Fall Color Report Update - September 29th
Sandy Richardson at Porcupine Mountains State Park reports full color in many parts of the park. This past weekend and perhaps next weekend the park is also offering chairlift rides up to the top of the ski hill. I expect good color to persist til at least the coming weekend
The drive between Grand Marais and Munising on H58 through Pictured Rocks National Park should be showing good color this this coming week and into October. Theresa at Tahquamenon Falls State Park expects full color breaking out some time during the next week. If leaves hold may see color into second week.
Close to the Wisconsin border in the western UP and near Ironwood and Black River Harbor color is now at peak and could hold good color for a week or more.
We are still waiting for a report from Houghton and the Keweenaw but based on past records they should be showing some good color this week and this weekend. Over closer to the Soo in the far Eastern Upper Peninsula color is starting on the US side and showing nicely in Ontario.
Hurley is between 80 and 100% and Ashland is between 50 and 70%. Copper Falls State Park is excellent right now, near peak, but I expect good color for at least another week. US Highway 2 between Ashland and Superior is showing good color in places and is at about 60%, perhaps a little more in the Brule River State Forest. So color this coming week and weekend should be good in the northern counties of Iron and Ashland. Since good color is showing all across Northern Wisconsin, if you are driving up from central or southern Wisconsin you'll have some nice color on the drive up as well. See our Lake Superior Wisconsin Fall Color Map and our Wisconsin Fall Color Tours page for recommended scenic fall color tour drives.
The drives around Bayfield and Highway 13 going west towards Superior, Wisconsin won't see peak color for at least a week but if you are going to Apple Fest next weekend a drive through the Bayfield Orchards area should be showing some splashes of bright color.
Grand Portage Park on the Minnesota/Ontario Border is near 100% peak and the waterfalls should be an impressive addition to your visit. Kjersti at Cook County Visitors Bureau reports things looking brilliant right now and expects peak in the coming week, but also she expects the color seaon to extend for an additional week or two in October. From Split Rock State Park to Cascade River State Park color change is between 75 and 100%. The best and earliest fall color is often away from the lake. Stop in the visitor centers at Tettegouche and Temperance River State Parks for color tour maps. This coming week and weekend should be excellent for riding tthe Lutsen Mountain Gondola to the top of Moose Mountain.
Duluth to Two Harbors remains a week or two from excellent color. Areas along the North Shore with lots of Aspen and Birch generally don't show good color change until into October.
Because most of the hardwoods in the boreal forests of Ontario are Aspen and some birch you don't see much color change around Thunder Bay and north until October. On the eastern end between Sault Sainte Marie and Wawa, where the forest has more variety, expect some good color around the end of September and first week or two of October.
Rainfall in September along the south shore of Lake Superior has been ample which I think means that the leaves will hang on the trees a while. It also means the areas with attractive waterfalls - like Copper Falls State Park, Black River Scenic Byway. Presque Isle River (Porcupine Mountains), and Tahquamenon Falls - will be especially attractive with roaring waterfalls and decent fall color and foliage.(See links to these areas near the top of this page).