Could Drought Conditions Affect Leaf Peeping In MA?
As summer is slowly but surely winding down, fall is just around the corner and that means local residents and visitors will be making their way all across the beautiful Berkshires to check out the fall foliage. However, there could be a problem this year. Our lack of precipitation has led to a drought in our backyard due to the dry and humid weather and the colors probably will not be at peak color.
According to a recent report from The U.S. Drought Monitor, the eastern part of Massachusetts is in a severe stage of drought, but for us out west, the conditions remain moderate as we have had some bouts of beneficial rain, but not enough to satisfy the picture perfect settings we are all used to seeing. Yankee Magazine reports the best sightings will be found in Vermont's Green Mountains and the White Mountains in New Hampshire, as well as western Maine as these areas, have seen a robust rainfall, despite the hot weather.
Our peak color in The Berkshires falls around the second or third week in October. Fall foliage expert Jim Salge commented on the outcome regarding our scenery from North Adams to Ashley Falls:
"There is certainly color beforehand and lots of lingering color afterward since the topography has a lot of mixed forests".
The Massachusetts Nature Conservancy also predicts a delay regarding the development of fall color as leaf peeping could develop a slew of cool mornings in the upcoming month of September. This could play in our favor by the middle to the latter part of October. However, these muggy and humid days are transforming into uncomfortable evenings. The lack of cooldown means we could see another delay in our yearly fall foliage.
Travel experts are afraid the Berkshires could be bypassed for other terrains up north where the leaves will be at their peak.
A recent report from IBerkshires states there is no need to panic as our area is STILL a must-stop destination to catch the leaves making their breathtaking changes as crowds will continue to flock to the area due to its proximity to major cities. My advice is to plan accordingly and snap some vintage photos that contain a magical color during this magical time of year.
For more details on planning your excursion log on to berkshires.org.
(Some information obtained in this article courtesy of the Berkshire Eagle)