Commissioner of Forest Parks and Recreation and forester Mike Snyder talks about the science behind the changing leaves in autumn in Vermont

Fall Foliage Prediction

Science of autumn

It’s starting early. We’re seeing foliage season creeping in with leaves already starting to turn. And for August, we’ve had some wonderfully cooler days.

This fall foiliage is a little more special as it’ll be my first living in Vermont. As September ages and slips into October we’ll be exposed to a blanket of amazing reds, yellows and oranges. We’ll try to keep you all up-to-date through out the season starting right after Labor Day and our official September 9th re-opening.

Vermont has the most vibrant fall foliage in the northeast. As Vermont is 76 percent forested and home to more than 50 state parks, leaf peepers can view expansive foliage across more than 300,000 acres of state-owned forests beautifully contrasted next to farm valleys, towns and waterways.

We’ll be following and’s Foliage Reports and linking to some wonderful photos at’s Autumn Photo Gallery—photos shot by local photographers and visitors to Vermont. Part of our reporting will be coming from the US Forest Service, the Vermont Department of Tourism and any “leaf peepers” who update us.

The map here is from and gives an approximate view of the current foliage color in Vermont. 

Early Foliage Map August 2013

Reprinted from

Here are 5 quick ways to make your autumn odyssey a great one. 

People travel from all over the globe to witness Vermont’s fall colors. It’s not uncommon for inns and hotels to fill up as much as a year in advance. But, even during “peak” foliage season, there are always rooms in Vermont. 

Experienced foliage visitors come mid-week when the weekend crowds are usually long gone. For other insider “secrets,” read our Fall Travel Tips section.

There is no magical moment when the leaves reach their most vibrant. Peak is a continuum and every season it moves differently depending on weather patterns, soil conditions and the health of the forests. And, of course, location plays a big part.

Not only will you avoid the bigger crowds found in resort areas, you’ll enjoy some breathtaking views traveling the backroads of Vermont.

The best local views are usually easy to find – if you know where to look. A great source for local information are the folks at Vemont’s village stores or the owners of a local inn or B&B. Like you, they are constantly watching the colors unfold around them. Just stop in to the local shop or ask your innkeeper about foliage spots – they’ll usually be more than happy to share their favorite viewpoint.