Fall colors along the Escanaba River
Fall colors line country roads and reflect in the Escanaba River. The red and orange leaves of oaks and maples - and golden yellows of white birch - enliven green forests of pine and cedar. Curtains of faded white smoke from neighbor's furnace fires drift out of colorful woods into blue sky. Morning frost greets sunny days that slowly warm then chill by bitter autumn winds - winds that will soon shift from the north. They'll sweep down from the Canadian arctic, gather strength and coldness crossing Lake Superior, then transform this colorful Upper Michigan season into a gray and white bone-chilling winter. Starry nights have grown long and cold. Once again it is time to travel - time to seek warmer lands with tropical beaches and days and nights of T-shirt weather. It is time to go west - west to the far east.