One Word That’ll Get Kids Excited To Hike

As a family, we enjoy spending time outdoors and hiking whenever we can. We've been "all systems go" on this activity for years now... until this season when my son no longer rides in the child carrier backpack.  Alas, as full of boundless energy as this kid is - he doesn't get that excited about HIKING.  Little stinker. Five minutes in to the trail:  "My legs hurt!  Carry me, mommy!" He's just not the trooper that his big sister has always been, when it comes to hiking. She used to cover miles, starting at age 3, sporting her own little mini Camelbak.  Aaaah.... good times. It's all a bit frustrating, and rather ironic, as my son is one of the most active and adventurous kids I've ever met.  What a minute.  Adventurous.  Hmmm... let's tap into some of that... So on our camping trip a week ago, I wanted to take one last hike with the kids before returning to civilization.  I find a pulloff area near a pretty red mountain and rather than ask, "Do you guys want to hike?", I say, … [Read more...]

Chasing Wild Horses

Have you ever seen wild horses... living and running free? Did you know such a thing still existed? Here in the Wild West, you *can* still find wild horse herds.  Exciting, isn't it?! (Or is it just me... the girl who used to cry herself to sleep at night, in wont of her own horse?) There are even a few dedicated sections of government owned land set aside as wild horse preserves, to protect these lovely creatures.  Located in Western Colorado, the Little Book Cliffs Wild Horse Refuge is one of three such ranges in the United States. Little Book Cliffs Wild Horse Refuge There are a few rules to accessing and enjoying the Little Book Cliffs Wild Horse Refuge area, but for the most part they let outdoor enthusiasts have at it.  You can camp, hike, and horseback ride through this preserve... enjoying the scenery while you pursue your Ultimate Quest:  viewing wild horses. Horses were re-introduced (post Ice Age) to North America by the Spaniards in the 1500's.  Known as … [Read more...]

Kids Gear: Deuter Junior Backpack

Our youngest child has a Deuter Kids backpack that we are very impressed with.  So when my 8 year old daughter needed a slightly larger, but still kid sized pack... we looked to the Deuter Junior Backpack. In the specifications for the Deuter Junior Backpack it says 'ages 3 and up'.  Personally, I think the Deuter Kids would work best for any toddler, up through about age 5 or 6.  Once they pass that age, I think they would do even better with a Deuter Junior Backpack.  While still a reasonable size for a child, it also features a small back system but offers additional space. I've not seen a better backpack designed with such great features for a child to use while hiking.  Take a look at what we experienced with the Deuter Junior Backpack. Deuter Junior Backpack Features Deuter backpacks are of excellent quality, made of nylon fabric with ripstop threads.   The Deuter Junior Backpack is lightweight, and the buckles are sturdy but still easily opened by young … [Read more...]

Colorado National Monument Hiking With Kids

If you ever find yourself in Western Colorado, be sure to check out the Colorado National Monument.  With beautiful red rock terrain, and even some wild mountain goats running around - this is an outdoor hidden gem, with a nice variety of trails for you to enjoy hiking with kids. Colorado National Monument ~ Hiking With Kids There are two entrances to the park, an east and a west.  Currently the entrance fee is $10 per vehicle, or free with a National Parks pass.  Be sure to grab a map at the drive-by entrance station on the way in.   If you have a specific length and type of hike you are interested in, ask the ranger working the booth for suggestions of a trail. Be aware that you can't bring dogs along on the trails, even on a leash.  And bring plenty of water, as this can be a high temperature area. If you enter from the west, you'll get to pass through a couple of tunnels.  My kids always find this exciting.  (Ok... I do, too!)  After about 5 winding miles of road, you will … [Read more...]