DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Warmer days like Monday will be fewer and far between as we head into September, and people will be trading sandals and swimsuits for hoodies and hiking boots.

Days are getting shorter, temperatures are beginning to drop, and fans of fall are waiting for the leaves to change colors. Parks around the Miami Valley are getting ready for the fall season, with the Centerville-Washington Park District opening a new trail at Bill Yeck Park just last week. It’s also a great time to get on the trails around the area, refresh your mind and get some exercise.

Jordan Hart, outdoor recreation coordinator for the Five Rivers MetroParks said, “It’s just so great to be able to get outside, explore what is out there, have a peaceful walk in nature, see the leaves as they change. It’s an awesome time just to be outside and get rejuvenated.”

Falling off rocks and cliffs are just some of the risks that come along with hiking, one reason it is important to stay on the trail and pay attention while in nature.

“We’re always looking at our phones these days but I would say preview the map before you go. You can use your phone as your map but look up and notice your surroundings so you don’t end up tripping, running into a tree, falling down a hill -none of those injuries,” Kristen Marks, executive director at Centerville-Washington Park District said. “We want to prevent that, and it’s easy to do just by paying attention.”

One way to get involved outdoors is to join a program or activity at a park to get acclimated to the trails around the area.

“We have lots of programs where you can get out on the trails, so if you are not familiar with our trails, it is a great way to preview them and become more familiar, gain confidence,” Marks said. “So whether it is hiking or walking on the paved paths with a group, we offer a lot of those, 3 to 4 times a week.”

Both park districts offer programs over the fall. You can find more information on their websites, metroparks.org/programs-events-finder and cwpd.org/events.