|Time is now for fall foliage trips as autumn colors reach their peak|
|From Staff Reports|
Nov. 12, 2006 - The coming week is predicted to be ideal for sightseeing trips to drink in the fall colors across East Texas, according to reports from the East Texas Tourism Association.
The first weekend of November saw fall foliage color at between 30 and 60 percent, and should be at least 70 percent this weekend. The autumn leaves in the region should be at their most colorful over the next seven days.
The first wave in color resulted from two light frosts - the first of the season - across the upper part of the region, which coupled with blue skies and sunny weather, has accelerated color.
"What you are seeing now is the turning of the leaves of the hickory, native red and sugar maple, sweet and black gums, dogwood, sassafras, and the staghorn sumac," reports Howard Rosser, executive director of the East Texas Tourism Association in Longview. "Contrasted with the pine greenery, the foliage makes a spectacular display."
Color will continue to develop in the southern reaches of the region. The second wave of color overall will come with a good cold snap, and it is then that the oaks brighten from yellows to red. This usually happens before Thanksgiving, with good color often into the first part of December.
"It comes in waves", Rosser says. "When the first hard rains and freeze come you think it is gone - all those leaves on the forest floor. But in the background come those late-turning hardwoods, lasting past Thanksgiving, right into the spectacular Christmas lighting season of the region."
For updates, call ETTA at 903-757-4444, or visit the association’s website at www.easttexasguide.com. Routes and itineraries, lodging, eating and other amenities are listed, as well.