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It Was Beautiful While It Lasted

Halloween Tree, Black oak, Topaz Lake (10/30/18) Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

Mono County color spotter Jeff Simpson’s final report just arrived. He wrote, “One of the most spectacular fall color seasons in recent memory is slowly coming to an end.

“Most locations in Mono County are now past peak with the exception of Lower Rock Creek Trail, the West Walker River and the towns of Walker, Coleville and Topaz. “All these locations are at full peak and will have good color for the next five days or so.”

A few groves along the June Lake Loop and in Lundy Canyon still carry bright color, though mostly across Mono County … YOU MISSED IT.

C’mon, Jeff. We expect treats on Halloween, not tricks. Ah well, it was beautiful while it lasted. 

  • Walker Canyon (5,200′) Peak to Past Peak, GO NOW, YOU ALMOST MISSED IT! – Great color remains along the banks of the West Walker River, with some sections Past Peak. The best color is located near Mountain Gate Park closer to Walker.
  • Walker, Coleville and Topaz (5,403′) Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! – A towering boulevard of gorgeous, peaking cottonwood lines US-395 and should remain stunning through the end of the week. Topaz Lake is at full peak and has beautiful sunrises and sunsets.
  • Lower Rock Creek Road (7,087′) Peak to Past Peak, GO NOW, YOU ALMOST MISSED IT! – Lower Rock Creek near Paradise is  still carrying nice color. A few peaking aspen can still be enjoyed along the Lower Rock Creek Trail. It’s now Past Peak above Tom’s Place.
  • Crowley Lake Community 6,949′)  – Peak to Past Peak, GO NOW, YOU ALMOST MISSED IT!

It was beautiful while it lasted.

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Less To Cheer About

June Lake Loop (10/24/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

McGee Creek (10/24/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

Color spotters may have less to cheer about Sunday afternoon, should strong winds (20 – 30 mph) blow across the High Sierra and Cascades, as now predicted.

Locations shown in this article were photographed within the past week. Today (Fri., Oct. 26), tomorrow (Sat., Oct 27) and Sunday morning (Oct. 28) may be the last days to raise your arms in celebration at these locations, if it is windy on Sunday afternoon.

So, if you wanted to see peak color this autumn at Mono County, Lake Tahoe or Plumas County, change your plans and GO NOW! 

McGee Creek (10/24/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

Convict Lake (10/24/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

In anticipation of changing peak areas, we’ve shifted the weather forecast on this site from Mammoth Lakes to Quincy. When judging weather (temp., precip., wind), please keep this in mind.

Should high winds arrive Sunday afternoon, peaked leaves will be stripped quickly from the trees and the peak color you see in these photos will be gone.

That does not mean, however, that California’s autumn show will end.

Trees still carrying green, lime or freshly yellow leaves will not lose many from the wind. And, areas not yet at Peak will continue to develop fall color. They include the: Western Sierra (Yosemite NP, Sequoia NP, Kings Canyon NP, Calaveras Big Trees SP) , Southern California mountains, Trinity County, North Coast, Gold Country, all wine country regions, Central Valley orchards and California’s urban forests.

Nevertheless, if you want to see June Lake, Lake Tahoe, or Plumas County this autumn, get there before Sunday afternoon. Any later and we may be reporting, YOU MISSED IT! 

Conway Summit (10/24/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

(10/24/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

Conway Summit (10/24/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

Beaver Ponds, Lundy Canyon (10/24/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

Aspen, June Lake Loop (10/24/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

Cyclists, June Lake Loop (10/24/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

June Lake Loop (10/24/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

June Lake Loop (10/24/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

Silver Lake, June Lake Loop (10/24/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Twin Lakes, Mono County (10/21/18) Rodney Chai

