With less leaves dropping, we may see more color changes for Spearfish Canyon

SPEARFISH, S.D. — It is officially fall, and it is likely the peak color will change in Spearfish Canyon this week.

Of all the places in the Canyon, the swath of trees near the hydroplant building at Devil’s Bathtub trailhead, the bowl at Savoy and Roughlock Falls are the closest to nearing peak color change, which is currently at 50%.

Friday is a windy day in Spearfish. It is disheartening to see leaf drop when we are nearing peak color change. Yet, science tells us it is not the wind making the leaves drop, it is the tree.

As the nights get longer and the days get shorter, a hormone is triggered in the Canyon’s birch and aspen that sends a chemical message to the leaves to drop.

A gust of wind may help the progress along, but wind is not the only factor.

Kimberly Talcott says she is taking solace in the fact that we are not quite at peak color change yet, and that means many of the leaves are not yet at their “drop” stage, and hopefully they will hang on.

Categories: Local News