10.13.2014

where yellow leaves dance in the sunlight

We returned from our bi-annual trail riding trip to the north woods, where spending time exploring the Nicolet Forrest lends itself to quiet and peaceful introspection... 

We continue finding the familiar trails to be ever changing, and discover new trails to explore. Fall colors were noted as being in "full color". The locals however agreed with us, the colors aren't necessarily full color. They are changing differently this year, and taking longer. We saw bare tree's, that had dropped their leaves, providing a colorful cushy blanket and crunchy sound for the horses to shuffle through. We also saw plenty of gorgeous full color trees, and yet there were more then the usual unturned green trees in the mix. Even our Maples at home are changing differently this year. It's a colorful mystery...


surround sound in color

Koda & Nemo were sporting a fresh trim, which found us frequently walking the edge of the trail. The northern trails are much less rocky then those we've ridden in our area the past few weeks. However, the combination of the trim, frequent smaller rocks often hidden under leaves, as well as some gravely trails, made for less then desirable footing for our barefoot boys. The dirt and the soft sandy trails found off the beaten path, deeper in the forrest, were a welcome respite and even more enjoyable. My hubby and I keep talking about getting boots for Koda & Nemo, but get discouraged when none of them seem like they would be right...we haven't settled on any, yet.

No water crossing for us on this trip, unless you count mud puddles. Koda avoided those, apparently he didn't want to get his pretty little feet dirty. Fine with me, the forrest mud puddles are slickery and yucky. I didn't want to ride in them either. Nemo got to avoid all of them, but one that wasn't bad...




We found out there is an actual water crossing for the horses on one of the Nicolet trails not too far from the ranch. Who knew? It's been years since we've ridden that particular trail, maybe next year. 

The weather was perfect on our trip, sunny with fresh Fall crispness in the air. We enjoyed our favorite eateries, local company, and quiet campfires with the horses. By the time the weekend rolled around, Spur of the Moment Ranch was the busiest we've ever seen. When we left, it was plum full. Horse trailers were lined up, every paddock was taken. There were mega four wheeler's in town for a cancer benefit weekend ride, some stayed at the ranch. Altho everyone is nice and respectful of each other, we were happy to pack up and leave the hustle and bustle the weekends bring. Truly thankful that we are able to enjoy the forrest in all it's glory during the quiet weekdays. The only living things we run into on the trail are a couple deer and turkey, and while heading out to the forrest an occasional local four wheeler on the main corridor.

Much of our ride is under a canopy of trees, where yellow leaves dance in the sunlight...





...and filtered light is magical...






...in between the quiet times, we share laughs...


laughter is good for the soul

a maple leaf landed on Nemo's hip
and stayed so long I had to snap a picture of his unique Appy spot!


...the pines speak for themselves, if you listen...


riding the pines


taking a break


heading out of the pines


...the mixed tree areas are some of the most colorful, and entertaining. My cowboy randomly twirls his rope reins throughout our rides. He unknowingly starts and stops at any given time. I was able to catch a short clip of the twirling, altho he usually spins the reins up tight and then unwinds them. Funny guy.





video



A Fall trip to the Nicolet wouldn't be complete without riding up to The Lookout. In order to get to the winding paths that lead up to the ginormous rock formation, we ride the Bonita Grade (pictured in the video above). We know we are getting close to the top when the familiar drumming echoes up from the ground with each step the horses take, as we ride up higher and higher for a breathtaking colorful view that overlooks the entire forrest. The trees go in every direction for as far as the eye can see...


Brad getting ready to take some photos

soaking up the view, from as close as I'll get to the drop off edge


I took a short video clip so you could see the amazing view, of course it doesn't do it any justice - and blogger makes it worse. I was surprised to hear how windy the video turned out! The view starts to my left of where Koda & I are standing above, and ends somewhere behind me where Brad and Nemo are heading down in the photo below...


video



heading down from the lookout

Koda's interested lookout ears


Thanks for riding along. Happy trails to you, 'til we meet again...



4 comments:

C-ingspots said...

Just beautiful!! *sigh* I wish I had some more vacation time to enjoy, but no more until next year. It goes too darn fast! Glad you guys had such a good time. :)

aurora said...

Thanks Lorie! We really look forward to our trips in the northwoods. Hope your recent wonderful camping trip carries you between the weekends, when you can spend more time with your horses!!

fernvalley01 said...

beautiful! looks like a wonderful ride

Shirley said...

What a beautiful place to ride, I'm sure it refreshes your soul. Love the red maple leaf "spot" -a Canadian Appy, eh?