The near future affords a great opportunity to view the fall colors before the snow comes. During the past few weeks, I’ve compiled my favorite areas to watch nature’s fireworks.
- Mill Creek Road: Mill Creek Road is just around 30 minutes from College Place. There are plenty of trees and foliage changing into many beautiful colors. Be on the lookout for white-tailed deer.
Directions: From Myra Road, take Highway 12 east towards Lewiston. After about 5 miles, take a right turn onto Interchange Road, and then a left onto Mill Creek Road. Travel about 5 miles and enjoy the scenery!
- Tiger Canyon: For those who drive on Mill Creek Road but can’t get enough of the beautiful colors, continue to drive down Mill Creek Road for around 13 miles from Highway 12. Right before you hit the “Dead End” sign, take a right onto Tiger Canyon Road. Continue the climb up the canyon for around 7 miles and enjoy beautiful views, as well as the colorful trees. The best colors are at the top of the canyon.
- Harris Park: Harris Park is a beautiful area but suffered significant flood damage in 2020. It is still an excellent hiking spot and offers many opportunities to view the changing scenery. Travel south on College Avenue until you intersect with Highway 12. Make a right turn towards Milton-Freewater. Travel for around 7 miles through Milton-Freewater, then make a right turn onto Main Street. Then, make a slight right onto 15th Avenue, which turns into Walla Walla River Road. Continue for about 5 miles, then turn right onto South Fork Walla Walla River Road. Continue here for about 8 miles until you reach Harris Park.
- Joseph, OR: If you have a free Saturday and are up for some driving, Joseph, Oregon offers some amazing scenery as well as fall colors. It is around a 2 ½ hour drive, so be ready to spend some time and money on gas. There are many trails to explore; one of the best is the Ice Lake trail. Although it is a long day hike, the first stretch of the trail is full of aspens. Google “Ice Lake Trail” or “trails around Joseph, Oregon” for directions