I don't know about you but I am ready for cooler temps, firepit nights, and fall colors.

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While football and pumpkin spice lattes are great and all, perhaps nothing says "fall is here" (unofficially) more than seeing the trees change color. It truly is the spirit of the season. And if you want to see autumn at its brightest, there's actually a scientific way to figure out when the colors of fall will come to the Tri-State area.

A website called smokymountains.com predicts that the optimal time to see fall colors in Illinois, and that time is the weeks of Oct. 26 and Nov. 2. According to the website,

The weeks of Oct. 26 and Nov. 2 look good for a fall leaf viewing trip, depending on what part of the state you hit. Most of northern Illinois will be at peak or near-peak fall foliage viewing the week of Oct. 26. Central Illinois should hit peak fall foliage the week of Nov. 9, and Southern Illinois, Nov. 16 — but by then, the rest of the state will be past its peak.

The interactive map put out by smokeymoutains.com lets you figure out what day and month would be best to have the best backdrop for family photos and all your social media photos.

Of course, there is no 100% accuracy that this will happen during these dates, this is completely an estimate based on weather. Some of the best places to visit for fall in Illinois to see all the colors are Cap Sauers Holding Nature Preserve, Matthiessen State Park, and Pere Marquette State Park. Plus, the Tri-States have some pretty parks and trails to visit during the fall season.

Bring on the fall colors. I am ready.

LOOK: Stunning vintage photos capture the beauty of America's national parks

Today these parks are located throughout the country in 25 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The land encompassing them was either purchased or donated, though much of it had been inhabited by native people for thousands of years before the founding of the United States. These areas are protected and revered as educational resources about the natural world, and as spaces for exploration.

Keep scrolling for 50 vintage photos that show the beauty of America's national parks.

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