Great Smoky Mountains Fantastic Fall Foliage Forecasted

Fantastic Smoky Mountain Fall Foliage Forecast!

Fantastic Smoky Mountain Fall Foliage Forecast!

Great Smoky Mountains Fantastic Fall Foliage Forecasted. Leaf peeping is always a Smoky Mountain special event! A fantastic display of fall foliage is predicted for The Great Smoky Mountains and surrounding areas.

Experts expect Mother Nature to dance a fiery flamenco across the Smokies, flinging her cloak of many colors and blazing a trail through Tennessee and North Carolina. All this is due, in part, to the unusually warm and wet conditions experienced in the mountains from spring through mid-summer and closer to normal rainfall in late July, according to a quote by Beverly Collis, Western Carolina University’s autumnal analyzer and fall color calculator. Collins, a professor of biology at WCU, utilizes her knowledge of forest ecology with weather trends to calculate the potential for a color-filled leaf-peeping season in the Western portion of North Carolina where color can appear, in some species, such as sumac and sourwood, in early September. According to Collins the long-term forecast that extends through October calls for average precipitation and warmer –than normal temperatures, “and, if the forecast holds, we should have our typical bright colors this year,” Collins was quoted as saying.  However, color change is linked to cooler nights which result in less chlorophyll (green color) production in leaves, and Collins noted that if the forecast holds and those cooler nights are delayed, peak color might hold off until the last weekend of October in regions that are about 2,000 feet in elevations. And, Collins warned that big storms or a hurricane, which might send strong winds and heavy rains inland, could strip the leaves off the trees ahead of schedule.

Clingmans Dome is the perfect spot to get a bird eye view of all the fall color!

Clingmans Dome is the perfect spot to get a bird eye view of all the fall color!

Autumn color travels down the mountain sides from high elevation to low in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park, but, there are so many variables that the exact dates of “peak” season are impossible to predict. And elevation is a major factor that determines when fall colors change, according to the National Park Service’s website which explained that “In higher elevations, where the climate is similar to New England’s, color displays may start in mid-September when yellow birch, American beech, mountain maple, hobblebush, and pin cherry begin to change. Fall colors develop above 4,000 feet from early to mid-October.”

According to the Park Service, the fall color display usually reaches peak at mid and lower elevations between mid-October and early November with a spectacular display of kaleidoscopic-colored trees such as sugar maple, scarlet oak, sweet gum, red maple, and the hickories. The Park Service suggests leaf-peepers check out the drive along the Clingmans Dome Road, the Blue Ridge Parkway, or the Foothills Parkway.

Fall is a busy time in the Smokies, so plan your visit, lace up those boots, and make those reservations early.

The National Park Service’s Fall Color Facts

Why are fall colors so remarkable in the Smokies? The park is home to an amazing diversity of more than 100 species of native trees and the vast majority of these are deciduous.

How do colors change? As summer ends, the green pigments in leaves deteriorate, giving other colors a chance to shine. Carotenoids, the pigment that makes carrots orange and leaves yellow are exposed as the green fades. Reds and purples come from anthocyanins, a pigment that is formed when sugars in leaves break down in bright autumn sunlight.

More Hey Smokies Features:

