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Hiking with Kids: Five Things to Pack

Hiking with Kids: Five Things to Pack

With summer in full swing, many Vancouver moms are hiking with kids. We are fortunate to live in a city with nature right at the doorstep, as we are surrounded by so much amazing natural beauty. There are lots of kid-friendly hikes to choose from. To make your adventures in the great outdoors as successful as possible, we have five must-have items to pack when you’re hiking with kids.

Must-Have Items for Hiking with Kidshiking with kids

1. Food and Water

Our first item may be a little bit obvious. If you’ve ever left the house with kids you know that bringing something to eat and drink is very important, and means the difference between a cranky kid and a happy one. When you’re hiking with kids the stakes are even higher, as little ones are hungrier and thirstier as they exercise. Also, when you’re out in nature you can’t just stop and pick up snacks and drinks. Pack a water bottle for every member of the family, and choose some energy-packed food. We suggest trail mix – they call it that for a reason!

2. Extra Clothes, Hats, Sunscreen

Make sure that your whole family is protected from the elements when you’re hiking with kids. Children have a way of getting dirty, so pack extra clothes. Of course hats and sunscreen are a must whenever you’re outdoors. Also remember to think about layers, both when you’re getting everyone dressed before the hike and when you’re packing extra clothes. The temperature can change quickly, and layers will keep everyone comfy in the great outdoors.

3. Markers and Notebooks

Kids love to document their discoveries and experiences. Bring along a package of markers and notebooks for your children. Littler ones can draw (or scribble), and bigger kids can write about their hike. They may even want to create a short story about their day out in nature, or play a make-believe game in which they’re park rangers, detectives or scientists on the hunt for a rare and exotic plant.

4. Wipes and Hand Sanitizer

Children are messy at the best of times, but this goes double when you’re out in nature. When you’re hiking with kids you may want to relax the rules and accept that a certain amount of dirt is inevitable. All the same, the dirt can get out of control, especially when it’s time to eat, so be prepared for clean-up with some wipes and hand sanitizer. You’ll likely be away from running water, so even if your little ones are past the point where you pack wipes everywhere, this will be the time to buy a small pack.

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5. First Aid Kit

Small cuts and scrapes, blisters and bug bites are par for the course when hiking with kids, so be prepared with a small first aid kit. Include items like bandages – lots and lots of bandages – as well as tweezers, acetaminophen or ibuprofen, lotion for bug bites and allergy medication if anyone in your family needs it. Being able to treat minor injuries on the spot will make your day go much more smoothly.

What’s on your must-have list when you’re hiking with kids?

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