*Average New Jersey peak fall color is October 19 through 29*
The 2014 NJ Fall Foliage season is a ways away but it’s never too early to start thinking about it.
To help plan your New Jersey foliage hikes and scenic drives, check out the New Jersey and the Northeast Foliage Resources below, plus our Fall Foliage Report Archive.
Check out our recommendations for Best Fall Foliage Hikes in New Jersey.
Share your report! Post a report/photo of your own:
- Visit our NJ Fall Foliage 2013 forum
- Post on the NJ Hiking Facebook page
- Tweet @njhiking or email updates to us
For foliage reports for the rest of United states, check out our Fall Foliage Reports page.
2013 NJ Fall Foliage Report
[Visit our NJ Fall Foliage 2013 forum for current photos]
Current (11/12): Color is at peak color this week for some central areas still as well as southern NJ, but the foliage season in Jersey will likely be wrapping up this weekend.
Palisades Interstate Park – Spectacular color! Lots of leaf drop but that is as colorful as the trees. [report via Gone Hikin']
Cheesequake State Park – Peak color, with 70% leaf drop
Rt. 18 thru Matawan – Peak color [report via NJ HIKING]
Stokes State Forest – Along the Blue Mountain and Silver Mine Trails, still some small patches of color. [report via Brom V.]
Round Valley Reservoir – Peak color, with 50-60% leaf drop
In general, color is at peak across central NJ and into southeastern PA [report via NJ HIKING]
Southern NJ/Millville area – still mostly green but now with pops of color. [reports via Tracy B.]
Ramapo Mountain State Forest – Peak color to past peak; 70% leaf drop
Rt 287 N, Morristown area to exit 57 – Mix of moderate to high color, 50% leaf drop [report via NJ HIKING]
The Pinnacle and the Pulpit – The Appalachian Trail in Hamburg, PA – High to Peak color, with 30% leaf drop
Rt 78 W, from Rt 287 to Round Valley area – Moderate to high color, 20% leaf drop
Rt 78 W, from Round Valley area to Hamburg, PA – High to peak color, 30% leaf drop [report via NJ HIKING]
High Point State Park - Peak to past peak, 50% leaf drop.
Rt 23 on the way to High Point – Mostly past peak.
Rt. 206 through Chester – moderate to high color, 20% leaf drop.
Rt 287 on the way to Chester – moderate, still a decent amount of green. [reports via NJ HIKING]
Swartswood State Park – Show’s over. About 90% leaf drop. [report via Gone Hikin']
Central NJ, Rt 18 and Rt 520 into Red Bank – moderate to high color appearing [report via NJ HIKING]
Hammonton near Batsto – low color, starting to turn
Southern NJ/Millville area – low color [reports via Tracy B.]
Van Campen’s Glen – Not much color, lots of leaves down. [reports via Brom V.]
Black Rock Forest, NY – There is some great color in Black Rock Forest right now, the nicest I have seen this year. Lots of bright yellow, peach and orange. There are still sections of mostly green trees here and there but also a lot of leaf drop. I would say color change is about 60 – 70%. [report via Gone Hikin']
Norvin Green State Forest – Color varied a bit through the area but on average I’d call it Medium since there was still a decent amount of green left on some trees. Starting from Weis ecology center and looped around via Otter hole. [report via Eric B.]
Sterling Forest, NY – High color, with leaf drop that seemed more than normal (likely due to recent rains). [report via NJ HIKING]
Rt. 17 in Mahwah; Garden State Parkway Paramus area – Moderate color change, still large sections of green. [report via NJ HIKING]
High Point State Park – Found the foliage to be somewhat disappointing. I think a lot of the color was lost in the rain and wind storm on Monday, 10/7. There was a lot of leaf drop and most of the remaining color was brown/drab yellow. There were still some spots of color, just not as much as expected. [report via Gone Hikin']
Sussex County / Kittatinny Ridge / Little Swartswood Lake – Low towards Moderate Colors. Not peak yet, but leaves coming down & nice photogenic colors definitely happening. [report via T.J. K.]
Norvin Green State Forest – Lake Sonoma and Manaticut Point
Moderate color change, still some green, and decent amount of leaf drop. [report via NJ HIKING]
Route 287 corridor from Rt 78 to Wanaque – low to moderate color change. [report via NJ HIKING]
Harriman State Park, NY along I 87
Starting to look colorful. Low to moderate color.
