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Fall in Love with Fall

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Milwaukee Living

Yes, fall is finally here! It seems to have come on in an instant – one day sweltering and the next searching for a sweater. Whether or not you are a fan of cool evenings, brisk afternoon walks or watching the skeins of migrating geese, some of the greatest thrills of fall are the vivid autumn colors.

The hickories are usually the first to welcome the shorter days and are easily spotted as golden beacons in the forest. The birch trees, which have spent the summer with whispering green leaves now chatter in their bright yellow plumage. Various oak species turn intense shades of yellow, red, deep brown or copper. And through all the changes our state tree, the Sugar Maple, and all of its relatives burst out with their vibrant array of reds, oranges and yellows.

The change in colors normally starts mid-September and lasts through the final days of October. Starting from the northern tiers of the state, the fall colors march from north to south in a progression impacted by not only the shortening amount of daylight, but also the changes in weather. Warm days and cool nights keep the colors changing and the leaves on the trees longer. When the skies get gloomy and the wind roars the leaves fly away. To keep track of the changing leaf color the Wisconsin Color Report is available at travelwisconsin.com. The report predicts when the color will be at its peak for each county in the state and provides great photos of the change.

As the daylight hours lessen, take the time to go out and enjoy the perfect walk through the woods. The view won’t stay the same for long!