park, and land you in a graveyard, the Mount Cavalry Cemetery. Watch out for ghosts and goblins. Boo! The Fifth Street Public “Haunted” Market is all tricked out in pumpkins and cobwebs and ready for trick-or-treaters. Admission to the family-friendly event is three cans of food to be donated to Food For Lane County or $3.
Head to the Eugene, Cascades & Coast website for more Halloween festivals.

Eugene by Instagram naoyagram

Eugene by Instagram naoyagram

Oregon Coast
When the rains come, water levels rise. Check out Alder Glen Falls, an ever-changing waterfall in the town of Tillamook that flows with more gusto once the wetter seasons set in. Situated in a moss-draped setting of alder and maple trees along the banks of the Nestucca River, this spot is sure to please fall foliage hunters. Further south, things are getting spooky in North Bend. Experience CarnEVIL, a haunted house presented by the players of the Little Theater on the Beach. Ambiance will be complete with costumes, lighting effects, wicked music, and mazes that would fool a rat. The price is $5 for adults and $3 for those under 13, though the staff suggests that no very young children attend as the performances are scarily realistic!

Linfield College by doublemdesignandphotography

Linfield College by doublemdesignandphotography

Willamette Valley
The Willamette Valley has reached its peak. Recent storms have made for dark grey skies, and vibrancy is dying off. Leaves are falling and snow is in the forecast for higher elevations, so get out and enjoy the last of the fall colors while you still can! Take a scenic drive to Silverton, and visit the Oregon Garden, open to the public 365 days a year and always offering something special to see. Throughout October, Wave Broadband will be hosting Scarecrows in the Garden, a fun, month-long display of locally made scarecrows. Vote for you favorite, and you might win an overnight stay at the Oregon Garden Resort.

Portland by Instagrammer bryangeli

Portland by Instagrammer bryangeli

Greater Portland
Greater Portland is looking good. The Camassia Natural Area, located 30 minutes outside of Portland in West Linn, is wonderful for walking about and viewing some excellent fall foliage. Volunteers with the Nature Conservancy have restored more than 26 acres of oak woodlands and meadows for public access. This is a great spot for birders. Ospreys nest onsite, and chickadees, warblers, and vireos can be found on the forest’s edge. To put yourself in a Halloween state of mind, make this your weekend to visit Pittock Mansion. Not only does this mansion overlook the city, it is also rumored to be haunted.

Oregon Garden

Oregon Garden

Mt. Hood/ The Gorge
Rain should hold off this weekend in the Mt. Hood and Gorge areas, so take a walk in Tucker County Park. This park, located on the Hood River, is a go-to for locals, with its lush vegetation and easy access to the Columbia Gorge. Tucker Park is a designated viewing area on the Oregon Cascades Birding Trail and is sure to offer an all-inclusive fall foliage experience. Fish for trout in the river, explore the natural paths, and wind your way through this wonderful forest.

Central Oregon
The fall colors in Bend and around Central Oregon are somewhere between past peak and done for the season. A few trees have fully shed their leaves, but most are still showing their fall glory. A drive down Highway 20, near Suttle Lake, reveals orange vine maples, a white to yellow carpet of ferns, and golden tamaracks. Snow is coming, and soon, the Old McKenzie Highway (Hwy 242) will close for the season. This might be the last weekend to visit the Dee Wright Observatory and its 65-square mile lava flow, so seize this route before it becomes unavailable.

Eastern Oregon
Fall color in Baker County is at its peak. Depending on winds from seasonal storms, color is expected to remain vibrant for at least another week. The best colors right now are in the valleys, particularly in the towns Baker City, Haines, and Halfway. Higher in the mountains, the once glorious aspens are starting to bare their branches. Tamaracks, however, are still looking great.

Southern Oregon
A chill has spread across the land of Southern Oregon, rain and winds are here to stay. In areas where snow has not yet set in, leaf hunters may still be able to catch a glimpse of fall color. Head to the town of Gold Hill via 1-5 South, and visit the Oregon Vortex. Located beyond the bend of the Rogue River, and situated on the scenic left fork of Sardine Creek Road, this strange house was voted one of Oregon’s 11 Scariest Haunted Places. The light mist that Mother Nature is sure to provide this weekend will add to the structure’s unsettling ambiance, so grab a camera and plan your course. Happy hunting!

