These 5 tips on hiking with a baby will help parents enjoy their time spent outdoors. These helpful tips cover some tricks we learned along the way.
Hiking with a baby in the Rocky Mountains can be a lot of fun for the parents. It is hard to say how much good it is for the baby, but the parents can definitely benefit from the exercise and fresh air. I think it is good to begin getting in the habit of hiking as a family. These tips will help you enjoy your hike, but make sure you read these 9 items to bring on a hike with a baby.
5 Tips On Hiking With A Baby
These tips are intended to be used for parents that are hiking with a baby (up to about a year old).
Feed The Baby And Go
When you arrive at the trailhead I would strongly recommend feeding the baby just before you start hiking. That will allow you more time hiking when you start as opposed to having to stop 10 minutes into your hike to feed the baby.
Start With Easy Hikes
If you are new to hiking you should definitely start with easy hikes in the beginning. Easy hikes are shorter hikes that do not have too much steep climbing or descending. Easy hikes also have a good, wide trail to walk along and do not require you to negotiate rocks or walk along steep drop offs. As you do more hiking and become more comfortable you can gradually move on to harder hikes.
I guess the key is really to stay within your comfort level. Sticking within your comfort level will keep you and your baby safe and allow you to enjoy yourself without being too worried.
Plan Your Hikes During Nap Time
At first this may seem like it doesn’t make sense, but we found nap times were the best times for hiking. If you start hiking just before they usually take a nap they may start off the hike in the carrier grouchy or even crying. But, after crying for a bit they will most likely just fall asleep because they are tired and it is their nap time.
Then while they are sleeping you can get in some good hiking and cover a lot of distance. Hiking with an infant at this stage will allow you to hike just as fast as you could without an infant and faster than with a toddler because a toddler wants to walk and not ride the whole way.
Use Hiking Poles
Prior to having and hiking with our baby I always thought hiking poles were weak and not needed because I was young and strong. However, as I began to hike with my precious baby strapped to my front or back I quickly realized that it was simply not OK for me to slip and fall.
I began to use hiking poles and soon realized how great and helpful they are for hiking. They make it easier to carry a heavier load. Additionally, they help to keep you from slipping or falling because they give you two more points of contact with the ground.
Use A Small Blanket As A Cover
You can bring along a small blanket when you go hiking with a baby. It is super useful for changing diapers on or using to sit/lie down on. Or you can wrap it around the baby in the carrier to keep the baby warm, dry, or out of the sun.