Hiking with (young) Kids: A Recipe for Fun – or Disaster?
When he was little, I used to put my son in the hiking baby carrier and take him out for a hike. Once he got too heavy, I had to stop taking him, which was a bummer as he’d always enjoyed it. But lately he’s been asking to come hiking with me.
So – last week (on an amazingingly bright and sunny day) I took him up to the Big Rock area of the You Yangs. With lots of picnic tables, places to have a bbq (or roast marshmallows by the fire), and a large open area for running around – this is a perfect area for little ones.
Here’s what I learnt:
- Having a picnic lunch first worked well – he got comfortable in the surroundings and couldn’t wait to explore.
- I let him lead the way he wanted to go – he felt in control, and could keep within what he was comfortable with.
- Up on the ‘Big Rock’ area is popular for abseiling – so if your kid likes to run around (or away from you) take extra care as the sides are steep!
The result? We had a great time (with him declaring that Flinders Peak was ‘the huge I’ve ever seen’. Which means: It’s big!), and asking a lot of questions about kangaroo’s and koala’s. He also agreed on the way home that we should go again soon (winner!).
Hopefully this was the first of many hiking adventures with my son!
To find out more about what I’m doing with The Hunger Project Australia, and WHY, head to my fundraising page.