Mt. Palomar (Patchy 10 – 50%) – We beg forgiveness for the pun in the headline, though considering the observatory atop Mt. Palomar, we couldn’t miss the opportunity to post it.
Modern Hiker’s Scott Turner reports that most of the black oaks on Mt. Palomar still have a long way to go before they turn. The rain and the wind have stripped some of the trees – particularly those on south-facing slopes, but most of the oaks retain their leaves and are around 25-50% turned on the north-facing slopes and over 50% on the south-facing slopes. Bark beetles are not a problem here, and Palomar has actually been close to matching its average precipitation since July, which is 3x that of the lower elevations.
Riparian foliage, including berries, box elders, and dogwoods are showing a bit more color. Dogwoods are showing colors ranging from green, yellow, pink and red, while box elders are lime green. The berry plants are yellowing nicely. Scott estimates that Mt. Palomar will peak in one to two weeks. Last year, we received photographs of black oak peaking near the observatory.