Fall and Spring Color
Fall and spring in southern Indiana are always beautiful. To better enjoy the colors of both these seasons, we have several driving routes recommended.
Fall color in southern Indiana normally begins in mid-late September and peaks the second or third week of October.
Fall Color Reports for week of November 4, 2013.
the yellow and golds of tulip poplars, locust and redbuds add vibrant color to the forest canopy and roadsides. There are also reds from the blackgum trees and sumac, and burnt orange from maples and sassafrass.
Fall flowers including yellow black-eyed susans, purple iron weed and bright yellow goldenrods add color to fields and roadside ditches. Croplands also add their own beauty as fields come alive with fall harvests.
Geese heading south and walnuts falling, making autumn an interesting time to visit the Forest. Bring your binoculars and your camera. The height of fall color is normally the second week of October.
Spring colors creeps gradually into the forest, with the trees along openings and roadsides the first to don spring color. The purple pink of redbud and the creamy white of dogwood make spring many visitor's favorite time to drive forest roads. The forest floor is also bright with trilliums, anemones and a host of other spring wildflowers. Come visit us during the Wildflower Foray held in the spring.
Driving routes for viewing fall and spring color -
Two routes are recommended through the Hoosier National Forest area with infinite variations down rural back roads.
Route 1 -
Route 1 loops through the northern part of the Forest southeast of Bloomington. Highlights include Lake Monroe with breath-taking views of the hills around the lake and the sparkling lake itself with speedboats and sailboats. We also recommend visiting the T.C. Steele Historic Site and walking through the restored gardens and home of this famous painter. Other stops include Nashville, a small historic town nestled in the hills is a retreat for artisans. Crafts and art are popular attractions for visitors in this quaint historic town. Brown County State Park is also on the route, one of the state's most beautiful parks. At the town of Story visit the general store, reminiscent of stores at the turn of the century. Also at Story is a quaint bed and breakfast, an orienteering course, and a large intricate limestone tree carved by a local sculptor at the road junction. A unusual historic road marker, dating to 1851, also stands along the road marking directions to various communities.
View from Hickory Ridge Lookout in the fall.
Two alternate routes begin at Tell City. One suggestion is to take the new Ohio River Scenic Byway along Hwy 66 through Magnet. Visit the communities of Fredonia, Artist Point, Alton, and stop at the Buzzard Roost overlook. The route is relatively remote, with spectacular panoramic vistas, and your chances of seeing wildlife are good. Route 2 follows the mapped route. Highlights of this route include the locks and dam on the Ohio River at Cannelton and the rural countryside. Route 3 is an alternative or extended loop through small rural communities and farmland.
National Fall Color Hotline
The Forest Service provides a toll-free hotline 1-800-354-4595 which posts weekly updates on fall foliage color throughout the nation. Fall color normally begins in mid-September in the northern United States and continues through late November in the southern states. The same information is also available online.
November 4, 2013 -
The Hoosier is at the end of the wonderful fall colors. We still have the lovely oranges traditionally known for fall and combining it with the dark colors of the evergreens, the landscape is quite dramatic.
The weather is to be low to mid 50’s during the day through the weekend with a slight chance of rain. Nights are going to be in the mid to upper 30’s. So if you are coming camping on the Hoosier you will enjoy crisp fall weather.
Local festivals continue on the weekends throughout the fall. Come take a drive, go for a hike or enjoy a campout this week!
Remember, deer hunting season is upon us so if you are in the Forest, be sure to wear bright oranges and greens making sure others know you are there.
View from the Hickory Ridge Lookout Tower, September 10, 17, and 23 and October 22, aand 28, and November 5, 2013.
View along Opera Road in Perry County, September 10, 17, and 23; and October 22, and 28, 2013.