Feather River Scenic Byway, California
It's not surprising California is known as the Golden State (put the Gold Rush history aside for now), especially when driving along the Feather River Scenic Byway during the fall, when the valley erupts in color. The route covers 130 miles, beginning in the Sacramento Valley and traveling through the Sierra Nevadas before ending in the Great Basin. Visitors will encounter traces of railroad and gold mine memorabilia hidden among the waterfalls, rivers, forests, and desert terrain along their journey.
Not to be missed: Plumas-Eureka State Park, where visitors can learn about the early days of gold mining and California's history.
Before you go, check to see when the colors are at peak.
(Photo: iStockphoto/Terrance Emerson)