Fall Colour Report
Fall Colour in Algonquin Park 2015
During the past 42 years in Algonquin Park, the peak Sugar Maple fall colour has ranged from as early as September 15 (1982) to as late as October 9 (1996). This year the peak Sugar Maple colour was determined to be October 8, 2015 (nearly record late as a result of warm fall temperatures). Many factors such as temperature, rainfall, wind speed, and daylight length all play factors in when the peak will occur and how long it will last. High winds, rain, or even snow can sometimes quickly result in fragile leaves being knocked off the trees increasing what is called "leaf fall".
The peak of Algonquin Park's Sugar Maple forests is traditionally expected during the last week of September or first week of October. An Algonquin Park visit between early and mid-October will observe the peak yellow-orange colours displayed by poplar and birch species. A mid to late October visit showcases Tamarack at their peak yellow colour before dropping their needles in preparation for winter.
Traditionally, Algonquin Park's fall colour occurs earlier than surrounding areas because of the Park's higher elevation and shorter growing season. During the past 40+ years of detailed record keeping, the earliest autumn leaf colour peak recorded was September 15, 1982, and the latest was October 9, 1996. The average peak of the Sugar Maple canopy in the western portion of the Highway 60 Corridor is September 27. The precise peak fall colour for the Sugar Maple canopy in Algonquin Park for 2014 was determined to be September 26. In 2015, the peak fall Sugar Maple fall colour was October 8. In order to observe the Sugar Maple canopy colour a trip in mid September to early October is a wise idea. Learn more about the history of Algonquin Park's Sugar Maple colour peak.
Visitors coming to Algonquin Park in early to mid October (including Thanksgiving) are likely to catch the transition between the peak of the Sugar Maple colour and the onset of the peak yellow-orange colours displayed by poplar and birch species.
A mid to late October visit generally means the maples are well “past peak" or "bare", but the Tamarack, also know as Larch, are reaching their peak yellow colour before dropping their needles for the winter. The Tamarack is Algonquin Park's only cone bearing tree that changes colour and drops all its needles in preparation for winter. By late October or early November (depending upon environmental conditions) all deciduous trees are bare and prepared for winter.
Regardless of the exact date, Algonquin Park's Interpretive Trails are a good bet for viewing the fall colour. Trails offering lookouts with wide vistas are especially popular around the Sugar Maple peak and the later peak of poplar and birch species.
- Algonquin Park Webcam
- Images of Fall in Algonquin Park (Facebook)
- Submit your images of fall in Algonquin
Plan Your Visit
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- Fall in Algonquin Park
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- Trees of Algonquin Provincial Park