When we Denver, Colorado in September, we decided we would route our trip home to North Carolina in a way that maximized our time in peak fall season. We wanted to time our drive to follow perfectly cool fall weather and the changing leaves.
We started our quest for fall in the high altitude of Rocky Mountain National Park, where the Aspen leaves burn bright yellow and orange in a forest full of evergreens.
We then hurried across the plains to Cuyahoga Valley in Ohio, where we biked miles on the towpath beneath the turning leaves.
We climbed into the Allegheny Mountains in northern Pennsylvania, where we explored the turning season along Lake Erie and Niagara Falls.
We then headed north to Ithaca, where the finger lakes, gorges, and trees completely stunned us.
From there, in the last week have been traveling on Skyline Drive beneath the orange canopy of the Shenandoah Mountains.
We’ve basically spent the last four weeks jumping from one changing area to the next, and we will continue to chase fall to the eastern shore of Maryland.
In all of the places we’ve visit, there is a clear winner for best fall leaves, and that’s Ithaca, New York.
We seemed to hit Ithaca at exactly the right time, and everything from the color of the leaves to the weather to the fall festivals hit our sentimental sweet spot for fall.
If you are ever looking for a place to spend a long weekend or a week during the fall, I highly recommend a visit to the finger lakes region in New York, particularly near Ithaca, NY.
Here are some of our photos from our colorful stay in Ithaca.