Take a Scenic Drive on Moonshiner 28 near the Great Smoky Mountains!
Take a Scenic Drive on Moonshiner 28 near the Great Smoky Mountains!...
Take a Scenic Drive on Moonshiner 28 near the Great Smoky Mountains! Perhaps no image is more stereotypical of the rural South than that of the [Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Winter Experience
Smoky Mountain Winter Experience...
Smoky Mountain Winter Experience event is scheduled for January 27 -29, 2020 at the Ramsey Hotel in Pigeon Forge. This inaugural event will offe[Read More >>]
5 Awesome Winter Things To Do In The Smoky Mountains
5 Awesome Winter Things To Do In The Smoky Mountains...
5 Awesome Winter Things To Do In The Smoky Mountains! We love winter in the Smoky Mountains. The crowds thin out and the traffic slows down. Cle[Read More >>]
Remember When, Lost Smoky Mountain Attractions - Hunter Hills Theater
Remember When, Lost Smoky Mountain Attractions - Hunter Hills Theater...
Remember When, Lost Smoky Mountain Attractions - Hunter Hills Theater. Gatlinburg is widely known as a national vacation destination offering[Read More >>]
New Year Beans And Greens Recipe
New Year Beans And Greens Recipe...
New Year Beans And Greens Recipe. What is behind the Southern tradition of eating black-eyed peas and collard greens on New Years day? Some folk[Read More >>]
New Years Eve Bootlegger's Ball
New Years Eve Bootlegger's Ball...
New Years Eve Bootlegger's Ball will ring in 2020 Tuesday, December 31, 2019. This roaring good time will be held at Junction 35 Spirits in Pige[Read More >>]
German Christmas Lebkuchen Recipe
German Christmas Lebkuchen Recipe...
German Christmas Lebkuchen recipe is one of the most beloved and popular Christmas treats in Deutschland. The recipe dates back to the 14th cent[Read More >>]
Great Smoky Mountains Oconaluftee Holiday Homecoming
Great Smoky Mountains Oconaluftee Holiday Homecoming...
Great Smoky Mountains Oconaluftee Holiday Homecoming. The annual holiday homecoming at the Oconaluftee Visitors Center is scheduled for Saturday[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Fraser Fir Trees, America's Favorite Christmas Tree
Smoky Mountain Fraser Fir Trees, America's Favorite Christmas Tree...
Smoky Mountain Fraser Fir Trees, America's Favorite Christmas Tree.  The Fraser fir, which can reach some 55-feet tall in the wild, is the only [Read More >>]
Great Smoky Mountain Annual Festival Of Christmas Past
Great Smoky Mountain Annual Festival Of Christmas Past...
Great Smoky Mountain Annual Festival Of Christmas Past Saturday, December 14, 2019. The event will be held at Sugarlands Visitor Center beginnin[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Long Cold Full Moon
Smoky Mountain Long Cold Full Moon...
Smoky Mountain Long Cold Full Moon is on the rise! The final full moon for 2019 and the decade will reach its apex at 12:12 a.m. on December 12t[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Winterfest
Smoky Mountain Winterfest...
Smoky Mountain Winterfest begins November 22, 2019 and runs through February 15, 2020. This celebration of light gives our mountain communities [Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Southern Mac And Cheese Recipe
Smoky Mountain Southern Mac And Cheese Recipe...
Smoky Mountain Southern Mac And Cheese Recipe is the perfect side dish for any meal and sometimes it is a great meal all by itself. All you [Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Synchronous Firefly Event 2020
Smoky Mountain Synchronous Firefly Event 2020...
Smoky Mountain Synchronous Firefly Event 2020. It’s never to early to start making plans to see the Synchronous Fireflies (and the Blue Ghost Fi[Read More >>]
Biltmore Downton Abbey Exhibition Special Event
Biltmore Downton Abbey Exhibition Special Event...
  Biltmore Downton Abbey Exhibition Special Event will be featured through April 7, 2020. Costumes, sets and more are part of the new Down[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Elk Rut
Smoky Mountain Elk Rut...
Smoky Mountain Elk Rut is heating up in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.The fall mating season begins each year around mid-September and is [Read More >>]
Dollywood Light The Way 5K
Dollywood Light The Way 5K...
Dollywood Light The Way 5K is scheduled for Friday November 15, 2019 at Dollywood. This annual event is celebrating its seventh year running. Th[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Full Beaver Moon
Smoky Mountain Full Beaver Moon...
Smoky Mountain Full Beaver Moon is set to rise November 12, 2019. There is no place more special to view the rise of a full moon than Great Smok[Read More >>]
Don't Feed The Bears Event
Don't Feed The Bears Event...
Don't Feed The Bears Event benefitting Appalachian Bear Rescue will be Saturday, November 16, 2019. The event will be held at the Enchanted Vall[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Stargazing Event
Smoky Mountain Stargazing Event...
Great Smoky Mountains Stargazing Event will be held at the Highlands Science Learning Center Friday, November 15, 2019 in North Carolina. The Hi[Read More >>]