We all know how beautiful the fall foliage can be! This brief moment when the green summer foliage turns into a vivid autumn palette of reds, yellows, and oranges, can be truly amazing. There are only a handful of places in the United States where you can enjoy a beautiful fall foliage, and Southern Oregon is one of them.
So, if you aren’t lucky enough to live in a place where Nature puts up one last performance before falling into a winter sleep, you’ll have to travel far and wide to catch a glimpse of this beautiful moment. But it’s wort it!
When Is the Best Time for Fall Foliage in Southern Oregon?
We’ve been traveling to Southern Oregon in fall for many years, but haven’t always seen beautiful fall colors. This year however we very lucky to enjoy some of the most incredible fall foliage in Southern Oregon.
Technically, the leaves start turning yellow beginning mid September, but the peak season is mid to the end of October. Unfortunately, no two autumns are alike. Also, fall colors are not very predictable either, especially in the long term. That makes planning a successful leaf peeping trip quite difficult most of the time.
How Do Fall Colors Happen?
Fall colors appear every year, but a spectacular season is not always guaranteed. So what’s Mother Nature’s recipe for a breathtaking color performance?
Apparently there are quite a few factors involved. Weather for instance determines the color intensity, while the length of night regulates the timing of the color change. A dry year can cause leaves to brighten early, while a wet year can cause them to just turn brown, without going through the entire color palette.
When I lived in Romania, I very seldom saw the brilliant colors that are so common to the fall foliages in New England or Oregon, for instance. That’s because in Romania autumns are short and wet most of the times.
Best Places to See Fall Foliage in Southern Oregon
Seeing amazing fall foliage in Southern Oregon is not unusual, but this area is not particularly famous for leaf peeping. As it seems, the best places for fall colors start a little further north, in Eugene.
Nonetheless, there are many beautiful areas around the Rogue River, Jacksonville and Ashland, where you can enjoy the fall colors in Southern Oregon. The best of all these places is most likely Lithia Park in Ashland. The park extends on 93 acres of land and encompasses a varied and spectacular landscape.
Although the colors here on the west coast can be pretty, I don’t think they compare to what I saw when I traveled to Connecticut a few years ago – the range of colors was simply astonishing.
The Loop Trail Road in Roxy Ann is another beautiful place to enjoy fall foliage in Southern Oregon. The trail also offers views of Medford and Mt. McLoughlin in the distance. If you decide to hike to the top, you’ll get a gorgeous view of Ashland to Gold Hill with amazing golds, reds and oranges that bring this little mountain to life.
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