Catskill Park, NY – Balsam Mountain and Belleayre Mountain
It’s just starting to peak in Catskills. Still lots of green in the forest with color in the canopy. [reports via Gone Hikin']
10/1/13 – NJH Road Trip report:
Maine: Acadia National Park … Low.
Maine: 95 South … low to moderate
Massachusetts/Cape Cod … none to low
Connecticut/New York: Rt. 95 corridor … none to low
New Jersey: Parkway from NY border to Central NJ … none to low
09/29/13 – Long Pond Ironworks State Park – Monksville Reservoir
Low – moderate color change. [report via Gone Hikin']
09/28/13 – Round Valley Reservoir
Low color. [report via T.J. K.]
09/25/13 – Sussex County
The maples are starting to turn. [report via Paul]
9/8/13 – Cheesequake State Park
Slight pops of mild color. [report via NJ HIKING]
9/7/13 – Boonton area
Some color change starting already. [report via Bob S.]
9/6/13 – Sterling Forest State Park, NY – Wildcat Mountain
In just a few places, some leaves starting to change on a tree here and there. [report via Gone Hikin']
|Sources for tracking fall color in New Jersey and the Northeast|
|The Weather Channel – New Jersey Color Report and the Northeast Coverage Map|
|The Weather Channel – Northeast Coverage Map|
|Yankee Foliage - Very detailed map of the Northeast including NJ (move map to see)|
|The Foliage Network – Northeast Reports, updated weekly|
|U.S Forest Service – Eastern Region Reports|
|NorthEast Foliage Network – Web cams, links, weather, past seasons|
|NJ Division of Parks and Forestry – Map showing usual times for change across NJ|
|Colorful Fall Species Chart - Identify the yellows, reds and oranges of Autumn in NJ.|
|Touring New Jersey’s Fall Foliage – Suggested routes to explore NJ in the fall.|
|1-800-VISIT-NJ – Fall Foliage/Events|
|Maine / New Hampshire / Vermont / Massachusetts / Rhode Island|
|New England Normal Peak Times – Map showing range for normal peak color|
|Maine Fall Foliage – Foliage report and map for Maine|
|Fall in Maine – Trip ideas and driving routes|
|New Hampshire Fall Foliage – Interactive foliage map for New Hampshire|
|Vermont Fall Foliage – Foliage map and reports for Vermont|
|Foliage Vermont – Animated foliage predictor and foliage maps show the usual progression of leaf color in Vermont.|
|Stowe, Vermont Foliage – Foliage report and suggested foliage drives|
|Massachusetts Fall Foliage – Foliage timetable and foliage report for Massachusetts|
|Rhode Island Fall Foliage – Foliage resources for Rhode Island|
|Connecticut / New York / Pennsylvania
|Connecticut Fall Foliage – Interactive foliage coverage map based on historical averages|
|Connecticut Start Of Peak Foliage Map – Foliage range map for Connecticut|
|New York State Fall Foliage – Foliage report and map for New York State|
|Pocono Mountains, PA – Foliage maps and reports for the Poconos|
|Pennsylvania – Regional info, drives, things to do and Weekly Fall Foliage Report|
|Pennsylvania – Weekly Fall Foliage Map and Reports – current color map|
|Fall in Pennsylvania – Driving tours and average peak times|
|For the rest of United states, check out our Fall Foliage Reports page.|
Best Fall Foliage Hikes in New Jersey
For the best results, pick a hike with a view from a summit of surrounding peaks or over a large expanse of forest. Views over a lake/pond will reflect the foliage.
- Delaware Water Gap: Mt. Tammany, Sunfish Pond, Mt. Minsi (PA side)
- Four Birds Trail and the Hawk Watch in Farny State Park
- Pyramid Mountain – Any loop in the park, there are several overlooks
- Hawk Rock Viewpoint in Ramapo Valley County Reservation
- Monument Trail – High Point State Park
- Surprise Lake via Bearfort Ridge or via State Line Trail
- Terrace Pond South – Foliage reflects nicely in the pond
- Hacklebarney State Park and Black River County Park – The Black River provides a nice backdrop for fall color
Hiking is wonderful in any season, but nothing compares to walking in crisp autumn air with leaves crunching underfoot, and an explosion of color all around.
