I go through this every year. Call it fall anxiety. After 9 years of being on the shores of Lake Jocassee for fall, you’d think I would remember that every year, that’s every year, the brightest, most colorful time for fall color is in early November. But no, every year I fill with angst and anxiety as late October arrives and the hills are still green. And it’s not just me. I remember my favorite area naturalist stating last year, in late October, that there would be no fall color that year, that the leaves would just go from green to ground cover. Wrong, wrong, wrong. Every year, wrong. This week, the first week of November, the hills are on fire with color, color that can only occur in the southern Appalachians, color that is simply indescribable. It is breathtaking. It leaves me speechless on the boat, not a good thing when you’re a guide! I think the folks out with me understand, though. As I pull the boat into some shaded cove, filled with an incredible diversity of trees, all of them radiant, the boat, full of people, falls completely silent. Every time.