Fall foliage from space: before and after

Fall foliage is nearing its peak west of the District now, and has passed peak in higher elevations to the west and northwest.  You can tell that by looking at the leaves. Or, you can view high resolution snap shots from NASA’s Aqua satellite, taken from 438 miles above the Earth.

Here’s what our region looked like from space on September 17, below.


The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite captured this image on September 17, 2013. (NASA Earth Observatory)

The entire region is green – even the higher terrain.

Notice the dramatic change by October 21, below.


The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite captured October 21, 2013. (NASA Earth Observatory)

By then, brown had replaced green in the higher terrain. Some patchy green remained in the Piedmont areas but the hues were more subtle and dull.

“Some crops had been harvested, leaving behind golden stubble or red-brown bare earth,” NASA’s Earth Observatory notes.

Here are the above two images, in an animation sequence, below.


The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite captured this fall foliage sequence in 2013 (NASA Earth Observatory)

For those of you who prefer viewing the foliage from the ground, rather than from over 2 million feet above us, here are a couple recent reader photo submissions:


Great Falls after sunrise, October 27, 2013 (Martin Radigan Photography via Facebook)

Dupont Circle, October 29, 2013 (Erin Kelly via Flickr)

Readers: We want your fall foliage photos! Please share them with us on Facebook, Twitter, and/or Flickr!

Related: Fall foliage update: don’t wait until it’s too late | Searching for peak color at Eagle Rock and Capon Springs, WV (PHOTOS)

 

Jason is currently the Washington Post’s weather editor. A native Washingtonian, Jason has been a weather enthusiast since age 10.
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Jason Samenow · October 30, 2013