Leaves the work to them
Ontario fall colours report rakes together key road-trip info
Rejoice, foliage fanatics. These are the prime days of an awesome autumn – and there are at least a few weeks remaining to enjoy Ontario’s spectacular seasonal swatch.
While the annual autumn spectacle — namely, leaves changing colour — is a short season relative to the province’s long, cold winters, there’s no shortage of tourism opportunities to be harvested. To that end, Ontario’s official travel marketing agency has once again raked up all the stats and info pertinent to all things autumnal, helping you plan your next pumpkin spice latte, knitted sweater-wearing adventure.
Compiled weekly from early September to late October, Destination Ontario’s fall colour progression report (available at www.ontariotravel.net) examines the colour change of leaves in regions throughout the province, along with a list of trip ideas and local events. For example, the latest report indicates the Thunder Bay area has reached 65% of its colour change, with drastic change expected in the coming days due to frost in the forecast. The report further adds that incoming shades of yellow and gold are coming on strong, while suggesting Sleeping Giant Provincial Park and the Thunder Bay Lookout Trail as excellent vantage points for visitors.
To the southwest, Grey County, including Owen Sound and Beaver Valley, has only witnessed 20% to 30% colour change, while the Ottawa region, also at about 20% to 30% change, has numerous events listed for the coming weeks.
This fall viewing season has been an apparent step up from recent years, helping give the program a nice boost.
“We’re finding that (the report is) actually getting more and more popular because road trips and fall colour touring is something that everyone seems to be very interested in, especially this year,” said Destination Ontario’s Kevin Forget, adding the growth of social media – and the hardcore selfie enthusiast – likely hasn’t hurt the effort.
While the most popular fall areas from year to year typically include places such as Dorset, the Muskoka region and The Blue Mountains, GTA fall colour options, such as High Park, are in abundance.
Just know, a weekend getaway to Algonquin Park in the coming week or two might not be as perfect as your envision.
“Everybody and their brother is going to Algonquin Park. Traffic jams,” Forget said. “Everyone seems to sort of gravitate towards Algonquin Park and we sort of say, ‘Don’t do that.’ It’s not the only place to see the fall colours and it’s really, really busy at this time of year.”
Workers in Toronto’s High Park round up autumn leaves.