let’s be honest, getting out the door with kids can be hard, let alone getting ready for a hike with kids, especially if your new to the whole hiking thing. Rest assured, like most things we try to do with our children, we have to prepare in advance.
Getting ready for a hike with kids can be less stressful and even exciting with the following 5 tips:
1.) Arrange to go Hiking with a Friend:
Your mama hiking friends are feeling all the same things your feeling. They too want someone to encourage and motivate them in getting ready for a hike with kids. Our kids are also more motivated, encouraged and less likely to have flown blown meltdowns when they have some friends along the hike, too.
2.) Plan Your Hike:
This seems obvious, but in order for you to get ready for a hike with you kids, you need to plan a hike. I am all for last minute adventures with my kids, but realistically, if you want to enjoy your hike and feel well prepared, you need to plan where your hiking in advance, so you can be more prepared in ensuring that your kids are prepared, too. Knowing exactly where your hiking gives you an idea on what the conditions of the trail are and what the current access to the trail is.
3.) Prepare Everything the Night Before
If you have successfully agreed upon a destination with your hiking friend, then you should be able to prepare all the gear needed and snacks in advance. Preparing everything in advance will save time, energy and reduce the likelihood of meltdowns the day of the hike, but meltdowns can still happen……. at least you can deal with just that.
4.) Pack squeezies, suckers, fruit snacks and maybe even jellybeans.
Getting ready for a hike with kids requires a lot of incentives and motivating snacks. While your gearing up the kids to head out the door, you may need a squeezie or 3 to keep them busy while you do a double check on all your gear. We usually save the suckers for the moment we insert the kids into the carriers beside the trail. It seems the biggest test in hiking with kids, is the initial load up before hitting the trailhead.
5.) Get an early start
Getting ready for a hike with kids is time consuming, because by the time you double check the gear, bribe them out the door, and unload them into packs near the trail, a lot of time as passed. Also, depending on the ages and temperaments of your children, they may be ready for a nap if you procrastinate in getting out the door on time.
Oh ya, don’t forget to check the weather! 🙂
Happy Hiking mamas!