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From sweat to sweaters: Fall arrives today

Leaves show signs of fall foliage in Charlton on September 23, 2013.
Photographer: Patrick Dodson
Leaves show signs of fall foliage in Charlton on September 23, 2013.
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— The sweltering summer succumbed to fall today when the autumnal equinox hit its mark at 10:21 a.m.

Soon green will give way, as leaves lose their chlorophyll but in turn provide fall's glorious show. Apples come into season - pumpkins, too. Blink and it will be Halloween.

I Love NY's Fall Foliage Report states that spotters in Fulton County based in Gloversville expect up to 20 percent color change with touches of muted yellow, orange and rust-colored leaves beginning to emerge. Spotters in Amsterdam in Montgomery County project similar change for the weekend. In Rensselaer County, color change will range from 10-15 percent with color remaining low in the valley and more apparent in the county's eastern and northern portions and on the higher elevations. Look for emerging patches of red and light yellow leaves. Fulton County observers reporting from Lapland Lake in Northville expect 10 percent change with dull burgundy and red leaves, along with some shades of yellow and orange beginning to emerge. Look for up to 10 percent change in the Glenville area of Schenectady County with touches of red and yellow leaves of average brilliance.

The National Weather Service reports there are only two times a year the earth's axis is not tilted away or toward the sun. On the equinox, which derived from Latin means "equal night," the sun's rays spread nearly equally at most latitudes.

Many people think it will be a day of equal day and night. But no, there will be 12 hours, 10 minutes and 36 seconds between sunrise and sunset.

We won't come close to equal day and night time until Saturday, when there will be 12 hours and a few minutes of daylight.

Overall, this summer was not nearly the hottest on record, according to National Weather Service temperature statistics. Of course, those figures are compiled for meteorological summer running June 1 through Aug. 31.

The National Weather Service predicts a high of 82 degrees and a low of 60 degrees for today - warm, but by no means anything extraordinary.

In Siberia, the average temperature on the autumnal equinox is a chilly 36 degrees. But by Dec. 21, the winter solstice, it plunges to minus 52 degrees.

That is something to think about when the dog days of summer return next year.

Daily Gazette staff contributed to this report.

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