Autumn Leaf Splendor
Watch the Colors Turn
Photo by John Hubbell
Whether you turn to the north, south, east or west, there’s no prettier time to visit Trinity County than in the fall when you’ll be treated to spectacular displays of fall color around every bend in the road or trail.
Following the first frost, native dogwood, maples, oaks, cottonwoods and ferns splash assorted hues of red, orange and sunny yellow against an evergreen forest backdrop.
The best time for leaf peepers is generally from the middle of October to the end of November before the first snowfall. Summer heat has passed. Daytime temperatures remain fair though nights are chilly. Most campgrounds stay open through October.
Local communities scattered along the scenic state highways 299, 3 and 36 host a number of fall harvest events and festivals during that time, inviting visitors to come for the day or enjoy overnight accommodations.
Officially designated by the U.S. Forest Service as the Trinity Scenic Byway, Highway 299 provides some of the most accessible leaf viewing as it winds through the Trinity River gorge. There are day use areas along the route to pull off and enjoy a picnic. Side trips up Canyon Creek or the North Fork are also worth the effort.
There’s also the designated Trinity Heritage National Scenic Byway which is Highway 3 heading north from Weaverville where motorists encounter vistas of fall color along with glimpses of Trinity Lake and forested slopes rising into the Trinity Alps Wilderness Area.
Highway 3 also heads south to Highway 36 that takes travelers either east down through the oak woodlands to Red Bluff or west to Fortuna over South Fork Mountain and through the coastal range, passing through many elevations and vegetation types in full autumn glory.