MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — It's known in northern New England as the fifth season.
But the time when the thawing winter landscape turns dirt roads into mucky seas and highways into frosty roller coasters dotted with potholes doesn't get featured on tourist calendars.
Mud season occupies a special place in the region. It's the ugly mirror image to the picture-perfect foliage of autumn that draws millions to look at mountains painted red and gold.
While some people fear getting their cars stuck in the mud, some people revel in the opportunity to go "mudding."
Maine forest rangers have had to warn people not to tear up roads and fields with four-wheel-drive vehicles.