Conway Summit (10/21/18) Rodney Chai

McGee Creek Canyon (10/21/18) Rodney Chai

McGee Creek Campground (10/21/18) Rodney Chai

Lundy Canyon (10/20/18) Crys Black

Upper Summers Meadow (10/20/18) Crys Black

Upper Summers Meadow (10/20/18) Crys Black

Twin Lakes, Mono County (10/20/18) Crys Black

Luther Pass, CA-89 (10/20/18) John King

Luther Pass, CA-89 (10/20/18) John King

Luther Pass, CA-89 (10/20/18) John King

Black oak, Greenville (10/21/18) Jeff Luke Titcomb

Black oak, Greenville (10/21/18) Jeff Luke Titcomb

Black oak, Hideaway Motel, Greenville (10/21/18) Jeff Luke Titcomb

Black oak, Hideaway Motel, Greenville (10/21/18) Jeff Luke Titcomb

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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An Unbelievable Autumn

Walker River (10/24/18) Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

Convict Lake (10/24/18) Alicia Vennos/Mono County Tourism

California’s 2018 Autumn will be remembered as one of the most unbelievably beautiful and long-lasting, ever. In Mono County, the show has simply been beyond exclamation.

That’s encouraged Mono County’s Alicia Vennos to declare that her destination, our previous pick as “Peak of the Week,” should get its title extended another week, “thanks to gorgeous fall weather with little to no wind.”

Alicia certainly has a point. Many of Mono County’s fall color hotspots deserve a “GO NOW!” designation.

Being that it is so close to Halloween, we don’t want a curse placed on us that would upset fall spirits. So, we urge you to GO NOW! As, this well could be the last call for Peak viewing along US 395.

At the beginning of autumn, had Alicia vowed Mono County’s aspen would be peaking right up to Hallow’s Evening, we would have accused her of brewing an “Unfallen Leaf” spell.

Instead, she’s made us believers and expect one unbelievable Peak Party in Mammoth Lakes on All Hallow’s Eve. 

US 395, Coleville (10/24/18)Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

Topaz Lake (10/24/18)Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

US 395, Coleville (10/24/18) Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

US 395, Coleville (10/24/18) Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

Walker/Coleville/Topaz

  • Monitor Pass (8,314′) – Past Peak – YOU MISSED IT!
  • Lobdell Lake Road (8,600′) – Past Peak – YOU MISSED IT!
  • Walker Canyon (5,200′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! – The shores of the West Walker are gleaming.
  • Towns of Walker & Coleville – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! – Massive cottonwood along US 395 and beside the Walker River in the Antelope Valley are beautiful.
  • Sonora Pass (9,623′) – Past Peak – YOU MISSED IT!

Conway Summit (10/24/18)Alicia Vennos/Mono County Tourism

 

Bridgeport/Virginia Lakes

  • Twin Lakes (7,000′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! –
  • Virginia Lakes (9,819’)- Past Peak – YOU MISSED IT!
  • Conway Summit (8,143′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! – The south side of Conway Summit is at its prettiest. The north side is almost past peak. Conway has a rolling peak with some groves still green, beside bare branches and peak color mixed between them.
  • Summers Meadow (7,200′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! – There’s great color all along the road.

Lee Vining

  • Tioga Pass (9,943′) – Past Peak – YOU MISSED IT!
  • Lee Vining Canyon (6,781′)  Peak to Past Peak, GO NOW, YOU ALMOST MISSED IT!
  • Lundy Lake & Canyon (7,858′) – Peako Past Peak, GO NOW, YOU ALMOST MISSED IT! – Lundy Lake Rd, Lundy Lake, Lundy Campground and the Beaver Ponds still have lots of peak color. The trail to the waterfalls is now Past Peak.

Mono Lake (10/24/18)Alicia Vennos/Mono County Tourism

Lundy Lake (10/24/18)Alicia Vennos/Mono County Tourism

Beaver Pond, Lundy Lake (10/24/18)Alicia Vennos/Mono County Tourism

Lundy Lake (10/24/18)Alicia Vennos/Mono County Tourism

Lundy Lake Rd (10/24/18)Alicia Vennos/Mono County Tourism

Lundy Lake Rd. (10/24/18)Alicia Vennos/Mono County Tourism

Benton & 120 East

  • Sagehen Summit (8,139’) -Past Peak – YOU MISSED IT!