Leaves will change color starting from Maine and working their way south. Leaves could be past peak in North Jersey and still barely changed in South Jersey… use the info here to get in as much color as you can, it doesn’t last long!
While there are average times for color change, it really depends on several variables like temperature and rainfall. Trees at higher elevations turn color before ones at lower elevations.
2012 NJ Fall Foliage Report Archive
––Photos and reports posted in our Fall Foliage in New Jersey – 2012 forum.
10/29/12 – Hurricane Sandy will likely put an abrupt end to the foliage season in New Jersey and the surrounding areas.
Hacklebarney State Park – Peak to past-peak color, with significant leaf drop.
Route 287 and 206 corridor from New Brunswick to Chester - also at peak to past-peak. [Reports via NJ HIKING]
Henry Hudson Trail South (Aberdeen to Marlboro) – Peak color, lots of leaf drop. [Report via Daniela W.]
Jenny Jump S.P. is great right now. Great deals on cabin overnights. Allamuchy = nice foliage, streamside pink sumac. [Report via Dan L.]
Terrace Pond, Wawayanda S.P: High to peak color on the trails, with a good amount of leaf cover on the trail itself. Peak to past-peak color from the viewpoint and at the pond area.
Route 287 corridor from New Brunswick to West Milford: High color
Maurice River Bluffs/Southern New Jersey: It seems that the rain on Friday really pushed the color changing along and things seemed a lot more colorful this weekend then they had been. MaysLanding/Ocean City area seemed a lot further ahead in terms of changing color.
Turnpike from exit 8A – 6: High color, 50-60% changed; from 6 – 3: Moderate – high, 40-50% color change. [Reports via NJ HIKING]
Delaware Water Gap – Mt. Tammany: Anything out I-80 was peak and stunning today (Allamuchy, Jenny Jump). Mt. Tammany is past peak and there is a lot of leaf drop but Dunnfield Creek still has some green. Views from Mt. Tammany are at peak. [Report via Daniela W.]
Sussex Branch Trail in Allamuchy Mtn State Park: Beautiful lake reflections and mountains that look like lollipop flavors. [Report via Dan L.]
Sunrise Mountain, Stokes State Forest: High color to approaching peak, though there is still a good amount of green. As in recent years, the color isn’t turning all at once for a somewhat mixed result at viewpoints. On the trails, a moderate amount of leaf drop. [Report via NJ HIKING]
Route 287 and 206 corridor from New Brunswick to Stokes:
- Route 287 in New Brunswick to Route 206: low color change, 20-30%.
- Route 206 through the Chester area, mixed green with 30-40% change.
- Route 206 through Andover, moderate, 40%
- Route 206 near Lake Owassa and approaching the park: 40-50%
Catskills, NY Platte Clove to Overlook Mountain – Peaking now, or past peak depending on the elevation. Harriman/ Sterling was becoming colorful driving by up I-87 [Report via Daniela W.]
Watchung Reservation: Color was minimal with many early, dried-out leaves falling. These leaves were ‘golden’, but only so because of leaf scortch due to lack of adequate rains this summer. [Report via Linda F.]
Route 1/295/55, and Route 54 in Buena to 206 to Bordentown: Slight blush of low, mild color. [Report via NJ HIKING]
Stokes State Forest: The AT in Stokes is still mostly green. Just a few touches of color looking west from the peaks. A few more days and the colors will start to come out. [Report via Paul]
Sourland Mountain Preserve – color change has begun. [Report via Linda F.]
Cushetunk Mountain Nature Preserve and Round Valley Reservoir: Some color on the north side of Cushetunk Mountain in the preserve, with color starting on the other side of the mountain around Round Valley Reservoir. [Report via Daniela W.]
Wildcat Ridge WMA and the Hawkwatch in Morris County; Rt 287 corridor from New Brunswick to Rt 80: Low color change with mostly green, some pops of vibrant yellow and red. Some leaf drop along the trails. [Report via NJ HIKING]
Lehigh Gap Nature Center in Palmerton, Pa.: Smattering of color, llittle punches of deep ruby and a splotch of burnt orange-tinged leaves here and there dotting nearby hillsides. [Report via Linda F.]
2011 NJ Fall Foliage Report Archive
––Photos and reports posted in our Fall Foliage in New Jersey – 2011 forum.
11/13/11 – New Jersey is past peak but there are trees with color still, mostly from central to southern NJ.
