See Minnesota fall colors on DNR Web site
Drought conditions and stressed trees could mean a short, unimpressive fall color season in some areas of Minnesota this year.
Recent rain may have been enough to save some of the state's autumn color displays.
To keep tabs on the progress of the fall color season, the Department of Natural Resources' Division of Parks and Recreation has launched Fall Color Reports 2007 online at www.dnr.state.mn.us.
Reports contain extras such as changing fall colors among the native grasses and wildflowers, information about birds, butterflies and other wildlife that are migrating or preparing for winter, and a listing of the berries, nuts and fruits that are ripe for harvesting.
The site also features photos of the changing fall colors and information about autumn events in and around the state parks and recreation areas.
Online photo galleries will provide a first-hand look at the autumn scene in various parks.
Courtland Nelson, director of the DNR Division of Parks and Recreation, said "Since all 66 state parks and six state recreation areas are open to the public year-round, people have the opportunity for recreation and relaxation in all seasons."
Nelson cited another major factor that helps boost visitation "Campers especially appreciate the lower bug levels in fall."
Nelson also recommends a midweek visit to state parks this fall. He said "If you want to spend a more quiet time in the park, come during the week if you can. During the week, camping is more available and you likely will not need a reservation."
Individuals who do not have access to the fall color reports online can call the DNR Information Center at 651.296.6157 or 888.646.6367. For an audio report, call 888.868.7476.