June Lake Loop, Down Canyon (10/24/18)Alicia Vennos/Mono County Tourism

Silver Lake, June Lake Loop (10/24/18)Alicia Vennos/Mono County Tourism

June Lake Loop (10/24/18)Alicia Vennos/Mono County Tourism

June Lake Loop

  • June Lake Loop/Hwy 158 (7,654′) – Peak (75-100%)

Gull Lake Marina (10/24/18)Alicia Vennos/Mono County Tourism

GO NOW! – Fall Color Viewing Tip: The most iridescent color is seen when trees are backlit. Because this is a loop, drive it in both directions to see the best light and color. June Lake at Oh! Ridge is peaking, as is Gull Lake – highly recommended, right now.  The mountainside between Grant Lake is shining with a number of gold and orange aspen groves. Silver Lake is past peak, as are some of the roadside aspens along the Loop, particularly down canyon.

Mammoth Lakes

  • Mammoth Lakes Basin (8,996′) – Past Peak – YOU MISSED IT!
  • Laurel Canyon (8,500′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! (high clearance 4WD required)

Crowley Lake/McGee Creek/Convict Lake

  • McGee Creek Canyon (8,600’) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! – Fingers crossed that it doesn’t blow. If it doesn’t, the color will remain good for another week around the campground and along the trail.
  • Around Crowley community (6,781′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! – This has been Crowley’s best year for Fall Color. It is literally aglow with color.
  • Convict Lake (7850′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! – Convict Lake Campground, the road between Convict Lake Resort and the Marina, and the entire shoreline are inspirational this week. The hike around the lake offers colorful views and photo ops around every bend.

Rock Creek Canyon

  • Rock Creek Road (8,500’+) – Past Peak – YOU MISSED IT!

Remember: even though an area is listed as Past Peak, you will still be able to find spots of nice color. So, if you have the time to explore them, you won’t be disappointed, as the scenery is other worldly.

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Camping on the East Side

Rock Creek Rd., Mono County (10/21/18) Tor Lacy

Big Meadow Campground, Rock Creek Rd., Mono County (10/21/18) Tor Lacy

Numerous color spotters took our advice and headed to the Eastern Sierra this past weekend.

Tor Lacy and his wife got “out of Long Beach” to camp at Big Meadow along Rock Creek Rd. surrounded by quaking aspen full of Peak color. 

  • Big Meadow Campground, Rock Creek Rd. – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW!

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Stay or Drive

Lundy Lake, Mono County (10/21/18) Clayton Peoples

Conway Summit, Mono County (10/21/18) Clayton Peoples

Lundy Lake, Mono County (10/21/18) Clayton Peoples

Lundy Lake, Mono County (10/21/18) Clayton Peoples

Lundy Lake, Mono County (10/21/18) Clayton Peoples

June Lake, Mono County (10/21/18) Clayton Peoples

June Lake, Mono County (10/21/18) Clayton Peoples

Half Dome, Yosemite National Park (10/21/18) Clayton Peoples

Lower Yosemite Fall, Yosemite National Park (10/21/18) Clayton Peoples

Merced River, Yosemite National Park (10/21/18) Clayton Peoples

There are two types of color spotters: one Stays at a location and works it, the other Drives to many locations, seeing fall color across a broad area.

There’s something to be said for both approaches.

The Stay approach allows time for hiking, relaxing, taking in the color and being at a select spot longer providing for better opportunities to see and photograph it at its best.

The Drive approach provides the experience of enjoying driving along boulevards of fall color, of seeing many places, of appreciating the variety of color to be seen and exploring the forests and towns where fall color is best.

