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The Mono-logue » Blog Archive » Fall colors are glorious at Mono Lake right now

Fall colors are glorious at Mono Lake right now

September 29th, 2016 by Nora, Lead Naturalist Guide
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Fall is officially here! Crisp air, blue skies, and multicolored aspen groves bring visitors from all over to enjoy the Mono Basin and soak up the beauty of the area as the aspen trees turn from glittering green to gold, clementine, and crimson.

Green and golden aspens at Parker Lake, September 29, 2016. Photo courtesy of Mary Ljung.

Green and golden aspens at Parker Lake, September 29, 2016. Photo courtesy of Mary Ljung.

Why do leaves change color in fall? The short story is that after spending all summer photosynthesizing and storing sugars for new growth next spring, leaves eventually get blocked from transporting nutrients in and out towards the branches and buds, and the chlorophyll (the green pigment that is essential for photosynthesis) degrades, so yellow and orange pigments that have been masked in the leaf all summer are revealed. Sugars that are trapped in the leaf trigger the production of a red pigment in some leaves. How cool is that?

Three hues of aspen in all its glory. All photos by Nora Livingston.

Three hues of aspen in all its glory, September 22, 2016. Photo by Nora Livingston.

The Mono County fall color guide is a good place to check which places in the area have good fall color. Right now they’re reporting peak or near-peak fall color at Parker Lake, Walker Lake, Tioga Pass, and Virginia Lakes. Autumn is a very busy time in the Eastern Sierra, so if you explore these areas, please practice Leave No Trace principles to protect these groves for future enjoyment.

A glowing peaking hillside.

A high-country hillside glows on September 22, 2016. Photo by Nora Livingston.


3 Responses to “Fall colors are glorious at Mono Lake right now”

  1. avatar Brooke Vee Says:

    I would like to submit photos after my trip to Mono County this Oct. for the Mono-Logue Calendar. Who do I send it to?
    When is the next deadline?

  2. avatar Elin, Communications Coordinator Says:

    Hi Brooke, the deadline to submit to the Mono Lake Calendar will be November 30, 2016. We’re very close to having the submission guidelines ready, and I’ll send you an email when they have been posted. That’s great that you want to submit!

  3. avatar Brooke Vee Says:

    Thank you. I look forward to sending you my best photos from this October, 2016.