family photos in boise
Top 5 things to bring hiking with kids
May 11, 2022
Little boy looking up at the camera and smiling while on a hike with his brothers

When it comes to kids being out in nature, you want them to have fun but you also want to make sure you are prepared for the things they need when something goes awry. And believe me, something will eventually go awry! So let’s talk about the things we need to make sure we bring with us to make sure they are happy and stay that way when you are adventuring.

1. Snacks

I feel that this item goes without saying. But what types of snacks would be good to bring with you? Some good items to consider are granola bars, fruit like grapes or apples or even raisons. Other dried fruit options like mango or fruit leather are also wonderful choices! Nuts (if your child isn’t allergic) or even sliced veggies like cucumber or bell pepper would be fantastic!

2. Water

Water is, of course, essential for any trip. Small children need to learn that water is included to sustain their adventure. And getting them used to carrying their own, even if it is just a small reusable water bottle, is essential to their experience.

3. Backpack

The one thing I know about kids is that they like to carry their own gear and feel important. Even if that gear is their snacks and water, that is all thats needed. Some kids like to bring things with them that they just want on their trip. This is a good way to get them used to carrying more weight. Even if it’s a doll or an action figure.

4. Whistle

A whistle, even though you may find it annoying, is one of the more essential items to bring on a trek with your kiddos. Some backpacks have whistles built in to the buckle on the front of their straps, but you don’t have that, then bring your own. Whistles need to be used only for emergencies and kids need to be instructed properly on how to use them if they get separated from you. Read my post on hiking and whistle safety with kids to learn how to train them to use it properly.

5. A smile

Sometimes we head outside because we need nature therapy. Sometimes we get outside because our kids need it. But no matter what, we need to understand that nature is healing. If we don’t start outside with a smile, hopefully we will actually come back with one. The rules are, no yelling (because we are being respectful of those around us right?) and to have fun. You can’t do that without a smile. Try it sometime!

5 boys sitting and playing around the large rocks while on a hike
Family walking across the rocks across the creek on their hike

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