This past weekend, color spotter Clayton Peoples drove a large Sierra loop to the Eastern Sierra and back to the Western Sierra, demonstrating the advantages of the Drive approach.

He reports, “Conway Summit is still just patchy. There’s lots of green among the aspen groves, but there are some stands that are turning. A good zoom lens is best at the moment, which allows one to focus in on groves that are turning and/or mixed.

“Lundy Canyon is at peak. The groves around Lundy Lake are in full color, as are the groves along the dirt road to the trailhead and beside the Lundy Canyon Trail. It is mostly brilliant yellow with a bit of light orange mixed in. Definitely worth a trip!

“The June Lake Loop has reached peak color. Aspen along the Loop and surrounding its pristine lakes have all turned and range from vivid golden yellow to orange. Good color will likely last here another week or so … I recommend that folks “GO NOW” before the best is in the past.

“Yosemite National Park is patchy. The few aspen groves at higher elevations are at full peak, but trees at lower elevations are just beginning to turn. That said, some of the black oak along the Merced River are already sporting bright yellow leaves, and brush ranges from green to yellow to red, so progress toward “near peak” status is not far away,” Clayton reported. 

  • Conway Summit, Mono County – Near Peak (50-75%) GO NOW! (While Clayton rated Conway as Patchy, that’s the nature of the groves, which turn sequentially. The area evolves through successive Patchy, Near Peak and Peak ratings.)
  • Lundy Canyon, Mono County – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW!
  • June Lake Loop, Mono County – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW!
  • Tioga Road, Yosemite National Park, Tuolumne County – Past Peak, YOU MISSED IT!
  • Yosemite Valley, Yosemite National Park, Mariposa County – Near Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! Again, our assessment varies from Clayton’s, as Yosemite has rolling peaks. Because of this, it is easily mis-classified. After the small amount of fall color has peaked along the Tioga Road, Pacific dogwood begin to turn rose to pink and red, then bigleaf maple turn yellow, then cottonwood gold and finally black oak turn orange. Though one specie may be patchy, another may be past peak or peaking. Knowing this helps determine when to visit Yosemite. Yosemite’s famous pioneer sugar maple (planted a century ago near the Yosemite Chapel) peaked in the past two weeks. Now, bigleaf maple are peaking and cottonwood and black oak are approaching peak.

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What Matters Most

June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

So what if:

  • It’s your daughter’s wedding.
  • You have 50-yard-line tickets to the big game.
  • Your big retirement dinner happens Saturday and everyone will be there.
  • After flirting for months, you finally got asked out by the hot barista at the coffee shop.
  • The Nobel Prize committee just called and would like to meet you on Sunday.
  • It’s your tenth wedding anniversary and you have tickets to Paris.
  • Your doctor called and you’re finally scheduled for open-heart surgery.

Don’t get tunnel vision (unless it’s what you see, above).

All that matters is that fall color surrounding Mammoth Lakes in Mono County is peaking and that’s EPIC! 

Cancel all plans and GO NOW! Here’s why:

June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

Gull Lake, June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

Gull Lake, June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

June Lake Loop (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

Beaver Ponds, Lundy Canyon (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

Beaver Ponds, Lundy Canyon (10/18/18) Josh Wray/Mammoth Lakes Tourism

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Peak of the Week: Mono County

Conway Summit, US 395 (10/12/18) Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

June Lake Loop (10/12/18) Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

Convict Lake (10/12/18) Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

California Fall Color has refrained from declaring a peak of the week this autumn, though if there is a week to do it, this is it.

Along US 395 in Mono County (Eastern Sierra), fall color will be peaking for the next week and a half at: Crowley Lake, McGee Creek, Convict Lake, the June Lake Loop, Lundy Canyon, Conway Summit, Summers Meadow, Twin Lakes Bridgeport and Monitor Pass.

Green areas remain in some of these areas, but the vast majority of locations are showing brilliant yellow and orange.

