Summer’s gone, beachwear and bandana are in the closet til next year, time to hunker down indoors. Wait – what? Fall is a whole nother season to charge out into. Grab a friend or three and get out fearlessly with these tips. It could make you wish it was October all year long.
Shorter days, cooler weather or even showers won’t keep you indoors if you dress to stay comfortable. Start with thin layers – t’s, vests, fleeces, rain shell, cap and gloves – you can add or take off. Then adjust what you’re wearing to sun or shade, warm or breezy, as needed. Today’s lightweight and functional materials make layering simple, and will even keep you wind and waterproof, head to toe. Weather’s no longer a challenge.
Speaking of changing outerwear, don’t miss the once-a-year fall color explosion outside. Since trees do not like to freeze their leaves off in the winter, they drop them before real cold hits, and before they do, they change color. Use this handy list to find hot locations all over the state Fall Color in CSPs. Then, especially look for native maples, poison oak (yes, it turns gorgeous colors and climbs high into trees), aspens, black oaks. As a bonus, many forests have aromatic bay laurel trees, whose fallen leaves are a scented delight.
Gather Round the Campfire
Sunsets come sooner in fall, meaning longer nights, and with a hint of chill in the air you now have every excuse you need to make a cozy, warming campfire to light stories, music, laughter, food. Just use extra caution – this is wildfire season, and things are tinder dry – and only use the fire pits.
Nothing builds an appetite like breathing cool fresh air, so be creative and plan worthy meals. More time around the campfire means you can be more daring – bake breads or biscuits, skewers with dipping sauces, killer macs, delectable bowls – the sky’s the limit. Bring favorite dishes to share, prep ahead, or make on site – the tang of fall and wood smoke makes for special meals you cannot get anywhere else.
Less and More
With Fall in the parks, you’ll usually find less people, less bugs, and less excuses to be inactive. And there’s more scenic beauty, more time around the campfire, more reasons to snuggle close and keep the chill off. For a few hours or an entire weekend, it’s time well spent.