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Thumbs Up for Autumn, Rock Creek (9/13/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

Rock Creek Lake (9/13/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

Rock Creek (9/13/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

Reports from the Eastern Sierra indicate that autumn color is good to go up the canyons with peak color starting to appear near 10,000′.

It happens quickly in late September, as days shorten and temperatures drop. So, be prepared for possible Near Peak at high elevations there, by the first day of autumn.

Josh Wray, of Mammoth Lakes, drove south to Rock Creek (southern Mono County) to capture what was happening up the canyon, and though it was still Just Starting for most of the canyon, more than enough Near Peak color could be seen along the Hilton Lake Trail at 10,300′.

Aspen, Silver Lake (9/3/18) Cindy Hoover

Willow, Silver Lake (8/31/18) Cindy Hoover

Color spotter Cindy Hoover explored the June/Mono Lake region of Mono County earlier in the week, reporting that Silver Lake is where early color is visible with willows full of gold and singled-out aspen branches bright yellow, while the rest of the trees remain green, but noticeably lighter than a few weeks ago.

Near Mono Lake, Cindy was wowed by a spectacular display of rabbit brush, carpeting the high plains toward a pink-orange sunset.

Krisdina Karady of Parcher’s Resort on the South Fork of Bishop Creek reported that color is still Just Starting, with some aspen branches carrying golden color, but most of the trees remain dark green to lime. A complete report is expected this coming week. 

Near Peak (50-75%) – Hilton Lakes Trail (10,300′)

Just Starting (0-10%) – Rock Creek (9,500′)

Just Starting (0-10%) – June Lake Loop (7,654′)

Just Starting (0-10%) – Mono Lake, South Tufa (6,378′)

Just Starting (0-10%) – Bishop Creek Canyon (Parcher’s Resort – 9,260′)

Rabbit Brush, Mono Lake S Tufa (9/6/18) Cindy Hoover

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3 replies
  1. soyoung says:

    so happy to have found this blog!! the photos are gorgeous!! generally, how long does it take to get from 10% to “peak” colors? trying to plan a visit either this weekend or next to hike parker and convict lakes and mcgee creek!

    • John Poimiroo says:

      Thanks for commenting, Soyoung. I’ve seen it transition from 10% to Peak in a day, though that’s unusual. McGee Creek should be Near Peak by the end of Sept.

      • soyoung says:

        thank you so much!! we just moved here from the east coast, so i will be so excited to see some beautiful fall colors against the stunning backdrop of the sierra! :o) looking forward to all the photos you will be posting here in the next few weeks!

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