Lundy Canyon (10/12/18) Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

Crowley Lake (10/12/18) Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

Near Peak areas include Lee Vining Canyon, the West Walker River and the big cottonwood trees in the towns of Walker, Coleville and Topaz. Beautiful color can be seen now and in a week, it’ll be spectacular.

Now, the bad news. YOU MISSED IT in Mono County at: Sagehen Summit, Lobdell lake Road and the upper sections of Tioga Pass, Sonora Pass and Virginia Lakes and Rock Creek Rd. There’s a little at lower elevations and in scattered groves, but generally it has fallen. 

June Lake Loop (10/12/18) Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

Here’s the blow by blow:

Walker/Coleville/Topaz

  • Monitor Pass (8,314′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! – Peaking colors along the top sections of the pass will only hang around for another few days. This section will be past peak next week.
  • Lobdell Lake Road (8,600′) – Past Peak – YOU MISSED IT!
  • Walker Canyon (5,200′) – Near Peak (50-75%) GO NOW! – Patchy in sections with full peaking trees in others. Still another 7 days for the full display.
  • Towns of Walker & Coleville – Near Peak (50-75%) GO NOW! – A few cottonwoods are peaking but very patchy still in most sections. This will be the last place to peak in Mono County.
  • Sonora Pass (9,623′) – Past Peak – YOU MISSED IT! – Color lingers in shivering bunches at Leavitt Meadow.

Green Creek Rd., Mono County (10/12/18) Kirsten Liske

Bridgeport/Virginia Lakes

  • Twin Lakes (7,000′) – Near Peak (50-75%) GO NOW! -Still a little patchy in sections but worth the drive. Take the dirt road around lower twin lakes great angles of the Sawtooth Mountains.
  • Virginia Lakes (9,819’)- Past Peak – YOU MISSED IT!
  • Conway Summit (8,143′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! – Sections with brilliant color and others with some green still hanging around. This will be spectacular for the next 10 days.
  • Summers Meadow (7,200′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! – We love Summers Meadow. It has one of the great long stretches of brilliant color in the state at peak. Presently, the color has worked down, though has a wonderful mix of red, orange, yellow and lime

Green Creek Rd., Mono County (10/12/18) Kirsten Liske

Lee Vining

  • Tioga Pass (9,943′) – Past Peak – YOU MISSED IT!
  • Lee Vining Canyon (6,781′) – Near Peak (50-75%) GO NOW! – Still green in some sections, while others have 80% yellow leaves with some trees past peak. Take Log Cabin Mine road for colors that will be good for the next two weeks.
  • Lundy Lake & Canyon (7,858′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! – Lundy Canyon Trail should be perfect right now but might be past peak as we get closer to the weekend. Lundy Lake and Lundy Campground will be fantastic this weekend.

Benton & 120 East

  • Sagehen Summit (8,139’) -Past Peak – YOU MISSED IT!

June Lake Loop

  • June Lake Loop/Hwy 158 (7,654′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! – This is the week to visit the June Lake Loop. It won’t get better than it is now. There are so many great spots along Grant, Silver, Gull and June Lakes. Make this destination a priority for the weekend.

Mammoth Lakes

  • Mammoth Lakes Basin (8,996′) – Past Peak – YOU MISSED IT!

McGee Creek (10/14/18) Benjamin Vu

Crowley Lake/McGee Creek/Convict Lake

  • McGee Creek Canyon (8,600’) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! – Still fantastic color up the canyon with great color now located along the campground and US 395 level.
  • Around Crowley community (6,781′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! – Great color around the town and the surrounding hills. Take the old US 395 road to Toms Place for the best views.
  • Convict Lake (7850′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! – Great color along Convict Lake Campground and the shores around the lake. Still green in some sections but make sure to take the quick and flat hike around the lake for the best viewing opportunities!

