Sunday, October 3, 2021

More 2021 Fall Colors at Rib Mountain

For years we have talked about going to see the fall colors from Rib Mountain in Wausau, Wisconsin.  Fall colors are so hard to predict.  A person can watch the color map diligently and still miss the peak color.  We have planned trips and then a big wind or rain storm would blow through and spoil the beautiful colors.  So when my daughter called to see if I was interested in going this year, I said absolutely yes.  Then I started watching the weather forecast.  Of course, we had gorgeous weather all week but the weather persons said the weekend would be cloudy and a 50/50 chance of rain.  It is one hundred miles to Wausau from my house.  It's a long way to go only to be disappointed by bad weather.  It took my eleven year old grandson to say, "let's just go! It will be fun anyway."  So we did.  My daughter Heather and her son Ewan picked up both grandmas, and we headed "up north".  

It was sunny and very warm when we left, but the weather can change dramatically in a hundred miles.  I would see some clouds in the distance and think things will change soon.  I'm usually not such a pessimist, but it has happened too many times.  It's Wisconsin after all.  The temperature has been in the 80's which is strange for October.  We even saw several lilac bushes full of blossoms and very few leaves.  Lilacs bloom in May in Wisconsin, not October.  Another sign global warming is real?

I'm happy I was so very wrong and so were the weather people.  The day and the weather were perfect.

We pulled into the Granite Peak ski area about one o'clock.  We had stopped for lunch earlier because we didn't know how long we would be at the park. 

We had reserved tickets online, but needed to go to the ticket counter to get our wrist bands.  The line was quite long, but it moved along.  It's always fun to people watch.  We could watch others leaving on the chair lift and returning so we knew exactly what we were doing by the time we reached the front of the line.


Before we knew it we were next in line.  Anyone who skis knows how this works, but this was only the second time I had been on a chair lift.  My husband and my daughters skied, but I did not.  I would go along sometimes and sit in the lodge with hot chocolate and my knitting.  My niece got married at a beautiful ski resort in Michigan, and the guests were taken to the top of the hill by a ski lift.  That was also a beautiful day. 

The trip up the mountain was great.  We stopped a couple times and it felt like the top of a ferris wheel, swaying in the breeze a bit.  On the way we stopped right to the side of some trees.  In the trees were some beads, several pairs of shoes and even a bright red bra.  I saw several people riding barefooted but I thought they just didn't want their flip flops falling off.  Maybe they threw their shoes onto the trees.  Seems to be a pretty expensive prank.  As for the, I didn't look to see where that came from.  

There were beautiful trees along the way.  The sumac was bright red, the birch trees were yellow and other trees were various shades of red, orange and gold.  It was a beautiful contrast to the trees that were still green.  

When we reached the top, we could stay on the chair lift and return or get off and explore for a while.  We got off.  Rib Mountain State park has a lot of trails and big rock formations.  Ewan was in his glory being the mountain man that he is.

There were stone steps and pretty ground cover.  People were hiking and running the trails.  It would be a great place to visit without the ride on the ski lift.  

The view of Wausau from the top was breathtaking.  Pictures don't do it justice.  I could never capture the real beauty of the area.

Eventually we returned to the lift and headed back.  It was just as much fun going back down.  

It was a wonderful warm and sunny day.  I am so grateful for the family I have and that they include me in their life.