2023 Fall Foliage Prediction Map
This 2023 Fall Foliage Map serves as a planning guide to the annual progressive changing of the leaves.
While no tool can be 100% accurate, this is meant to help you better plan your trips
to have the best opportunity of catching peak color for Fall 2023.
2023 Fall Color Forecast for the Blue Ridge Mountains,
by week, starting in late September
September 25 - October 2
At the highest elevations, close to 6,000 feet, spotty and muted color will begin to appear. The views from these locations will be mostly green at this time, due to the areas viewed from here are ata lower elevations. Areas that turn early in this date and elevation range include primarily Graveyard Fields and Rough Ridge, both located off The Blue Ridge Parkway.
October 2 - 9
Peak time for areas above 5,000 feet. This would include: Clingmans Dome, Grandfather Mountain, Mount Mitchell, Waterrock Knob, and Graveyard Fields. Also included are the higher elevations of The Blue Ridge Parkway (between Asheville and Cherokee) and Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
October 9 - 16
Peak time for elevations from 4,000 - 5,000 feet. This would include almost all Blue Ridge Parkway locations and majority of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park as well. Included in this elevation are the Boone, NC and Blowing Rock, NC areas. Be sure to visit Tweetsie Railroad for beautiful Fall Color fun!
October 16 - 23
Peak time for lower elevations, from 3,000 - 4,000 feet. This would include places like: Pisgah National Forest which includes Sliding Rock and Looking Glass Falls, Dill Falls, Wildcat Falls, and many other waterfalls. Other ares include Linville Gorge, Nantahala Gorge, Maggie Valley, and Cataloochee Valley.
October 23 - 30
Peak time for elevations from 2,000 feet - 3,000 feet. This would include: The cities of Asheville, Brevard, Waynesville, Cherokee, and many others. Places of interest include Dupont State Forest, Biltmore Estate, and Cades Cove.
October 30 - November 6
Please note, these timeframes are estimates based on prior years and current weather and soil conditions.
Actual peak times may vary some from this forecast.
Here is a quick cheat sheet of which leaves belong to which trees based on their fall color:
Tulip Poplar: golden yellow
Birch: bright yellow
Black Cherry: yellow
Dogwood: deep red
Sourwood: brick red
Shining Sumac: red
Oaks: red, brown, or russet
Sugar Maple: orange-red
Black Maple: glowing yellow
Red Maple: bright scarlet or orange