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Weekly Update 10/28/2010

Hills Creek Reservoir, Oakridge, OregonHills Creek Reservoir in Oakridge, Oregon

With many regions reporting peak color changes, this is a wonderful week for exploring Oregon’s gorgeous fall foliage.  Lower elevations are reporting vibrant peak colors, while much of the higher elevations around the state saw the first snowfall of the season. This a wonderful week to see the beautiful contrast of bright fall color and fresh white snow; just be sure to check road conditions before you drive to the higher elevations. With Halloween weekend quickly approaching, there’s also plenty of harvest celebrations to enjoy while you marvel at the peaking street trees in many of the Oregon regions.

Eugene, Cascades & Coast
Fall color is at or near peak in Eugene and at the central Oregon coast and just starting to fade in the Cascades. The red osier dogwoods of Eugene and Springfield are near peak, while the big leaf maples are peaking and the ash trees are just starting to fade. Hike along “Theodore’s Trail” at Mount Pisgah; you’ll get a stunning view of the farmland along Seavey Loop and the brilliant colors of the trees along the Coast Fork of the Willamette River. For Halloween fun, visit the largest collection of jack-o-lanterns in the Northwest at the Fifth Street Public Market. In the Florence area, leaf watchers expect to see the brown crunchy leaves falling to the ground very soon. The first snow has fallen along the McKenzie River, offering a striking contrast of white snow mixed with bright red leaves. Bundle up and visit Sahalie and Koosah Falls this weekend for beautiful views.

Coast
The leaves are at peak along most of the coast. This past week brought plenty of wind and buckets of rain to the northern Oregon coast, so maple leaves with the bright yellow and red tinge of fall colors are barely hanging onto the stems. The leaves are brought down during rain showers, leaving a trail of color scattered on the streets. Travel west along Highway 26 from Portland to the Oregon coast for a nice scenic drive. Coos Bay is at peak this week, with rich red and gold maples throughout town. Drive the Pacific Coast Scenic Byway from Reedsport to Coos Bay for the best views.

Willamette Valley Fruit Farm
Have some family fun this weekend at the Willamette Valley Fruit Company in Salem, offering hayrides, a barrel train, a corn cannon, and of course, plenty of pumpkins.

Willamette Valley
The leaves are at or just past peak in the Willamette Valley. Colors in Salem are at peak or just starting to fade, and the Cascades and Coastal Range are past peak and fading. The urban walks in the towns of Oregon Wine Country are the best bet for viewing fall color this week. Wander along the Willamette River at Salem Riverfront Park or the Eugene and Springfield Riverbank Trail. Visit the Mushroom Festival at Mount Pisgah Arboretum to see the big leaf maples popping with a glorious yellow-orange all over the mountain.

Greater Portland
The leaves are at peak color change in the greater Portland area. Right now, it is impossible to miss the fall color, no matter where you are. Stroll the Park Blocks downtown, NW 23rd Avenue in Nob Hill or the streets in the Hawthorne area to see some of Portland’s charming neighborhoods brilliant with seasonal color. This weekend, visit the Portland Farmers Market on the Park Blocks downtown, or head out to the pumpkin patches in Sandy, Oregon.

Mt. Hood/ Columbia River Gorge
Lower elevations on Mt Hood are at peak and displaying a lot of brilliant reds, yellows and golds. With snow in the higher elevations of Mt Hood, now’s the time to snap a photo of the beautiful contrast of fall color and winter white. Multnomah Falls is peaking, and leaf watchers expect 1-2 more weeks of brilliant colors. Hike the Horsetail Falls Loop in the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area to get breathtaking views of the Oneonta Gorge and Canyon.

Southern Oregon
The leaves are at or approaching peak in most of Southern Oregon. Fall color is fading at Crater Lake and being replaced with a fresh batch of snow. Ashland reports reds and yellows with a backdrop of green. Take in the rich fall color while hiking a portion of the Pacific Crest Trail, or take the kids to the Halloween Costume Parade. Grants Pass and Klamath Falls are just reaching peak and displaying a nice range of red, orange and yellow. Drive down towards Indian Mary Park, or take your family to visit the corn maze at Fort Vannoy Farms for Halloween.

Central Oregon
The leaves are at peak and just beginning to fade in Central Oregon. Our leaf-peeping friends in Bend recommend warming up with a bowl of chili at the McMenamins Old St. Francis Pub, where you can see the full range of red, orange and yellow against some remaining green. Continue along the Bend Ale Trail, where your journey of delicious brews will lead you to a commemorative Bend pint glass.

Eastern Oregon
Most of Eastern Oregon is approaching peak color change. The Steens Mountains are past peak, and most of the leaves have faded and fallen. Hike near Big Indian Gorge to get the last views of fall colors. The Wallowa Whitman National Forest is seeing a wide range of reds and yellows, and Hells Canyon is packed with a rainbow of fall foliage.