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Weekend features peak leaf peeping time around WNY

Get your cameras - or cell phones - ready.

The rain will end by Saturday afternoon, as nature's version of a color rush sweeps across Western New York.

I Love New York's Fall Foliage Report says this will be the best weekend to experience the colorful splendor of autumn in metro Buffalo and throughout most of Western New York.


Near peak to peak conditions are happening now across most of Western New York, according to the weekly I Love New York Fall Foliage Report.

The best places to be will be Niagara and Chautauqua counties, and at Letchworth State Park, according to the report.

That's where the peak conditions are reported this week.

Chautauqua County spotters told the report that near "100 percent color change" with "brilliant orange, red and yellow leaves" can be found.

[Gallery: Fall foliage around Western New York]

About 60 percent change "with a wide range of fall colors" is expected across Niagara County, including Niagara Falls.

That's some pretty good timing for those who have booked one of the "special fall colour tours" aboard the Niagara Belle. Departing from Queenston, Ont. on the Lower Niagara River, the 2 hour, 15 minute tours are offered by Niagara Sunset Cruises at 11;30 a.m. every Saturday in October and feature "a harvest-inspired lunch," historical discussion and kids' activities.

Meanwhile down in Erie County, near peak colors are forecast this weekend with about half the trees in color change.

"Look for lots of average to bright leaves of yellow-gold with touches of red, orange and purple," the report states about Erie County.

To the east in Wyoming County, spotters reported there's a nearly three-quarters mix of yellows, reds and oranges amid some remaining green leaves and peak or near peak conditions are forecast there.

As for areas like Allegany State Park, and some spots in Cattaraugus County, leaves peaked last weekend and are reported to already be past the peak conditions for color.

Don't let that dissuade you from taking a drive on a sunny Sunday afternoon, however.

"Look for 80 percent color change and lots of yellow, orange and red leaves of average brilliance," according to the foliage report. "The park will still have some trees in the process of changing this weekend, and it should be another excellent weekend of fall colors."

Raindrops will finally start tapering off by late Saturday morning, according to the National Weather Service forecast.

The forecast shows Sunday will be the best of the weekend days, with windy conditions both days expected to create a flurry of falling leaves.

Saturday will remain overcast, damp and cool around the Buffalo metro area.

Daytime high temperatures Saturday won't make it out of the 40s. There will be gusty northwest winds keeping wind chills at or below 40 degrees for the entire day, forecasts show.


Chilly weather won't just be a Buffalo thing Saturday. Temperatures in the 40s Saturday afternoon are forecast all the way down to the Gulf states. (

On Sunday, temperatures will rebound into the upper 50s in Buffalo, which is average for the date.

The forecast shows some sunshine will also return, but it'll stay a little breezy with west winds gusting near 30 mph.






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