The northern leaves pass their peak; explosion of color still to come for Twin Cities

After a little warming, temperatures are returning to a familiar cold as leaves in half the state enter the “past peak.” Don’t worry, there are still plenty of opportunities to see fall foliage before you have bare trees.

For Bemidji, the Iron Chain and Duluth – soak up while you can, as the leaves next to you pass their peak.

If you’re in the southern half of the state like Rochester, the Twin Cities, and even St. Cloud, the leaves are only at 50-75% of their peak, which means you should see a gorgeous array of colors. .

Here are some highlights from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources’ most recent review of foliage and color conditions in state parks and recreation areas.

This week’s DNR color detector map.

Minnesota Department of Natural Resources

Luckily, there’s still plenty of color to see at Whitewater State Park. Hike the Chimney Rock Trail to Inspiration Point to take in the fall view. A few maples on the cliffs are past their prime, but many are still taking their time to turn. The oaks turn brown and gold.

Leaves are only 50-75% of their peak at Talking Lake State Park. The lookout on the east side of the lake will provide the best views of the valley. Sumac, a native bush, turned red in September and is one of the only leafy bushes in southwestern Minnesota. The Talking Lake area is known for its beautiful views of the night sky, so bundle up, bring your telescope, and get into position.

Take a walk along the Minnehaha trail to see the colors. Some leaves have fallen due to the wind and cold, “but the canopy is still a pleasing spectrum of chartreuse and ochre,” according to the Department. Trumpeter swans have been spotted on Lake Snelling. Keep an eye out for whitetail deer and bucks.

Temperance River State Park is “past its prime,” but there are still beautiful fall colors hanging around for a little longer. Carlton Peak will provide a good fall hike with views of the maple trees. Descend to the walkway to the river gorge to see pink salmon spawning.

The larch trees along the promenade are beginning to turn orange. You will also see mushrooms and colorful mosses. Climb the fire tower for the best view of the fall colors.

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Carol N. Valencia