Foliage is reaching peak color this week in sections of the Northeast Kingdom and Lamoille County, and most areas of the state will be displaying multiple stages of colorful foliage over the next several days. State foresters say most sections of Essex, Orleans, Caledonia and Lamoille counties in northeastern and north central Vermont are showing vibrant fall colors that are near or at peak.
“At this point we are now seeing – and will see this weekend – peak colors in many areas of the Northeast Kingdom and Lamoille County,” said Orleans and Lamoille County Forester Raymond Toolan. “Good color will be found on pretty much any road from Stowe to Quebec.”
With cooler temperatures in the forecast, the foliage progression will continue to accelerate around Vermont over the next several days. Higher elevations across the state offer excellent opportunities for foliage viewing, and the hillsides are showing brilliant shades of red, orange and yellow.
Best Bets: In northern Vermont, suggested routes include Route 100 from Stowe to Newport, Route 58 from Lowell to Orleans, Route 111 around Seymour Lake in Morgan, Route 5A from West Burke to Lake Willoughby in Westmore, Route 108 from Stowe to Cambridge, Route 14 from Greensboro to Newport, and Route 114 from East Burke to Island Pond.
Take Route 12 from Montpelier to Morrisville and see peak color along the eastern side of Elmore Mountain. Look for shades of gold, orange and red along Interstate 89 between Richmond and Randolph, Route 302 between Barre and Groton, Route 100 from Warren to Waterbury Center, Route 14 between Sharon and Williamstown, Route 125 from Hancock to Middlebury and Route 12A from Roxbury to Northfield.
Farther south, many higher elevations also have an abundance of bright red foliage, particularly on Route 100 from Hancock to Killington, and Route 4 over Sherburne Pass between Killington and Rutland. Meanwhile, foliage is nearing peak along Route 100 near Ludlow and Route 103 between Mount Holly and Cuttingsville. Foliage is also progressing past mid-stage color on the eastern slopes of the higher elevations of Route 73 between Rochester and Brandon. Also, try Route 12 from Woodstock to Bethel and Route 107 from Stockbridge to Royalton.
Strong early color is evident along Route 4 from Rutland to Fair Haven, and Route 22A from Fair Haven to Shoreham. A good bet for bright mid-stage yellows and oranges is Route 140 from East Wallingford to Middletown Springs.
Early and mid-stage color can been seen along the hillsides on Interstate 91 between White River Junction and Brattleboro. Route 5 along the Connecticut River from Norwich to Fairlee is showing a variety of color, as is Route 14 along the White River between Hartford and East Randolph, and Route 100 from Wilmington to Weston.
Foliage on the mountain ridges and higher elevation pockets along the spine of the Green Mountains from Middlebury Gap to Danby are also progressing past mid-stage color with plenty of vibrant yellows, oranges and golds. Best bets include Route 7 from Manchester to Rutland and Route 30 from Manchester to Cornwall. Also, the hillsides and valleys in Bennington County are showing beautiful mid-stage foliage, especially at the higher elevations. There are several places to enjoy good foliage viewing, including Routes 11 & 30, Route 9, and 7A.
The Vermont Hospitality Council advises making advance reservations because the most popular lodgings may fill early on busy weekends. Some innkeepers may require a minimum two-night stay, especially on busy weekends. Vermont tourism officials encourage visitors to take advantage of midweek specials during the foliage season as part of the statewide “Midweek Peek” promotion. Deals range from discounted lodging to free Vermont products. For details, visit www.VermontVacation.com/midweek.
Also available on the website are several tools for planning a Vermont Fall Foliage tour:
Fall Foliage Forecaster
Lodging Availability Forecaster
20 Scenic Drives
Fall Travel Tips
For more information, visit www.VermontVacation.com/fall
Source: Vermont Tourism Dept. 9.29.2009