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ATV ride offers leisurely look at the splendor of fall up north

The Red Arrow Snowmobile-ATV Club rides through Forest County to view fall colors Oct. 4, 2017. (WLUK/Eric Peterson)

OCONTO/FOREST COUNTY (WLUK) -- The calendar says we're about two weeks into fall, that means the fall color is emerging -- in some places, like the Northwoods, more than others.

In the Oconto County Town of Townsend, all-terrain vehicle drivers hit the trail to take in the sights. FOX 11's Eric Peterson tagged along.

Under the billboard between the Townsend Shell station and the Old Town Hall Bar, 13 ATVs were ready to hit the trails.


"Every Wednesday we get together with a group of people and take a ride," said Mark Whitefoot of Townsend. "Go out for lunch. Usually between 75 and 100 miles."

Whitefoot typically leads the tour. On Wednesday, the riders headed north toward Laona.

"Just for fun, enjoy our machines, enjoy the country," Whitefoot said. "A lot of scenery, beautiful. Animals, we really enjoy it."

As the group reached Forest County, "the colors are popping," said Gary Wagner, president of the Red Arrow Snowmobile-ATV Club. "There's several leaves down already. But there's a lot more to go. I would say in the 50 percent range of color right now."

See the Wisconsin Department of Tourism's Fall Color Report for details on where the colors are the best:


"It's getting pretty. Real pretty," Whitefoot said while riding. "It's been better in past years, but there's quite a bit of color right now."

"I think the wetness. All the water this year affected the colors a little bit. It's a little bit more muted than it normally is."

The riders were in no hurry. The group stopped along the Rat River to take it all in.

"The maples are the prettiest. They vary from orange to brilliant red," Whitefoot said. "The reds are all gone. They were good earlier. Now we got just the orange maples. But it's pretty. It's really pretty out."

Share your fall color photos and videos with us here:


After a short break, the group was back on the trail. Riders say when it comes to exploring the changing season, the view from an all-terrain vehicle is tough to top.

"You kind of feel like you become one with your machine, and nature," Wagner said. "You just kind of focus, and kick back and enjoy what Mother Nature gives us."

If you want to hit the trails, The Red Arrow Snowmobile-ATV club is hosting a fall colors ride and booyah feed at the Old Town Hall Bar and Restaurant in Townsend on Saturday morning.

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