Maybe you noticed leaves on the poplar in your yard have already turned yellow.
And you've spied a bit of red in the some of the sourwoods and dogwoods while driving down the road. Those early signs mean, of course, that leaf-peeping season is near.
Still, you've got time to make plans.
"Some of the darker greens are becoming lighter," said Table Rock State Park interpreter Scott Stegenga. "I can see here up on the slope and there's some change, but it's going to be (about) a week before we see a whole lot. ... Probably around Halloween, and then it should be pretty good."
Stegenga suggested using Table Rock's Web cam to see when the colors start to change.
Or make plans to journey to other state parks in the Upstate and immerse yourself in the annual display. That's the recommendation of Kenneth Reed, a state park employee who along with fellow staffer Gwen Davenport toured the area in late September to find locations for avid leaf watchers.
For Reed, the Upstate parks were a real find.
"Jones Gap is great," he said. "And the Caesars Head overlook is great, too, very accessible for anyone."
Reed confessed to "not being much of a hiker," but even he managed the roughly 4-mile round-trip trek to the Raven Cliff Falls overlook for a look.
"That was definitely worth it," he said. "That should be on everyone's list when the leaves change."
Other must-sees, Reed said, are: Jumping Off Rock in the Jocassee Gorges, Lake Jocassee, Table Rock Park, Oconee State Park and Paris Mountain State Park.
Reed and Davenport took videos and photos of their travels and posted them on the S.C. State Parks' Facebook site.
FIND FALL COLORS
- Download a guide to recommended spots to see the Upstate's best fall colors at southcarolinaparks.com/files/State%20Parks/Fall%20color%20tour09.pdf
- View a constantly updated national map to see when fall foliage is hitting its peak in South Carolina or wherever you might travel: weather.com/maps/activity/fallfoliage/index_large.html
- Read fall foliage updates at Table Rock State Park at: southcarolinaparks.com/beautiful-places/fall_foliage/fall_foliage_updates.aspx. Or take a look at the park's Web cam to judge for yourself when fall colors are ready for viewing: southcarolinaparks.com/beautiful-places/webcams/table_rock_webcam.aspx
FALL COLOR HIKES
Paris Mountain State Park hosts a leisurely walk 1-3 p.m. Saturday to Mountain Lake for those interested in feasting their eyes on the colors of fall reflected in the lake's calm waters. The park's interpretive naturalist will help visitors identify leaves and investigate reasons for their colors.
The program fee is $5 per person, and the admission fee is waived. Meet at the Sulphur Springs Parking Area. Register: (864) 244-5565 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Table Rock State Park hosts a guided fall color walk 2-3:15 p.m. Sunday on a section of an old trail along Pinnacle Lake. Insights about seasonal changes within the forest ecosystem will be shared along the trail.
The fee is $5. Information: (864) 878-9813