An autumn-like snap is in the air at night and the first touches of color are beginning to emerge among select hardwoods here in New Hampshire. And it all makes sense, too, considering that the Autumnal Equinox (first day of autumn) is on Saturday, September 22nd; truly right around the corner.
While we’re all brimming with excitement and anticipation for fall, there is no need to panic for fear of missing the show. Peak foliage is most likely 2 weeks away, and pockets of brilliance will emerge both before and after that time frame. The weather patterns that have graced New Hampshire over the last several weeks have laid some solid groundwork for a potentially vibrant foliage season. To further the case for a great fall, the long range forecast is calling for a continuation of the current trend; that is, mercury that drops to near freezing temps by night and subsequently recover to the 60s and 70s by day here in the Mount Washington Valley. In short, things are indeed starting to happen around here and there’s cause for excitement!
There are some great resources that you can use to prepare for your fall trip to the White Mountains.
o Visit NH has a superior fall foliage report tool located on their webpage (which is also available in the form of a mobile app). By far, this is the best tool available for predicting, planning, and tracking for the onset of the peak foliage season. Find them at http://www.visitnh.gov/4-seasons/fall-harvest/foliage/foliage-tracker.aspx .
o Foliage photographer Jeff Folger has a great website that now incorporates webcams set up throughout New England! Jeff is a veteran of the fall foliage hunt, and he’s very much attune to the rhythms of the season. His webcam page can be found on his Vista Photography website at http://jeff-foliage.com/new-england-webcam-page/ .
o Finally, The Mount Washington Observatory also has their own small network of webcams, and trust us when we say that no crew on earth is more dialed-in to the weather. Remember, while the calendar dictates the arrival of fall, it’s the weather that orchestrates the intensity of the concerto that is our foliage season. Consider stopping by their site, www.mountwashington.org, to have a peek for yourself.
Fall festivals are part and parcel of New Hampshire’s fall experience.
There are other signals out there pointing to the onset of fall which are less scientific. Several annual fall season events are preparing for opening days, and some have already begun. Activities like pick-your-own apples and the corn maize at Sherman Farm (both of which are still going on, and providing for hours of family fun).
There are also more events to look forward to in the next few weeks. Here’s a glimpse of what to expect in the valley for the next several weeks:
Starting on Sunday, September 30th, nearby Fryeburg Maine kicks off its Blue Ribbon Classic! The fair itself has an interesting history, and today its events delight visitors from all over the country. You can expect to find everything from ox pulling to flower shows, and from woodsmen contests to ladies skillet tosses! Classic fair food abounds and it’s a show you’ll return to year after year. For more information, visit the Fryeburg Fair’s official website at http://www.fryeburgfair.com/.
This insane and unforgettable experience kicks off the Halloween season, starting on September 28th. Located at Cranmore Mountain Ski Area, guests are led through a series of mazes with true terror at every turn. A new feature of this haunted experience this year is a segment called “The Cult”. Guests take a chairlift ride to the summit of the mountain for a true test of grit. We have been told that this is definitely not for everyone, and it’s truly a frightening experience! For more information and a terrific video sneak-peek, visit their site at http://www.cranmore.com/ghoullog/activities/
So now that you’re thinking about fall and the bountiful harvest of fall color, be sure to start planning your trip. We’re happy to answer more questions about the foliage and the festivals, and we hope you’ll think of us when you decide to stay in the heart of the Mount Washington Valley.