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Michigan fall colors are behind schedule - Sept. 29 foliage update

Only the higher elevations of the Upper Peninsula are showing anything worthwhile
Fall Colors 2020
Posted at 6:15 PM, Sep 29, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-29 19:50:39-04

LANSING, Mich. — In this week's fall color update we don't have much new to report from last week - strange! Usually this time of the year the colors up north are moving along fast enough to miss if you're too late. This year, they are changing very slowly and are now well behind schedule.

The Upper Peninsula was turning quickly as of last week's update on the 22nd. Now, on the 29th, we are only seeing a slight amount more color and mainly in the higher elevations. Nothing is peak as of yet, but some additional areas are now showing moderate color. I still wouldn't make plans to hit the road just yet. Unless you go all the way into the Huron Mountains or the Keweenaw, you might disappointed. A lot of the lower elevations and lakeshore areas up north are still very green. These areas are moderate color are not only small in scale, but remote as well.

Here is a shot from my mom, Sandy Sugden, as of today from Lake of the Clouds in the Porkies.

Lake of the Clouds on September 29th
Lake of the Clouds on September 29th

As you can see there colors are just starting to turn. They will most likely make great progress by next weekend!

We can also look at the latest satellite image from NASA of the Upper Peninsula.

NASA Satellite Image
NASA Satellite Image

You'll notice some orange / brown hues to the trees west of Marquette and in the highest elevation of the Keweenaw Peninsula, but that's it.

Here's the Lower Peninsula:

NASA Satellite Image
NASA Satellite Image

As you can see the farm fields are turning brown to the south and in the Thumb, but that's it. Trees are nearly all still green.

Fall color map
Fall color map

You have to go really far to see anything substantial. Certainly behind schedule since October 1st is in two days!

Now, with the numerous frost / freeze conditions the state has seen, it is likely this map advances quite a bit by our update next week. We are consistently looking at cold nights coming our way which is wonderful news for those vibrant oranges and reds!

Getting bright colors
Getting bright colors

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