Upstate New York specializes in fall colors, and best place to see them is atop Whiteface (Whiteface/Facebook)
For skiers and snowboarders, the first sign of winter comes when the leaves start to color up as the days get shorter and the temps begin to drop.
However, it’s still a couple of months away before the good stuff begins. And, the glory of the autumn colors – the reds and yellows in New England and the bright gold of the aspens in the west – shouldn’t be missed.
A number of resorts keep the bullwheels turning into the prime leef-peeping season. Here’s where you can get a gondola ride to enjoy the season’s best colors:
Whiteface. The Cloudsplitter Gondola takes 15 minutes to reach the summit of this upstate New York mountain. From there, a palette of multiple pigments spreads out to Lake Placid, Lake Champlain and the highest peaks in the state. Runs through Oct. 10.
Wildcat. Gondola runs to summit through Oct. 10, with stunning views of the changing leaves on Mount Washington, its forested shoulders and the valley below.
Stratton. Through Oct. 10, it’s a leisurely ride up to southern Vermont’s highest peak. From there, a four-state view unfolds with a 360-degree scenic of fall’s colorful symphony.
Canyons. Miners in the 19th century deforested much of the area, and the aspens were the first to return. Get a full-course helping of aspen golds and the occasional reds riding the Red Pine into the forests above. Runs through Oct. 23.
Heavenly. In the fall, the mountains that circle Lake Tahoe unveil pockets of gold aspens and red oaks as they head into winter. Running through Oct. 25, the Heavenly Gondola whisks you right out of town to mid-mountain. From there, relax on the Observation Deck and soak in the views.