Fall Foliage Color Begins in the NC Mountains


Early Fall Color, September 15, 2012, Great Smoky Mountains

Early fall color with deep reds and bright yellows are beginning to show in the highest elevations of the North Carolina Mountains near Asheville, including the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the Blue Ridge Parkway. Peak color in these higher elevations will peak in about three weeks. Then the color show will progress down the mountains to the lowest valleys through October. See our week-by-week Fall Foliage Color Guide for the latest updates, fall events and festivals, and the best places to see autumn at its best.

With recent sunny skies and cool nights (a great combo for bright colors), we still expect a fantastic color season. For the most spectacular fall vistas, see our new Top 15 Mountain Views near Asheville. All of these are free to visit. Other free things to do include the Blue Ridge Parkway with its many overlooks, hiking trails and attractions on one of America’s most scenic roads. There are hundreds of hiking trails to explore in Pisgah and Nantahala National Forests. And don’t forget to see some waterfalls!

This is a great time of year to be outdoors, but remember that weather conditions can change quickly and vary greatly in the mountains. While it is sunny and 75 degrees in Asheville, it could be foggy and 55 degrees just 25 miles away on a mountaintop like Mt. Mitchell or Mt. Pisgah.

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