Hiking and Backpacking with Kids


Name: Travis Lofthouse
Subject: Backpacking with Kids
I did an overnighter backpacking trip with my six year old son. We covered twelve miles, and he was a real trooper. I did end up carrying everything at times, but other times he was able to pitch in and help carry his things. It was a rigorous, steep hike at times as well, but I was very proud of his ability and determination. I might not go so far next time, but would love to take him out again, this time with his little brother and sister, as he talks about it all the time and has bragging rights too!

Name: Irene Sheppard
Subject: Kids Backpacking in Havasupai
My family accompanied my teaching colleagues and our gifted students on a three-day backpacking adventure in Havasupai Canyon. What a fulfilling experience we all had! The kids, ages 9-14, had never backpacked before. Were the adults (all 40+ years old) a bit leary? We didn't let it show. At the end of three days we had ALL gone swimming in the freezing waters of glittering waterfall pools, swung off of a rope swing to splash ten feet below, descended (and ascended) a grizzley 100 foot cliff via chain and cave, and hiked 20 miles. We adults shed our fears and trepidation in order to model intelligent risk-taking. The kids responded beautifully; they are our heroes. We adults are revitalized. I have never had a better backpacking experience.

Name: Amber
Subject: Kids backpacking
My husband and I have taken my niece on overnight backpacking trips since she was 7 (and she is tiny!). We also have climbed mountain peaks with her. Although she gets tired hiking (usually 3-5 miles each way) she feels a sense of accomplishment when she we are done. She loves to help pump water, cook food and everything we do. She also carries most all of her own stuff up the mountain. We will be taking my 7 year old nephew for the first time this summer. It is a great self-esteem booster.


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