It is the first day of August, and I have given myself permission to stop thinking about summer and start focusing on the best, most glorious time of the year. That would be fall, in case you tripped while following my line of thinking.

I Can't Wait Til Fall in Kentucky

I know, I know. The calendar says autumn doesn't start until September 23rd. But I don't operate that way. For me, it's Labor Day. And yes, that's still a month away. No matter. I always say it's great to have something to look forward to, and I'm already planning fall weekends. My only concern is there may not be enough to get everything in that I want to get in.

Kentucky's Sheltowee Trace Nat'l Recreation Trail Sounds Perfect for Autumn

For example, who wouldn't want to tackle a beautiful trail in eastern Kentucky when the leaves change color in the Daniel Boone National Forest? I can't think of a better backdrop. And that's the backdrop you'll get on the Sheltowee Trace National Recreation Trail. But keep in mind, this is most assuredly a HIKER'S trail, with limited areas for usage of off-road vehicles, mountain bikes, and horses.

But if you DO have a mountain bike, you are in for a real treat.

HikingAmerica posted a portion of their journey through Sheltowee. In addition to their "overnight accommodations," you'll also see sights along the trail that sets Sheltowee Trace apart.

How to Prepare for Your Sheltowee Trace Hike

Now, one of the hikers recommended getting water from some creek, but the U.S. Forest Service suggests otherwise, noting that not all stream water is safe to drink. The agency says hikers and campers should bring their own water or whatever is necessary to TREAT stream or brook water.

The USFS also strongly recommends properly storing food and personal items, so as not to attract bears; taking all necessary precautions during hunting season, since state regulations allow for hunting on national forest lands; and making sure others know of your travel plans because there is no cell service on many sections of the trail. Here's the map that comes with the trail guide:

U.S. Forest Service
U.S. Forest Service

Again, only the most experienced hikers will salivate at the thought of trekking the entire 290 miles. But us "non-professional" hikers? Well, I can think of plenty of ways to enjoy the trail. I'd just "jump on" and "jump off" at select points.

And, I mean, come on...we're talking about the Daniel Boone National Forest, fall weather, and breathtaking foliage. Sounds like an unbeatable combination to me.

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