|New England trees ablaze|
Autumn's a magic season, a time when much of the American countryside erupts in a brilliant flash of red, orange, and yellow before fading away into the grays and whites of winter.
Summer's often-unbearable heat and humidity has given way to crisp, clear delightful days made all the more precious by their brevity. There's a sense of urgency, since it's your last chance to pursue many of the activities you can only dream about in the dead of winter.
Most people associate autumn with leaf peeping, and in places like New England, the ethereal explosion of color has to be seen to be believed. There's nothing like cruising over the crest of a hill and descending into a Vermont valley at the peak foliage time, the sparkling white spire of a small village church standing out against a rolling valley carpeted in crimson, gold, and scarlet.
The great thing about fall foliage is the fact it can be savored in an endless amount of ways. You can enjoy the show from a car, in a canoe, from a hiking trail, atop a bike, astride a horse, or standing hip-deep in a pristine trout stream.
But you don't have to travel to New England to take advantage of fall. Every region of North America has something to offer the adventurous traveler in autumn, from the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia to the Sonoran Desert of Arizona.
So oil your derailleur, grab your backpack, choose your flies, pack your binocs, stock up on film, strap your kayak on your car and get out there.
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication