Fall in the White Mountains
The White Mountains is world-renowned for its stunning annual display of fall foliage. Beginning in mid-September, the mountain tops and scenic byways of the White Mountains become awash with brilliant reds, yellows, oranges, and even purple hues! This is due to the fact that we have a variety of trees in the White Mountains whose leave change including Sugar Maple, Red, and Striped Maple, White and Yellow Birch, American Beech, Tamarack, and Tamarack, just to name a few.
The leaves don’t all change at the same time, which offers abundant opportunities to take a scenic drive to the different regions in the White Mountains throughout the foliage season and witness the varying color changes. The northern most tip of the White Mountains (the Great North Woods) tends to see the greatest change in color first. Towns such as Pittsburg and Colebrook are great places to catch the first glimpse, and you might even see a moose or two while you are up there! Then the color starts to spread west, then east, then down into the Lakes Region before continuing south to the rest of the New England States.
Because the leaves change at different times depending on the region, this makes it difficult to predict when “peak” will hit. Peak refers to that time in the foliage season when the leaves are at their most colorful and bright. We tend to see “peak” hit the Franconia Notch, Lincoln, and Western end of the Kancamagus Highway around the 2nd week of October…on either side of Columbus Day weekend. Points north will usually see peak about a week or so before that, and points east and south will hit peak about a half a week to a week after.
Regardless of when you plan to visit during foliage season, be sure to spend some time visiting a waterfall that you can hike to or view from the roadside. Enjoy a fall-themed festival or event while you are here or take home a piece of the White Mountains at one of our unique, local shops. Plan to stay a while and stay at one of our top-notch lodging facilities and enjoy a delicious meal at one of our specialty restaurants. Be sure to take time to explore and soak in the beauty while you’re visiting this fall.