11/6/11 – Green Lane Park, Montgomery County, PA. – 50% peak, 50% past/leaf drop. Most of the color was found in the woods on the trails, while areas in the open like along water or the roads were past peak or dropped entirely.
New Jersey Turnpike south and southeastern PA along the PA Turnpike still had nice color. The color faded and leaves dropped the further west we traveled along the PA pike.
10/30/11 - High color can still be found in central and southern NJ. North is mostly past peak, with some peak areas. Plus, the storm knocked a lot of leaves down early in all areas.
Bearfort Ridge: Surprise Lake, State Line Trail/Ernest Walter, AT North into NY – Peak color to just past peak; mostly nice yellows/golds but also some leaf drop/bare trees.
Stokes State Forest – It was a mixed bag. Where the Appalachian Trail runs along the ridge (Culvers Gap to Brink Road) between 90 – 100% leaf drop, then the lone, random, just-starting-to-turn tree. At lower elevations like Shay Road, Dimon Road, Stoll Trail, just past peak. Lots of leaf drop but also many leaves still hanging on but not for long. [Report via Gone Hikin']
Wildcat Ridge WMA, Four Birds Trail southern section. Leaves at or post peak, lots of leaves down already. [Report via TJ K.]
Audubon trails in Sparta near the Ogdensburg line – Foliage was beautiful, but clearly just at or slightly past peak. [report via Ted D.]
Poconos, PA – Peak, if not slightly past peak foliage. [report via Jennifer P.]
French Creek & Ridley Creek in PA. Not quite peak, but enough contrast to provide some beautiful color. Lots of yellows/golds. [report via Linda F.]
Buttermilk Falls and Mahlon Dickerson Reservation: moderate to high color [report via Ted D.]
Norvin Green - Hewitt Butler Trail South to Osio Rock Loop. Low to Moderate Color. [report via TJ K.]
Jenny Jump State Park - Moderate color with mostly yellow and rust orange, still somewhat muted. Still a lot of green, but also a decent amount of leaf drop. Improving color on routes 287N, RT 206N and 80W on the way to the Gap area.
Ramapo Valley County Reservation area. Decent color at around 50% changed.
Catskills, NY – Great color, peaking. [both reports via Gone Hikin']
Mt. Minsi, Delaware Water Gap, PA side. Low to moderate color, with a lot of green still. Rt. 80, and Rt. 206 through Chester low color, a lot of green but also trees with leaf drop. Colors generally muted and not vibrant.
Wawayanda State Park - low to moderate color. [via photo from GetOutsideNJ]
2010 NJ Fall Foliage Report Archive
––Photos and reports posted in our Fall Foliage in New Jersey – 2010 forum.
11/14/10 – Harriman State Park, NY. Still some fading color, decent
amount of leaf drop. Some color along the Parkway heading north.
11/6/10 – Southern New Jersey still has peak color, with about 30% leaf drop. (Turnpike south from 8A down, into Cumberland County -Vineland/Millville)
11/5/10 – Apshawa Preserve, West Milford: pops of color but mostly fading, 70% leaf drop. Along the 287 corridor: mostly fading oranges and reds, 60-70% leaf drop.
10/31/10 – Cooper Mill/Black River in Chester Twp: brilliant peak color mixed with about 60% leaf drop.
10/24/10 - Most of New Jersey is now at peak or almost peak color.
10/23/10 – Delaware Water Gap, Mt. Tammany, Sunfish Pond: high to peak color mixed with some leaf drop and green leaves. Rt. 206 corridor through Chester has some nice high to peak color, but also bare trees in areas. Peak color is appearing throughout southern Jersey as well (reported from Cumberland County).
10/17/10 – Delaware Water Gap, Mt. Tammany: Mix of moderate to high color change viewing the mountains, but also still some just turning or still green; mainly yellows inside the trails but also some leaf drop due to the wind on Saturday.
10/16/10 – Moderate color in central Jersey at Cheesequake State Park, Matawan.
10/13/10 – Some low color change spotted in the Apshawa Preserve, West Milford. In southern Jersey, some color pops spotted in the Edwin B. Forsythe NWR.
10/10/10 – Low to moderate color change at Ramapo Mountain State Forest, and along route 287 from New Brunswick north to the park.
In NY, Minnewaska has high color, and should be at peak next weekend.
10/08/10 – Cheesequake State Park, Matawan. Some pops of color amid mostly