FINDING FABULOUS FALL FOLIAGE... out in a canyon, along the ridge of a peak, or by a river? That's fairly easy, if you know where to look for golden leaves around the Golden State, and when to go. But seeing a splendid, branch-beautiful display of autumnal color in a town that feels as though it might have sprung fully formed from a snow globe, perhaps, or at least the pages of a photography book is a little more challenging. But such picturesque villages do exist in California, with one of the most strollable and history-richest located near the northern reaches of Gold Country, in the Sierra foothills.
IT'S NEVADA CITY... we swoonily speak of here, a place known for its community knit-together-ness, all of those funky and charming annual events, and trees that look as though they should be featured on a postcard of Vermont or New Hampshire. Specimens that are seen elsewhere, like New England, do very well in Nevada City, thank you very much, and around late October, and into early November, depending on the color peak, the leaves will turn yellow, orange, and even a few brilliant versions of red. California isn't a state that is principally known for its ruddier leaves come the tenth month — golden leaves suit our Golden State vibe — making a Nevada City stop-by rather special for leaf peepers seeking this particular hue.
FIND A SELF-GUIDED TOUR... on the Nevada City Chamber site, one that takes you to specific addresses in and around Broad Street, the main thoroughfare through the heart of town. Red maples, dogwoods, and a London plane are all given the spotlight, so you'll see a nice variety of trees. Oh, and the tour? It's free, so just open it on your phone and follow along. If you can't make it in 2020, be cheered: Fall will back in Nevada City, giving foliage fans opportunities to admire brilliant trees found around one of our state's quaintest hamlets.