Wisconsin fall 7D3485_StaatsCome with me for an afternoon in Wisconsin.  The air is cool but the sun is warm; the temperature’s about 57 degrees.  We head down a Rustic Road in Chippewa County.  After twisting and turning through agricultural areas there’s a sign ahead that we’re entering the Chippewa County Forest.  To the right is another sign marked Moon Ridge Trail and the forest road heading to the east looks inviting and filled with fall color.  Off the paved road and onto the forest road, each mile takes us deeper into the forest.  The colors are brilliant – especially in contrast to the blue sky dotted with white clouds.  There’s a different smell in the air – of fall and drying leaves.  We stop numerous times to photograph the colors and the meandering road.  In one hour we have driven less than three miles because of all our stopping.  There are many side trails leading from the main forest road but this one ahead isn’t drivable in the car.  Off on foot, up the trail, and then down the hillside.  As we step out of the forest area the view expands to the Spring Creek Flowage – a lake that meanders through the county – and the colors are intense and wonderful.  This is our view (and only ours as there’s no one else around).  Breathe in the smell of fall, feel the warmth of the sun, listen to the wind rustling through the leaves, take in the beauty of this day, and be thankful for being here at this moment of peak color in fall.

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