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Take a Hike!

In a survey by the Outdoor Foundation, it was found that children are primarily motivated by their families to participate in outdoor activities.  What better way to get children outdoors and active, than by going on a family hike?  Below are some tips for planning your hike so the littlest of hikers have a fun and rewarding experience.

  • Be prepared! Gear everyone up with appropriate, well-fitting hiking shoes or boots and comfortable, breathable clothing — bright colors (for little ones mostly) and layers are best.
  • Stock your backpacks with Deet-free bug spray, water, snacks, a well-stocked first-aid kit, GPS unit and rain gear, just in case.
  • If a child is too small to walk on their own, consider using a backpack carrier rather than a stroller.  It’ll be easier to maneuver over the terrain with baby in tow and they’re sure to enjoy the “bird’s-eye” view.
  • Establish and discuss “rules of the trail” before you head out, e.g., staying quiet to not disturb the animals, plants to steer clear of, not running off, etc.
  • Start with short hikes on easy trails with fairly flat surfaces to get everyone accustomed to the hiking experience.
  • Take your time. Go slow so everyone can keep up, but also to enjoy and explore your surroundings.
  • Geocaching or playing games on your hike are great ways to keep children interested and moving along.  Visit www.geocaching.com to find out more about this fun outdoor family activity.

 

Happy hiking!