Defenders of Ozark Highlands Trail gather to do battle against Mother Nature

Wearing an orange shirt, Chris Adams, OHTA maintenance director, gives assembled workers their marching orders in the Mulberry Mountain Lodge campground. (Special to the Democrat-Gazette/Bob Robinson)

Yahoo! September 23 is behind us.

The long, hot summer has officially ended. With lower temperatures just around the corner, it's almost time to dust off your backpack and prepare to hit the hiking trails.