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Take an autumn drive through New York’s Adirondacks. Photo: iStock

As residents of four-season climates are realizing balmy breezes are a thing of the past, fall ushers in more than just crisp, sweater-wearing weather: the spectrum of radiant fall colors looms. Check out these must-sees for fall foliage to get you in a cool-weather mindset.

New York’s Adirondacks, traversed by 12 scenic byways, is hard to dismiss. Make your way along the scenic 170-mile Olympic Trail, which links Lake Ontario to Lake Champlain. Along the way, pass Lake Placid, and absorb the rich, changing shades of beech, maple, birch and oak trees ablaze in red, orange and yellow hues.

It’s also hard to go wrong in Aspen this time of year, its mountain backdrop offset by the waterfall-studded Grottos and a plethora of vibrant, namesake trees. Of course, Vermont is no slouch. Make your way along the Green Mountain Byway to see burgundy sumacs, lipstick-red sugar maples and cheery yellow birch trees.

Of course, you could always make your way to North Carolina’s Mount Mitchell State Park. Hook up with the picturesque Blue Ridge Parkway and see the Eastern U.S.’s highest peak, not to mention brilliant poplar and maple trees.

Mind you, Mother Nature certainly has her way in Maine. Consider taking Route 11 to the Naples Causeway on Route 302 in Naples, the state’s lake region. From there, continue to Bridgton, and ascend Pleasant Mountain for panoramic views. Consider, too, hopping on Route 2 west to Gilead; then, head south on 113 through White Mountain National Forest, where you’ll be rewarded with the the White Mountains’ jaw-dropping foliage.

Plan on being in Georgia? Hit Chattahoochee National Forest. Ellijay and surrounding Gilmer County are stippled with you-pick apple orchards. It’s also the site of the annual Georgia Apple Festival, held in mid-October.


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Jennifer Olvera

Jennifer Olvera

Jennifer Olvera is a culinary travel writer, recipe developer and author of Food Lovers’ Guide to Chicago. Find her on Twitter at @olverajennifer.
Jennifer Olvera

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