Northwest GA Specific (Ridge and Valley/Cumberland Plateau):

Foliage color change is ending in NW GA as a large percentage of trees have lost their leaves. The few leaves remaining are showing dull colors of brown, yellow, and red. Chestnut oak, white oak, and red oak are among the few species retaining leaves contributing to arrays of brown and yellow.  Select few maples are still showing some vivid colors of yellow and orange.

Overall color intensity will likely decrease in the coming week as leaves continue to drop.

Species specifics:

  • Dogwood – brown with significant leaf loss
  • Birch – fading to brown and yellow
  • Yellow-poplar – most of the leaves have dropped.
  • Redbud – fading to yellow
  • Sourwood – most of the leaves have dropped.  Remaining leaves dull red
  • Sumac –dull reds with few leaves remaining
  • Maple – dull yellow or red
  • Birch – dull browns and yellows
  • Oak – brown and yellow with occasional maroon
  • Blackgum – leaf loss
  • Sassafras – dull brown
  • Sweetgum – maroon and brown
  • Hickory –remaining leaves of yellow and brown

Estimated percentage of color change from green to date:  99% 

Scenic drive: 

Take Hwy 136 to the top of Lookout Mountain from I-75. Turn right onto Hwy 189 (or continue on 136 and turn right to go to Cloudland Canyon). Follow Hwy 189 to Sunset Rock, Point Park, or Rock City. Drop down into Chattanooga via Ochs Hwy / 58. Then take Hwy 193 back to 136.


In mid to higher elevations (2000’ +) the majority of species have surpassed peak and only a few are exhibiting color. Below that, roadsides and field perimeters are good places to see maples, oaks, beech, sweetgum, and hickories still showing great colors.

Species-specific in the piedmont; below 1500’ 

  • Dogwood – primarily complete
  • Birch –River Birch Poor
  • Yellow-poplar – Fair
  • Sourwood – Light red
  • Sumac – Bright to deep reds.
  • Maple – Bright red to yellow
  • Oak – Red oaks are brownish red to deep red White oak yellow/brown /red
  • Black gum –Red/ Fading
  • Sweetgum Purple to Yellow and some Red
  • Hickory- Yellow/ Bright Yellow

Percentage of color change from green to date: 100%.

It has been a good season, with some time left to enjoy pops of color within the piedmont region. Peak has come and gone for the higher elevations.

Metro Atlanta and beyond:

While traditional locations in higher elevations have diminished, don’t overlook the views on daily commutes, backyards, and around town. Many of the parks and other recreation areas are available and can give fabulous viewing without having to go far from home.

If you do want to hit the road, the Lake Russell Recreation area, with a 100-acre lake surrounded by biking and hiking trails, provides spectacular foliage.