New England Foliage Locations & Equipment

Started Aug 2, 2013 | Discussions thread
bflood Senior Member • Posts: 1,635
Re: New England Foliage Locations & Equipment

Timing is everything when it comes to fall foliage. The start and peak of the foliage progress from north to south as the days get shorter in the fall.  When I was growing up in southern Vermont (Manchester), the rule of thumb for the best weekend for color was the weekend on or before Columbus Day, but the timing of the color is influenced by the year's weather and by elevation. I went to southern VT last year for the first week of October and I missed the peak - it happened a week or so earlier. Based on my experience, I think your itinerary may be too far north for the 1st week of October, and you'd be better off moving your trip forward into September, or aiming your October plans farther south. Even though I was late last year, the color in southern VT is so good that it was still excellent. The big risk is that once the color passes its peak, the leaves become more vulnerable to the weather - the color can end abruptly with the first good rain or wind following the peak - everything will be on the ground.  Based on this, I find it to be a bit safer to miss the peak by being a little early rather than late.

Use Google/Bing/etc to do a search for fall foliage reports. The web sites that allow users to post their findings probably all still have last year's post on them, so you can read through them to get an idea of how the color went by location.

Reservations - the more modestly priced accommodations can fill up early, so making some choices and making reservations is a very good idea. Don't plan of foraging for a room as you travel unless you have a large budget. In my experience, the only places that will have open rooms for walk-in customers will be the $400-500 a night places. YMMV

I haven't used any of the cameras/lenses you listed as candidates, but I honestly can't recall anyone in any of the forums I read ever complaining that any modern DSLR is incapable of getting a good photo. The range of focal lengths you listed seem quite appropriate, so I think any of them will be satisfactory. I suggest you choose one and rent it a bit early, and spend the extra time shooting as much as you can, fooling around with the camera's options, so you won't have to use your on-the-scene foliage shooting time to learn the camera. One feature to check out is the self-timer. If you want to shoot on a tripod (I do all the time) but the tripod may not be that robust, set the self-timer to a short delay time (my cameras allow 2 seconds) and shoot on the tripod using the self-timer. The hands-off nature of the shot can make up for a lighter weight tripod.

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