Rock Creek Canyon

  • Rock Creek Road (8,500’+) – Past Peak – YOU MISSED IT!  – It’s Past Peak up the canyon, though near Tom’s Place and in lower sections of the canyon spots of nice color are still found.

Silver Lake, June Lake Loop (10/12/18) Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

Lundy Canyon (10/12/18) Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

Silver Lake, June Lake Loop (10/12/18) Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Convict Lake (10/12/18) Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

Rock Creek Rd. (10/12/18) Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

Rock Creek Rd. (10/12/18) Jeff Simpson/Mono County Tourism

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Over The Top

Log Cabin Rd., Mono County (10/13/18) Gene Miller

Tioga Pass (CA-120E), Yosemite National Park (10/13/18) Gene Miller

June Lake Camp, June Lake Loop (10/14/18) Gene Miller

On a whim, this past weekend, color spotter Gene Miller crossed the Sierra Nevada to the East Side and found “over the top” color.

Gene is a midwest transplant who misses autumn there, though has  “come to appreciate the Fall Colors … here.”
He said that getting there, was fraught with stops along the Tioga Road (CA-120E) where the trees were “mostly ‘At Peak’ or a little ‘past peak’,” depending on elevation, though when he descended Tioga Pass to Log Cabin Road, he found it “At Peak and brilliant!”

Log Cabin Rd., Mono County (10/13/18) Gene Miller

Log Cabin Rd., Mono County (10/13/18) Gene Miller

Sherwin Creek Campground, Mono County (10/14/18) Gene Miller

Sherwin Creek Campground, Mono County (10/14/18) Gene Miller

Spent aspen, June Lake Loop (10/13/18) Gene Miller

Silver Lake, June Lake Loop (10/14/18) Gene Miller

June Lake (10/14/18) Gene Miller

Silver Lake, June Lake Loop (10/14/18) Gene Miller

June Lake Loop (10/14/18) Gene Miller

Silver Lake, June Lake Loop (10/14/18) Gene Miller

On Sunday, he was impressed by color along the June Lake Loop and at Silver Lake, but realized areas like Sherwin Creek Campground at Mammoth Lakes were Past Peak and loosing leaves. 

  • Tioga Pass (9,943′) – Past Peak, YOU MISSED IT!
  • Log Cabin Rd. (7,545′)- Peak (75-100%) GO NOW!
  • June Lake Loop(7,654′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW!
  • Sherwin Creek Campground, Mammoth Lakes (7,600′) – Peak to Past Peak, YOU ALMOST MISSED IT!

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Ducky at Silver Lake

Mallard ducks, Silver Lake, June Lake Loop (10/14/18) Jeff Simpson/Mono Lake Tourism

A mating pair of Mallard Ducks enjoyed a rest from their southbound migration Saturday at Silver Lake on the June Lake Loop where fall color is Near Peak. Now, isn’t that just ducky? 

  • Silver Lake (7,200′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW!
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Touching Gold in Lundy Canyon

McGee Creek Canyon (10/14/18) Rodney Chai

Lundy Canyon (10/14/18) Rodney Chai

McGee Creek Canyon (10/14/18) Rodney Chai

Rodney Chai, a meteorologist from Monterey, led a group of hikers to Lundy Canyon and McGee Creek as recommended here, last week, and they “found gold (and then some)!”

Reporting that they were collectively “speechless by the vibrant display of yellow and apricot.”

Should you hike Lundy Canyon, you’ll find the first mile to have a lot of green (20-30%), though Chai estimates it will “be excellent viewing for the upcoming weekend.”

His group found the most intense color at about “mile 2, where a forest of quaking aspens reside.” Above that, the trail was past peak with a lot of leaves that had fallen.

McGee Creek, he continued, “was simply splendid from start to finish with a golden sea of aspen and apricot. The range of yellow and apricot, as well as the ability to see up the canyon made this his favorite hike. 

  • Lundy Canyon Trail (7,858′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW!
  • McGee Creek Trail (8,600′) – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW!