It’s football time. It’s flannel season. And across our beautiful state, spectacular fall foliage is peaking! As we transition from the heat of summer days into the chilly days of fall, leaves throughout the state begin to put on their own show with breathtaking shades of yellow, red & orange. There are lots of ways to take in the colors in the Capital Region from hikes to driving tours and fall foliage cruises. Don’t wait too long to get out there; the peak season will be over soon. We compiled a list here to help you get started!
Great Local Spots for Leaf Peeping
Sit back and relax while your Captain takes you on a scenic 1.5 hour cruise around Saratoga Lake and Fish Creek aboard our 50’ launch “General Schuyler”. See Saratoga’s best kept secret and learn the rich history of Saratoga Lake on this narrated cruise. This cruise is great way to enjoy the fall foliage around the lake and fresh Saratoga Apples are provided after Sept 16th!
It’s the perfect place to take in a little history and stunning views. Pick up a park map and brochure at the entrance to use on a self-guided driving tour of the battlefield from April through November. You can interact with the friendly park Rangers, touch real cannons used in the Revolutionary War, and truly immerse yourself in the historical experience.
The land is historical… and truly breathtaking. Trace through the soldiers’ footsteps and prepare to be in awe of your surroundings. It begins at the scenic Freeman Farm Overlook which provides a stunning view of the tree line, hills and ravines, that has not changed much since 1777.
Open 9:00am to 5:00pm daily
closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day
Driving Tour Road
Open April 1 to November 30, weather permitting
- Labor Day through EST Change: 9:00 am to 5:00 pm
- EST Change through November 30: 9:00 am to 4:00 pm
Please call the Information Desk for details: 518.670.2985.
Hadley Mountain is the second highest peak in Saratoga County, the top provides expansive views of the area’s foliage. Also, there’s a fire tower at the summit. If you’re feeling adventurous, climb to the top to get an even better look at the mountains in the Adirondack Park.
- From the North: Crane Mountain and a few of the Adirondack High Peaks
- From the South: Great Sacandaga Reservoir, the Mohawk Valley, the Helderberg and Catskill Mountains, and fire tower on Spruce Mountain
- From the West: Spruce Mountain and various forrests
- From the East: Hudson River, the Moon, Three Sisters, the Willsboro Mountain Range, Lake Champlain, and the Green Mountains in Vermont
Leaf Peeping Day Trips
There’s no better season to take a day trip than fall! There are an abundance of amazing leaf peeping spots in driving range from Saratoga Springs. Here’s a few you might want to try:
Take a drive south along the Hudson River for great foliage views. If you missed your chance to catch the leaves during their peak in the Saratoga and Adirondack area, you may be able to see them in the Catskills, as they typically turn a little later down in that direction. The Catskills Forest Preserve is home to 300,000 acres of forests adorned with cliffs, fire towers, and waterfalls. Your options for leaf peeping in the Catskills are essentially endless!
Head west to scenic Cooperstown for a perfect leaf peeping day trip. Take a ride down Route 31 or Route 80 and for plenty of opportunities to catch amazing fall foliage from e the rolling hills to the famous Sleeping Lion Mountain.
The special chill in the air, a glass of great cider at the Fly Creek Cider Mill, The Farmers’ Museum Harvest Festival, Cooperstown Pumpkinfest, local tastes of the season at the Cooperstown Farmers’ Market, the rustling of the leaves along one of America’s most beautiful Main Streets and the strength of community pride at local fairs are just a few of the reasons to visit Cooperstown during the fall foliage season.
The countryside with its newly colored mountains, hills and wide open land — along with beautiful Otsego Lake — are every bit as scenic as the much heralded Vermont and New Hampshire with slightly fewer crowds!
The Walkway Over the Hudson State Historic Park provides ample opportunities for leaf peeping.
Look way down at Walkway over the Hudson State Historic Park (845-454-9649, walkway.org). Abandoned in 1974, the former Poughkeepsie-Highland Railroad Bridge reopened to pedestrians in 2009 as the world’s longest elevated pedestrian bridge. But the mile and a quarter length doesn’t fascinate nearly as much as the 212-foot height. Free admission, but parking costs $5.
Our Scenic Skyride features a six-passenger detachable chairlift. The state-of-the-art lift will take you in comfort to the 3,200-foot summit of Hunter Mountain. From there, you can enjoy amazing views of the high peaks of the northern Catskills. On a clear day, in the distance, you’ll see the Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts and the Green Mountains of Vermont beyond New York’s beautiful Catskill Mountain peaks that surround you.Enjoy amazing views of the high peaks of the northern Catskill Mountains.
Location: 64 Klein Ave | Hunter, NY 12442
The peak period for foliage varies throughout New York State. Typically, areas further north begin to peak during the last week of September and then move along south. However, mother nature cannot always be predicted! Here’s a general guide for planning.
Peak Report by Region
- Adirondack Mountains & Catskills: fall foliage peak last 2 weeks of September into the first week of October
- Chautauqua / Allegheny: fall foliage peak last week in September and 1st week of October
- Leatherstocking & Finger Lakes Region: fall foliage first 2 weeks in October
- 1000 Islands, Niagara Falls & Northern Finger Lakes: fall foliage peak 2nd and 3rd weeks of October
- Hudson Valley & Capital Region: fall foliage peak 2nd and 3rd weeks of October
- Southern Hudson Valley: fall foliage foliage peak last 2 weeks in October
- NYC & Long Island: fall foliage foliage peak last week in October and first week in November