Thursday, May 30, 2013

Backpacking - Getting Ready

Preparation is always half the battle. When backpacking with our children we find that if we are prepared with good gear everything seems to go so much smoother. In an effort to be useful to those of you just starting to backpack with your family here is our list of must have items.

1. Good water filter - reduces the amount of water you have to carry and therefore reduces weight
2. Down sleeping bags
3. Sleeping pads
4. Backpacks with padded hip belts
5. Backpacking stove
6. Cooking pot
7. Fuel for stove
8. Lighter
9. Lightweight backpacking tent
10. Headlamp
11. Walking sticks for kids...it does wonders:)
12. Extra underwear
13. Extra socks
14. Extra set of clothes
15. Spork
16. Toothbrush and toothpaste
17. Thermals if it is going to be cold at night
18. Down jacket (they compress small and are lightweight)
19. Trail snacks...a plethera of trail snacks (food does wonders for little tired people)
20. Dehydrated meals
21. Toilet paper
22. Shovel
23. Plastic bags for garbage and to carry out what needs to be carried out...like used toilet paper :)
24. Chaco or keen sandals for camp
25. Sunglasses
26. Sunscreen
27. Bug repellant
28. Camera
29. Good sturdy hiking boots
30. First Aid kit containing mole skin for hot spots or blisters
31. Chapstick
32. Nalgene water bottles
33. Dice game
34. Biodegradable soap
35. Hand sanitizer
36. Rope to string up wet clothing or food in bear country

We often take our GPS and go geocaching along the way or when we are at camp for a fun activity. The kids love it and it lends itself to some exploring.

Most of all, when the kids need a break, we take a break. It is that simple. A great time is had by all when the kids are happy.