Time to enjoy autumn colors | RecordCourier.com

Time to enjoy autumn colors

Amy Roby

For me, one of the greatest appeals about autumn is the way the trees adorn themselves in riotous color to celebrate the change of season. We're fortunate to live in an area that abundantly demonstrates this form of nature's artistry. Last weekend, I took a day trip with a friend to hike around Hope Valley, and the whole area is alight with glorious shades of fall.

Among the many aspens, lush greenery has begun to give way to shades of gold, orange, and crimson. Some leaves have started to drop, creating a rich carpeted tapestry along the many hiking trails. Viewing the colors and taking in the sharp, crisp air is a banquet for the senses.

People parked along both sides of Highway 88 to glimpse the spectacle. We were there later in the afternoon, and dappled light danced along the veins of aspens woven through the evergreens that surround the valley. Shocks of golden color were visible in every direction.

In autumn, trees change color in preparation for months of rest across the winter season. All spring and summer, a tree's leaves produce chlorophyll, which helps process energy from sunlight into a food source for the tree. Chlorophyll also gives the leaves their green hue. Come fall, changes in the amount of daylight combined with declining temperatures indicate to the tree that it's time to stop this process. After the chlorophyll breaks down and the green color dissipates, we're left with a splendor of rich color before the leaves eventually drop.

This showcase lasts only a few weeks each year, and now is the perfect time to witness the majesty. It's worth it to make the short drive to Hope Valley and experience this brief and brilliant spectacle first-hand.

Elks host cowboy concert and dinner

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The Tahoe/Douglas Elks invite the public to attend a special evening with accomplished cowboy poet and musician Richard Elloyan at the lodge on Oct. 13.

Elloyan is a lifelong Nevada resident and grew up in Virginia City. His revered songs and poems are inspired by his love of the history and landscape of Nevada. He has performed at many Western music festivals and was a featured guest on singer-songwriter Lacy J. Dalton's radio show last fall. His most recent album is titled "Up for Adoption."

The evening's menu includes Santa Maria-style tri-tip, creamed corn, salad, and dessert. Tickets are $25 per person; reservations must be made in advance no later than Oct. 10.

For information or to secure a reservation, call Mary Retterer at 775-392-2249.

Elks Bingo FRIDAY

On Friday, at 5 p.m., doors to the Tahoe/Douglas Elks lodge open for Bingo. Warm ups start at 6 with regular games to follow at 6:30. Coverall jackpot is $1025 in 46 numbers; Powerball jackpot is $150. Hamburgers and hot dogs are available for purchase.

The Tahoe/Douglas Elks Lodge is located at 1227 Kimmerlng Road in the Gardnerville Ranchos.