9 Tips For Climbing & Camping With a Kid

Your wife just announced she is pregnant and your family is about to grow by plus one, but all you can think about is what happened to our summer of climbing, camping, and road trips? Yes, your life is about to change, but getting out and pulling down doesn’t have to grind to a halt. My wife and I have an 18 month old now, and have managed to still get out most weekends since he was born. The key is to accept that some change is inevitable, and with a few modifications you can still camp and climb.  Here are some tips that we’ve found helpful:

  1. Try to stick with the schedule of naps and feeding, which makes for a smoother day.
  2. Bring a pack and play with an umbrella. Not the lightest, but worth it once you get there for hands free babysitting and napping. Use those extra cams to make it level.
  3. Shorter approaches = more climbing and less hiking.
  4. At camp, use that slackline or some webbing to rig up the “Johnny Jump Up”.
  5. Baby wipes have thousands of uses.
  6. Let the baby nap or sleep in the car so that barking dog in the next campsite doesn’t shorten her nap to 5 minutes, but watch the temps and stay nearby.
  7. Don’t push the season, as tent camping with a 6 month old when it is negative 20 out is not enjoyable for many.
  8. Shop thrift stores for a baby down suit, as nothing is better for a baby and still allows them to move and crawl around when it’s cold in the tent.
  9. RELAX and have fun, they grow up fast!

So, stop riding the waves of the internet and go pack your sleeping bags and climbing gear for a fun weekend of climbing and camping with your new addition.

This is Cooper Best’s first guest post for SplitterChoss.com. He lives in New Castle and is happy to be back on the Western Slope camping and climbing with his family after a few years on the Front Range. Next time you see a a guy carrying an orange haul bag and lugging a pack and play to the cliff say hello!

5 Responses to 9 Tips For Climbing & Camping With a Kid

  1. 10. When your baby cries just think of it as a bear deterrent.

    David April 12, 2010 at 9:18 pm
  2. Nice! Just keep that kid out there.
    Very timely for me. My fiancee goes for an ultrasound next week.
    I went on a week long hike/carry when I was 3 months old. The stories make it sound traumatic, but it didn’t make me stay away from the hills.

    Craig April 13, 2010 at 5:05 am
  3. I have a 7 year old. He has been camping/hiking/climbing since he was a year an a half old (When we moved to Colorado). When he was very young, he loved all of the new things he could see and touch. The only issue was that he would pass out on the way back down the trail, and I would have to carry him plus my pack. Now that he is 7, he get’s “Bored”. The key I have found is to play games on the approach like I spy, or make up some adventure. He is a good climber, but never likes to go with us now. The key to getting him going, is to bring one of his friends along to climb. This motivates him quite a bit for a day of climbing.

    Have fun.

    Josh April 14, 2010 at 4:54 pm
  4. Carried my 3.5 year old for 2.5 of a 5 mile trail in tahoe to a 80+ foot waterfall. Better exercise and still worth the view at the end of the trail!!!

    chris April 23, 2010 at 9:46 pm
  5. We love camping with our 4 year old and our 10 month old. The 9 things mentioned are all great advice. I would also recommend camping with other young families. Misery loves company, right? 😉

    Brian June 4, 2010 at 6:23 pm
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