Vermont Foliage Report: Near-peak to full color arrives in Northeast Kingdom

first_imgFor more information, visit www.VermontVacation.com(link is external). The foliage change appeared to slow to a near standstill during the misty, atmospheric weather of this past weekend.  But with a frosty night or two before the coming weekend and sunny weather forecast through Monday, near-peak to full color change is expected along the spine of the Green Mountains and will begin to emerge in the mountain valleys. Ray Toolan, who reports from Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom, observes a variety of foliage in the area. ‘Not a great deal of change from last week, most likely due to the wet weather. Still, we have a lot of variation, with the best colors in the higher elevations and around swamps and wetlands. In many places mid-slope forests are still in early stages while other areas are at or just past peak. Pretty much any of the paved roads in Lamoille and Orleans counties are showing nice color,’ Toolan says. Elsewhere, expect various stages of color across the state, including the mountain and river valleys where the foliage change ranges from early to mid-stage. The foothills east and south of Burlington are at mid-stage, reports Forester Keith Thompson. ‘The highlights are Jericho, Underhill and Huntington. It’s not as far along near the lake,’ Thompson says. ‘Overall a full array of vibrant fall colors are popping out from Middlebury Gap south to Killington, Bridgewater south to Ludlow, and Rutland south to Mt. Taber,’  reports spotter Tom Olson from the Maple Museum. The cooler temperatures are also moving the color change in the lower Champlain Valley and the foothills of the Taconic and Green Mountains into mid-stage, while the red maples in marshy areas are nearing peak. ‘Look for brilliant shades of red, yellow and gold in these areas,’ says Olson. In southern Vermont mid-stage color predominates along the higher elevations while the early stages prevail in the valleys where swampy areas are splashed with the crimson of red maples. For current road conditions and detailed planning information, please check our frequently updated map:  http://www.vermontvacation.com/vtopenforbusiness.htm(link is external) Best Bets: In northern Vermont, recommended scenic routes for peak color viewing include Route 114 between Lyndonville and Norton, Route 58 from Irasburg to Montgomery Center, Route 105 from North Troy to East Charleston, and Route 102 along the Connecticut River. Also try Route 302 east from Barre or Route 232 through the Groton State Forest; Route 2 between Marshfield and Lunenburg, Route 215 in Cabot, and Route 15 between Walden and Cambridge. Also, try back roads in Burke, Peacham, Barnet and Danville, which offer a variety of close-up and long-range views. Vistas from Interstate 89 from South Royalton to Richmond offer . Colorful foliage can also be seen on Route 108 between Stowe and Cambridge, Route 100 between Warren and Stowe, and Route 12 between Montpelier and Elmore. In the area around Rutland mid-stage color is emerging along Routes 7 (Middlebury to Rutland), 30 (Sudbury to Cornwall) and 4 (Rutland to Castleton). Mid-stage to near-peak foliage color is showing at higher elevations: Route 4 west from West Bridgewater to Killington and Sherburne Pass (including the Killington Ski Area Access Rd); Route 103 north from Ludlow to Route 7; Route 140 west from Mt. Holly to Wallingford and Middletown Springs. In southern Vermont where the foliage change ranges from early to mid-stage, suggested drives include Route 11 between Peru and Chester, Route 30 between Winhall and Newfane, Route 7A between Manchester and Bennington, Route 35 from Townshend to Grafton, and Route 9 between Bennington and Brattleboro. The Vermont Hospitality Council advises making advance reservations because the most popular lodgings may fill early on busy weekends during the foliage season. Some innkeepers may require a minimum two-night stay, especially on busy weekends.   Vermont tourism officials encourage visitors to take advantage of midweek specials during the foliage season as part of the statewide ‘Midweek Peek’ promotion. Deals range from discounted lodging to free Vermont products. For details, visit www.VermontVacation.com(link is external) Also available on the website are several tools for planning a Vermont Fall Foliage tour: Fall Foliage ForecasterLodging Availability ForecasterScenic DrivesFall Travel Tips last_img read more

What we know about possible COVID-19 transmission from freight and packages

first_imgWhat experts say about the risk of infection from packaging:-Studies suggest the virus can linger on packaging material between hours and days, depending on the material, temperature and humidity, according to the World Health Organization. The virus can stay 4-5 days on plastic or paper.-There is currently no evidence that people can catch COVID-19 from food or food packaging, according to the WHO, a view backed by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other government agencies. Coronaviruses cannot multiply in food – they need a live animal or human host to multiply and survive.-Since the new coronavirus cannot replicate on the surface of food or packaging, it can only become gradually weaker outside a living cell, said Jin Dong-Yan, virology professor at the University of Hong Kong.He did not rule out that a person could spread droplets containing the virus on the surface of food, or a package, and someone else could then contract the virus by touching the surface and then their mouth or nose. But such a case would be rare, he said.-Infection from contact with a frozen virus through imported food “is still not to be considered a major route of infection and still not an event that should substantially affect policy at the public health levels,” said Eyal Leshem, director of the Center for Travel Medicine and Tropical Diseases at Sheba Medical Center in Israel.-“The number of virus particles coming out a person’s mouth or nose is far greater than a few virus particles remaining on frozen foods, somebody touching it and then spreading it,” said T. Jacob John, retired professor of clinical virology at Christian Medical College, Vellore, India.”Among all the risks, I think these are very low risks.” -New Zealand reported its first COVID-19 cases in more than three months on Wednesday, prompting a swift reimposition of movement restrictions. Health officials raised the possibility that the virus had arrived in New Zealand via freight, given one of the infected people works at a cool store that takes imported frozen goods from overseas.-China said on Thursday a sample of frozen chicken wings imported into Shenzhen from Brazil had tested positive for the virus. The discovery by local disease control centers was part of routine screenings of meat and seafood imports that have been carried out since June, when a new outbreak in Beijing was linked to the city’s Xinfadi wholesale food center.-Earlier this week, traces of the virus were found in China on the packaging of frozen shrimp from Ecuador and on the outer packaging of imported frozen seafood that arrived at Yantai port from Dalian in northeast China.-Chinese customs officers first found the virus in packaging from Ecuador on July 10. It marked the first positive results from 227,934 samples that had been taken from imported foods, their packaging, and the environment. Topics :center_img China reported several cases of frozen food packaging contaminated with the novel coronavirus this week, while New Zealand said it is investigating the possibility that its latest COVID-19 cases could be traced to imported freight.Here’s what has happened and what experts say about it:What’s happened:last_img read more