What’s holding you back from backpacking with your kids?
It’s not that hard. Really. Backpacking with kids doesn’t take a super human effort and the rewards are immeasurable. Here are a few tips to get you and your family out there.
Start with something you love. Something you really love. Kids are little polygraphs; they can totally tell when you’re faking it. If you love the beach, start there. If you love the mountains, go there.
But don’t start by circumnavigating Vancouver Island’s beaches or climbing Kilimanjaro. Start small. Just a few miles to some place you’ve already scouted. Stay realistic. If you warm them up you’ll have plenty of time to go epic later.
Take some friends with you, too. A friend for you and one for them. Going into the wilderness is not nearly as scary if both of you have someone you can talk to and be brave in front of.
As your kids get older and more comfortable in the outdoors you can do more and more. Only you can figure out how quickly you can scale up, but don’t worry. You’ll know. (And if you try to go too fast don’t worry about that either. Your kids will let you know.)
After backpacking with kids for the last 10 years, we’re now doing the kind of trips my adult friends are jealous of. We go deep into the woods and to the top of mountains. Best of all, it’s with my kids.
Get out there.