noun: equinox; plural noun: equinoxes

  1. the time or date (twice each year) at which the sun crosses the celestial equator, when day and night are of equal length (about September 22 and March 20).
  • another term for equinoctial point.  

Today marks the Autumnal Equinox. We could get scientific and explain exactly what is going on celestially, but we’d rather talk about what this means for us explorer types. Plus, we really aren’t the experts on the celestial world. We’re dog people!


The Autumnal Equinox is officially the kick off to fall. Even for many who aren’t quite ready for winter’s chill, fall is thought of as the best time to be in the outdoors. Not only are the temps cooler, the bugs at bay and the high elevations free from snow (though not for long), nature captivates us with one of the greatest shows on earth. From the first yellow leaves in the yard, to complete mountainsides radiating red and yellow tones, fall is a spectacular time to plan a hike or backpacking trip.

Here are a few reasons why fall is our favorite season for outdoor play:Fall2

  • Cooler temps! This one is obvious, but it really is a treat to hike, bike, run, climb and play in cool weather.
  • Say goodbye to dusty trails. Fall rains and moisture equal tacky hero dirt.
  • There is nothing like sleeping in a toasty sleeping bag through a crisp fall night. Just don’t try to wake us up early. We’re sleeping in.
  • Fewer crowds. Sometimes, it is nice to be alone in the woods.
  • Fewer bugs!
  • Leash laws lifted – For some of our local trails in Bend, OR, the leash laws are only in effect during the peak summer season. Go dog go!
  • Views – the visibility on a clear, crisp day cannot be matched.
  • We’ve already mentioned it, but the changing of leaves is truly one of the greatest shows on earth.


What other reasons do you have to celebrate the coming of fall?

Please share by commenting below or on Facebook.

3 thoughts

  1. this is all so true! I have an older Wheaten Terrier and the minute it started feeling like fall, he was like the energizer bunny and loves to be outdoors. The fall temps are perfect for him and we can take longer walks. We visited Weston Bend National park this year and we both had an awesome time!

  2. Visiting Bend is on my to do list in the near future and am intrigued about these leash laws lifted during non-peak season. Will you provide a link to more information – I’m looking for dates and the trails it applies to. Thank you!

    1. Hi Sierra Trails. We recommend starting with the USFS page for Deschutes County – http://www.fs.usda.gov/main/deschutes/home. Once you get to Bend, visit one of our many great outdoor retail shops – they are a wealth of local trail knowledge. Most of the leash restrictions here were lifted on September 15th for the remainder of the winter. Some of the popular trails that the leash restrictions apply to are the Deschutes River Trail, South Sister climbing trail, Todd Lake Trail and Green Lakes Trail. Now is a great time for off-leash exploration! If you come to Bend, swing by the Ruffwear office! We now have a retail store here!

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