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Don’t miss these Instagram photo ops in Vilas County


  • Article
  • Attractions
  • Biking
  • Events
  • Fall
  • Hiking
  • Lodging
  • Scenic Drives
  • Trails

From Rustic Roads to lakeside resorts, here are a few places to find great photo ops in the Northwoods this fall.

Lake surrounded by fall trees as the sun sets

Fall has arrived in northern Wisconsin, and you won’t even need a filter to make your Vilas County pictures the envy of your friends’ Instagram feeds. From Rustic Roads to lakeside resorts, here are a few places to find the best Northwoods photo ops in Vilas County.

Rustic Road 60

Wisconsin’s system of scenic Rustic Roads crisscrosses nearly 60 counties in the state, and you can find a particularly pretty drive near Boulder Junction in Vilas County. Rustic Road 60—also known as County Highway K—winds through the Northern Highland-American Legion State Forest from just south of Boulder Junction east to the community of Star Lake. The tree-lined road passes several eye-catching Northwoods lakes, as well as old logging camps, hiking trails and a former sawmill.

Sunrise, sunset

There are few things more beautiful than a Vilas County sunrise. Unless it’s a Vilas County sunset. Or unless it’s a Vilas County sunrise or sunset over a forest awash in fall color. If you’re staying at one of Vilas County’s lakeside resorts and lodges, there’s a good chance you’ll be able to snap a pic of this beautiful Northwoods phenomenon right from your porch.

Cranberry marsh tours

Give your photos a literal splash of color with a tour of one of Vilas County’s famous cranberry marshes. On Fridays during the harvest season, the Manitowish Waters Chamber of Commerce and the Manitowish Waters Cranberry Growers Association partner to offer free cranberry marsh tours. No reservations are required, just meet at Cranberry Square on Alder Lake Road to watch an introductory video, sample cranberry products and participate in a Q&A session. Then, take your own vehicle to the nearby Vilas Cranberry Company for an up-close look at the bogs. And don’t miss the fun at Cran-A-Rama in Manitowish Waters and Cranberry Fest in Eagle River!

Hit the trail(s)

Vilas County boasts nearly 90 silent-sports trails, so that means there are a lot of opportunities to hike and bike in the heart of beautiful fall color. For a leisurely ride that spans more than 50 miles in the Northwoods, check out the Heart of Vilas County Paved Bike Trail System.

And don’t forget to download the Map It Vilas County trails app, where you can find trails by location, length and amenities. It even works without a cell signal!