LOS ANGELES – The running joke in California, especially Southern California, is that the state doesn’t experience fall, but Nick and Alena Barnhart are proving everyone wrong.

“Fall colors in California, you got to like it,” says Nick Barnhart.

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The married couple started taking fall photos as a hobby, just loving the colors and the landscapes.

“When you take pictures of the coast or take pictures of summer, you pretty much get one color, but the fall colors there’s like four or five different shades,” says Barnhart.

The varying terrain in California also adds to the beauty of the mountains, valleys, and farms. Together they photograph it all. This positive pastime turned into something more. After posting their photos to California Fall Color, a website that tracks autumn in the golden state, offices, buildings, and hospitals hired them for professional work.

“It became a full-fledged business, which started as a hobby,” says Barnhart.

But you can still find their photography on the fall blog, like the ones we took during our tour of Oak Glen. Nick and Alena are color spotters helping John Poimiroo, creator of California Fall Color. They report the levels of color change, from starting to past peak, helping visitors of the site pick the perfect spot to find fall.

“It offers a lot more than just seeing the fall colors trees,” says Barnhart.

Nick is right. There is more than just color, especially in Oak Glen. You can apple pick apples, grab homemade pastries, and check out animals. Typical autumn activities here in California.

“Everyone seems to come to California for the beaches and the sunsets and things, but there’s so much more to offer with the fall colors,” says Barnhart.

For those who say SoCal doesn’t do fall, Nick says the leaves change here longer than many places he has visited including Oregon and Wyoming, with about two months of oranges, reds, and yellows.

“We have just as beautiful, if not more beautiful, and the key is a variety of fall colors here in California versus other areas,” says Barnhart.

So next time you miss that feeling of fall, look right in your own backyard. Apple season in Oak Glen ends December 1, so head out now!