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Fall Foliage Report – November 4, 2021

Map showing foliage past peak to the west and peaking or nearing peak in the rest of the state

The fall foliage this year has been a moving target, and we find ourselves entering November with some lackluster conditions. We are generally seeing a pattern from western Garrett County in the past peak stage to lots of green with pockets of color in far eastern Maryland. With the recent wind and rain, we’re seeing an end to prime foliage colors in most of the state mainly because of leaf drop. Generally speaking, fall foliage seekers should go far north where there has been more change and your best bet will be along the Blue Ridge mountain range (Allegany, Washington, and Frederick counties).  It’s still a great time to enjoy the cooler weather outside as the leaves fall! We had lots of photo submissions this week from citizen forest watchers across our state so look to see what’s happening on the ground through their lenses.

“Autumn doesn’t
always promise that
winter will come, 
but she works hard 
until every colored leaf 
has reached its destination.”

– Terri Guillemets

Join us as we follow the transition each week with reports from our experts at our state forests and parks. This year for the first time, we welcome all of Maryland’s outdoor enthusiasts to send in photos capturing the beauty of the fall season. Please use the submission form to submit your entries directly to us. Your photo might be selected to appear in a future edition of the Fall Foliage Report!

Sign up to receive this report to your email inbox every week in fall.

Garrett County, Maryland

We are well past peak in Garrett. Melissa Nash – Forester/Garrett Project Manager, Forest Service

Washington County, Maryland

Fort Frederick State Park


Fort Frederick Picnic Area 11/3/2021

Fort Frederick picnic area, November 4, 2021
Check back each week, we’ll be posting an updated photo of this spot
so you can see the leaves changing week to week.

Golden tree at the park Fall trees at the park
Potomac River Fall tree in front of the fort wall

The week brought the first frost, some waterfowl, and more fall color! Bob Study – Fort Frederick State Park Complex

Cecil County, Maryland

Fair Hill Natural Resources Management Area

Field at Fair Hill stream running through the park

We are passing peak foliage this week at Fair Hill, but that just means all of the colors of an autumn palette can be seen in the trees along the banks of Big Elk Creek. Now is a great time to enjoy the cooler temperatures and take in the beauty of fall with a hike in the park. Ranger Diana Marsteller – Fair Hill NRMA, Maryland Park Service

Photo Submissions for the Week

We’d like to thank all the folks that continue to send in photos of fall scenes from around Maryland. Glimpses of fall and shorter days can be seen from all parts of the state thanks to your participation. Please send us your fall foliage photos, including the names of any tree species you spot, using our easy online form!

Click on photos for larger versions.

Upper Gunpowder Falls

Beth T. – Gunpowder Falls, Baltimore County

Jacqueline C. –
Monocacy River, Frederick County

Swallow Falls

Roger K. – Swallow Falls, Garrett County

Centennial Park

Lori C. – Centennial Park, Howard County

Centennial Park

Lori C. – Centennial Park, Howard County

Centennial Park

Lori C. – Centennial Park, Howard County

Some colors in Woodbine

John B. – Woodbine, Carroll County

Old barn in Northern Baltimore County

Beth T. – Northern Baltimore County 

Fall colors at Brighton Dam

Lori C. – Brighton Dam Recreation Area, Howard and Montgomery Counties


Bright yellows at Brighton Dam

Lori C. – Brighton Dam Recreation Area, Howard and Montgomery Counties

Oranges and yellows along Rt. 32

Gregory V. – Clarksville, Route 32, Howard County

Rainbow in West Friendship

Gregory V. – West Friendship, Howard County

Fall colors at Rocky Gap

Archie C. – Rocky Gap State Park, Allegany County

Fall Recreation Spotlight

Fall Colors Hike at Patapsco Valley State Park

Wednesday, November 10, 2021: 2 – 3 p.m.

Join us to enjoy the colors of autumn! Meet us at Park Headquarters to hike the 1.1 mi Ole Ranger Trail. We’ll get a chance to view the foliage and enjoy the beauty nature has to offer! Weather dependent.

Patapsco Valley State Park in the Fall

Photo: Andrew Rimel

Fall Foraging in Maryland’s Forests

Although the recent rainfall has not produced ideal results for fall foliage viewing, it has produced a windfall for our resident foragers! Wild mushrooms, like Chicken of the Woods, thrive in damp conditions. Chicken of the Woods is a shelf mushroom that grows on the wounds of living trees but can be found on some dead trees as well. It is easy to spot because of its orangish-yellow color and delicious to eat due to its firm texture. Check out foraging recipes submitted by your fellow Marylanders in DNR’s new online cookbook, Wild Maryland. You might just find a new favorite recipe for fall!

Chicken of the Woods

Photo: Stephen Badger 

Watch the sky

The evening of November 4 (and the morning of November 5) will be the new moon and perfect dark sky conditions. This is the best time to observe distant objects such as galaxies and star clusters because the moon will not be visible; it will be on the same side of the earth as the sun. The evening of November 4 and 5 you will see the Taurids Meteor Shower. It’s a minor meteor shower that produces 5-10 meteors per hour and you can look towards, you guessed it, Taurus in the night sky for the best viewing. On November 11 there will be a trio of celestial bodies to view: Saturn and Jupiter will be clustered together with a first quarter moon.

Taurids Meteor Shower

Photo: NASA

Photos of and information about pignut hickory