Early October is typically the start of my search for fall colors, but this year…
I have been scouting several times by myself and with Linda searching for new locations to photograph this fall and some early fall colors. My scouting trips were successful, but the search for fall colors were not successful. The trees on our walks in our neighborhood starting turning early and most are now past their peak color. But, I could not find any leaves changing on the hills or in the valleys. On one of my drives this past week, I noticed that many sycamore trees still had green leaves. They are typically the first to turn a yellowish brown and then fall revealing their beautiful white bark against a colorful fall palette.
The secret to finding fall colors?
Maybe the secret is to sneak into the forest unnoticed. I decided this past Monday to load up my gear and search for fall colors. Unfortunately, we lost electricity just before 6:00 pm Sunday night and it was not restored until a few minutes before midnight. With no Wi-Fi for my tablet, I was not able to check the weather or the time of sunrise (I forgot to use my phone). I decided I would arrive at my first location just after sunrise, that is, after I finished my breakfast and loaded the SUV.
When I checked the Weather channel after turning off the alarm, I saw the warning for fog. If there was no color, then there would be some fog! I left home shortly after 6 am and managed to arrive at my first location to see fog and fall colors just before sunrise. My estimate for the time of sunrise was off by about 30 minutes.
I tried several locations with varying success. Sometimes, the fog was so thick I did not bother stopping. A couple of the locations I wanted to photograph required two visits before the visibility increased. After photographing several locations in Brown County State Park, I decided to drive to Yellowwood Lake to scout a couple of locations. Much to my surprise I found some color at the lake and took my time to capture a scene. There was still fog in some areas as late as 11:00 am.
A few days later, I ventured to another location I had scouted. I was completely disappointed. There was no color along the river ̶ all the leaves were GREEN. And, I had misjudged the location of the sun that was directly above the water. I will go again, but later in the afternoon and when I see some fall colors outside my neighborhood.
Optimistic or pessimistic?
There is supposed to be rain for the next several days. If there is no wind, then the fall colors should pop late in the week or by the weekend. I have gone from optimistic to pessimistic for an above average fall this year. Today, I am pessimistic as I am afraid the rain might bring wind and knock the leaves to the ground.
In the meantime, I can always rake leaves in the yard.