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Anna Schultz-Friends On Hike
Anna Schultz / Her Campus
Life > Experiences

Autumn Hiking: Embracing The Season’s Beauty And Benefits

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Temple chapter.

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

Being in the city, concrete walls replace the beautiful multi-color trees that make fall the best time of year. So, it’s important to make sure you are getting out and fully indulging in the fall activities offered around Philadelphia as October embraces us with a warm hug. 

As someone who fully immerses myself in my favorite time of year, I also can admit that as days get colder and nights get longer, it makes it harder to find motivation to escape the warmth and comfort provided by my apartment.   

However, according to “Top 10 Reasons to Get Outside this Fall,” there are many valuable reasons why it’s important to get outside during the fall season.  

First and most importantly, vitamin D is an obvious factor in why exposing yourself to outside atmospheres is important when trying to stay healthy and battle seasonal depression. Exposure to vitamin D is important because it can help your body absorb calcium, which helps your bones develop, according to the National Institutes of Health.  

With that being said, there are some great ways to implement this health-positive aspect into your month of October. One way you can do this is to get outdoors and explore the best fall hiking trails.  

I have found from my own experience that making space for exercise outdoors really lifts spirits, and the stillness of nature really allows me to clear my head and fully disconnect from everything else going on in my life.  

For students who want quick and easy access to nature and hiking, Wissahickon Valley Park is a 25-minute commute that ranges from East Falls up to Chestnut Hill. Picking over 50 miles of trails to hike, your views and experience of fall foliage are plentiful. The diverse terrain allows for all types of hikers, bikers, and horseback riders to enjoy the beautiful fall ambiance. Additionally, the Wissahickon Valley Park does a great job of creating a vibrant and escapable atmosphere from the bustling city life that surrounds it. The park is totally worth checking out! 

I have personally spent time hiking at the Wissahickon Valley Park, and I found that even though the parking lot was full and not far from the city, it was very peaceful. The trails were not overpopulated and most of the time I forgot that I was still in Philadelphia. There are so many trails to hike, making it easy to do a three or nine-mile hike depending on how ambitious you are. There are also so many picnic tables along the way to stop and eat with a scenic view!  

If you’d rather fully escape the city for a complete disconnect from the fast-paced atmosphere, Pinnacle Point Loop is the hike for you. I believe allowing for a full disconnect makes way for the ability to be present with yourself and your surroundings. I find that it also gives you the ability to clear your mind and simply relax. Additionally, exposure to forests and trees boosts the immune system and reduces stress, according to the New York Department of Environmental Conservation. 

Pinnacle Point, my favorite fall hike, is located on the Blue Mountain Ridge of the Appalachian Mountains and is the perfect place to fully reconnect with nature. The nine-mile hike is a little more strenuous than Wissahickon Valley Park, but so worth the challenge. About halfway through the hike and at the end of your vertical climb, Mother Nature gifts you with a beautiful overlook of the mountain range. Although beautiful on any day, mid-October is a great time to conquer this endeavor. Looking out over the mountain range, the trees radiate vibrant colors of orange, red, and yellow making it hard not to smile and feel immense gratitude for nature.  

Overall, setting time aside for an outdoor adventure is a fun and inexpensive way to participate and appreciate the autumn months. More so, putting time aside to embark on an autumn hike is worth your time, and energy, and comes with many health benefits. So, make sure you get outside and get your hike on before all the leaves fall! 

Hi, I am Angeni a Temple 25' media studies and production major and an opinion writer for Her Campus. I specifically love to write about health related topics and one day hope to host my own podcast. I have a huge heart for all furry animals-especially dogs. I also love to spend time outside hiking, and traveling!