September marks the official end of summer, and almost on cue, the weather is becoming a bit chillier already and people are donning their sweaters. One of the best things about the cooler weather is that we can all do our favorite outdoor activities without ending up coated in sweat—plus, nothing is more entrancing than hiking through the woods surrounded by changing foliage. The autumnal equinox was officially on September 23rd, and here are some state parks that knew how to properly celebrate the arrival of fall.
Spiro Mounds Archaeological Center, Oklahoma
Oklahoma’s only prehistoric Native American archaeological site, Spiro Mounds Archaeological Center, is a great place to experience autumn. An easy one-mile guided walking tour will bring you around its beautiful grounds. You’ll gain an exclusive look into Oklahoma’s past and its prehistoric people that built the mounds. There’s even a theme-appropriate treat: learning why 12 of the mounds line up during the equinoxes and solstices.
L.L. Stub Stewart State Park & Rooster Rock State Park, OregonBoth L.L. Stub Stewart and Rooster Rock State Parks in Oregon host a Star Party to ring in the autumnal equinox. Guests were able to look through a variety of telescopes to stare at the stars, not-so-patiently awaiting the arrival of fall as they did so.
Toltec Mounds Archaeological State Park, Arkansas
Visitors learned all about Native American culture at Arkansas’ Toltec Mounds Archaeological State Park during the autumnal equinox. There was a weapons demonstration, and similar to Spiro Mounds Archaeological Center, there was also an explanation of the mounds in correlation with the sun’s placement.
Hugh Taylor Birch State Park, Florida
You may have visited Hugh Taylor Birch State Park during the summer solstice when the Moonpath Circle held a Tequesta Drum Circle. In fact, these drum circles are held during all equinoxes and solstices, honoring those who lived on these lands before we did. If you missed the autumnal equinox celebration, then make sure you head over there during the winter solstice where you’ll be comforted by a huge bonfire, poetry, belly dancing, and, of course, drumming.Enjoy a relaxing scenic drive to watch the leaves change, or head out for a refreshing fall hike. Whatever your vice, make sure you download our Pocket Ranger® mobile apps to aid in your explorations.