Hiking with kids is a good way to teach your child to go for walks in the fresh air and outdoor recreation. If you are an avid tourist and plan to take children on a camping trip, it’s better to do this when they are still young. Hiking not only helps the child learn the basics of survival, but also strengthens his mental and physical health. You will also strengthen the relationship with your child and be able to better understand him. But how to understand where to go camping with a child and how to create safe conditions for him?
We answer the most common questions from parents about a hiking with kids:
Why should I take the child with me on a camping trip?
People have always been closely associated with nature. Many tribes lead a nomadic lifestyle even today. We learned to travel in the desert, dense forests, marshes, ice countryman and mountains. In modern life, there are many technologies that facilitate our movement, such as cars or motorcycles. However, people still go hiking because it helps them grow. Therefore, they pass on their good habits to children.
A hiking with kids can distract your son or daughter from smartphones, tablets and a computer. This way you can protect their eyesight and improve physical performance. If your child is overweight, hiking will help him cope with this problem!
Hiking soothes and helps develop creativity and freedom of thought in children. They socialize and communicate with other children from your travel group. The son can follow the example of men in the company, which show their strength and endurance during the journey. The daughter will be able to see that the woman is not weak and can be as strong as a man.
Don’t forget that you will be surrounded by rich nature. Birds, animals and plants can be explored with the kids. There is also a chance that your child will be well aware of the geography and learn how to navigate in open areas.
How to make a trip with kids interesting and fun?
In hiking with kids you can do different things: hiking games, research of the territory, plants and animals, etc. The more attention the child will focus on the location in which you are located, the more impressions you leave to your son or daughter. They will forever remember the lessons of survival and the beauty of nature. In addition, you teach children to have fun on their own, they will be keen on finding a rare bird by her voice, and not on nagging and swearing because of the long distance and physical exertion.
To instill in children a love of hiking, you need to remember one necessary rule: a child is just as important member of a group as any adult. You shouldn’t treat him like a baby. He must have his own equipment: a backpack, a bottle of water, food, medicines. The child should feel part of the team.
Choose interesting routes with attractions. For example, find a path that leads to an old ranch or lake. You can see in advance where the memorable places. So, you turn the trip into a real adventure. Children love to fantasize and be sure to come up with an interesting event that will be associated with hiking.
At what age can you take children on a hike?
There are no big age limits for children if you are going camping. No wonder people came up with children’s carriers. If you had a dream that your son or daughter will become the same avid traveler, just like you, then you should start familiarizing them with the beauty and grandeur of our world as soon as possible. You only need to think about how hard it will be to travel with a one-year-old child or infant. Children at different ages behave very differently. Before taking the child with you, read the rules of travel with kids of similar age.
When it comes to the independent movement of the child, it is worth remembering that all children are different. You cannot immediately tell whether your baby is able to pass the selected route. First, you should choose not very difficult trips without major obstacles and with good weather conditions.
Is hiking with kids safe?
Hiking is safe if you are an experienced, intelligent and watchful person. To go camping with children, first choose the simple routes that you know well. They shouldn’t be long, with sources of water and adequate weather conditions. Don’t immediately go to the Sahara Desert or Mount Everest.
For starters, you can choose a trip of 3-4 km (2-3 miles). Gradually increase the length of the route if you see that the child easily passes such distances and is interested in the further continuation of the hike.
No matter how short and easy your trip is, plan your trip in advance. Always take with you food, water and a first aid kit. Warn family and friends that you are going on a particular route. Use the tips professional.
How to make a hiking with kids as interesting and safe as possible?
Take your own research. Read in advance information about what animals, plants, birds and soil are on the territory of the future campaign. Your children will always rely on you and your knowledge, during the trip they will ask you “Dad, what kind of bird is sitting on a tree?”, “Mom, what are these berries called? Are they edible?”,“Why does this bush have such strange leaves?”. Through this practice, you can become an example to follow in the eyes of your child. You will bring up a person who wants to learn and discover something new. In addition, their own knowledge of which plants can be poisonous, which animals can be dangerous for your children, will be added to yours.
Equipment and camping hiking with kids
Do I need to buy professional equipment for my child right away?
Yes, you can do it, but buy equipment gradually. Start with small gifts, such as a new sports water bottle or a protective whistle, so that the kid can show his location if he is lost. If your child gets the equipment gradually, he or she will have the excitement to go hiking more often. It looks like buying a new toy, about the same principle, isn’t it? 🙂
Now on the shelves there are many special outdoor goods for kids. However, you should buy large and expensive things that will be useful for the growing child. Take standard backpacks, sleeping bags, travel mats and tents. This way you will save a lot of money and teach your child to carry heavy equipment. Don’t forget to update things as they age. The child shouldn’t sleep in a thin worn out sleeping bag or wear a leaky backpack.
How much weight can my baby carry?
It is not necessary to load the child with a bunch of things from the very beginning. However, you shouldn’t go camping on luggage either. The main cargo for children should be: a bottle of water, a first-aid kit, a personal backpack and spare clothing. Thanks to this load, the child will quickly get used to the hikes and will feel involved in the process itself. Remember that the weight of equipment needs to be increased gradually, otherwise your son or daughter may have a hernia or problems with his/her back.