- Associated Press - Saturday, October 29, 2016

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) - After a lackluster start, the 2016 fall foliage season in New Jersey is picking up steam and some weather experts are optimistic that leaf watchers still have a good shot at catching a glimpse of vibrant colors in parts of the Garden State.

“Leaf peeping from this weekend through next weekend will overall be the best of the season,” said New Jersey State Climatologist David Robinson, who teaches at Rutgers University. “With some sunny days, it should be quite nice,” he told NJ.com (https://bit.ly/2f32mdB).

Although some meteorologists and park officials had predicted an early and lackluster foliage season back in September - saying the summer heat waves and serious drought conditions were causing leaves to drop before their leaves turn colorful - Robinson said the New Jersey foliage season simply got delayed by a few weeks.

Andy Mussoline, a senior meteorologist at AccuWeather, agrees the intense summer heat and dry spell pushed the timing of the foliage season back a bit in the Garden State, and he believes the colors on some trees have been diminished.

“If you look from afar, the overall color may appear more dull than if we were in a non-drought” situation, Mussoline said on Thursday. “It’s not one of those years that’s going down in the record books for fall foliage. But there’s no doubt there are some trees that look spectacular.”

In North Jersey, the foliage this week is near or past its peak colors, Mussoline said. In South Jersey, the leaves are still in the process of turning, and they’re getting a little push from Mother Nature.

“The chilly days and cold nights really help set the color for the trees,” the meteorologist said.


Information from: NJ Advance Media.

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