Upper Peninsula and Northwest Lower Peninsula
In the Upper Peninsula and much of the Northern Lower Peninsula, the color is past peak, and fading fast as the cold and rainy weather encourages leaf drop.
Traverse City has been at peak foliage for the past week, and although winds have stripped leaves from the highest branches on trees along hilltops and ridges, there is plenty of brilliant color on the hillsides and valleys, and it’s especially lovely walking in the woods, where the sunlight is filtered through clouds of gold and scarlet.
The forested hills south of Traverse City are dotted with dozens of small lakes, rolling meadows and sturdy farm towns–as well as the broad valley of the Boardman River. This drive takes you through a broad variety of landscapes.
According to observers, the best viewing will be found this weekend, with typical orange and red hues dominating the landscape. State parks are reporting good color and continue to be prime viewing destinations as the season’s show winds to a close.
Southwest and Southeast
Fall color in Southwest and Southeast Michigan is reaching its peak, with variations ranging between 90-95 percent.
The Lexington area is reporting excellent color at Lakeport State Park, the Lexington area local Parks as well as drives along M25. Beard’s Hills is probably one of the best kept secrets in this area as far as Fall Color Peeping.
As you get into the more densely wooded areas between South Haven and Saugatuck, the vibrant color surrounds you. If you decide to head north, you can stop at Crane Orchards in Fennville to find your way through their corn maze or stick around after dark on Friday or Saturday for their haunted maze! From Crane’s, it’s only a short drive to Fenn Valley Vineyards and Wine Cellar where they offer free wine tastings, as well as tours of the cellar and vineyards. Blue Star Highway (A2) between South Haven and Saugatuck is an absolutely gorgeous drive with old farm houses and various artist studios along the way.
This will be our final Pure Michigan fall color report for the 2012 season.