Saturday, May 28, 2011

Spring Hiking with Kids

This is a long post--just warning you in advance! Yesterday I decided to go on a spur-of-the-moment hike, so we packed some "picnic snacks" and headed to a nearby trail. Desert Boy carried a little backpack of his favorite snacks and juice and "activities"--just in case he felt crafty out on the trail. (I figure if he's willing to carry it, he can take it--within reason.)

When we got to the trailhead, Desert Boy was ready to get going--in his two right foot shoes. He didn't seem to mind at all.

 We had fun looking at all sorts of things. Desert Boy really thought we should climb up to a cave and eat some food in a shelter. He was a bit concerned about the storm clouds. I told him we were going to keep going down the trail to the first stream crossing. That was about a mile up the trail and I figured a good distance for a beginning of summer warm-up hike.

The trail had a gentle incline, but I could feel it with Emma on my back. We looked for interesting things to talk about so that Desert Boy would keep hiking. Then we saw something very interesting:
A big gopher snake in the middle of the trail! It quickly slithered off.
The trail had some obstacles, like this fallen aspen tree. Desert Boy decided he'd rather go under it than over it. Going under required some belly crawling. But there were bigger obstacles ahead.

We reached the (first) stream crossing. Usually the stream is just a trickle, but with snow melt the stepping stones were submerged. So I crossed on the little log. Then Desert Boy gave it a try.

He started out well, keeping his balance. But the log was really narrow, and it wasn't flat.

Still, he hung on.
But then he started slipping.
And down into the stream he went. Then he tried again. How did it go?
Here's the answer.
We didn't need to go any farther, so it was picnic time! Desert Girl was glad to get down.

Desert Boy curled up in his sweatshirt and played rolypoly. We had seen some in the garden the other day, and he thought it was great fun to roll around like a rolypoly. He also enjoyed eating lots of snacks.

After our snacks I lifted the kids back across the creek and then it was time to head back to the van. Since it was down hill, I figured Desert Girl could walk--and she did, more than half way.

Desert Boy was now dressed in his sweatshirt and a rain coat wrapped around his waist. He liked leading the way. We had a little talk about how he had to stay close, where he could see me, because there were mountain lions around. He didn't like that because he thinks that since he is four years old he can do anything he wants, but after a little more talk about mountain lions, he agreed.

We reached the fallen aspen, and this time he decided to go over. Desert Girl thought it was a fun place.

Desert Boy was happily eating candy, so he was willing to pose for a photo.
Then it was time to walk again.

Desert Girl thought the flowers were nifty, and some just at the right height for closer inspection.

This walking outside is fun!
Desert Girl isn't exactly a great walker yet, so she bobbled and weaved and fell a few times. Even when she fell, she was all smiles.

A pollinator finding some food. Some time in May was Pollinator Week, but I missed it this year.

Desert Boy went behind a tree, so Desert Girl had to follow, even though the branches were low. After thrashing for awhile, Desert Boy had to go in and help her out.

Back on the trail, Desert Boy let out one of his ear-piercing train whistles. If any mountain lions were around, they knew we were there! I told Desert Boy if he ever gets lost, he needs to stay put and pretend he's a train. We should find him in no time.

Desert Girl found some colorful Indian paintbrush and investigated.

Then she found another flower. Still pictures don't quite capture all her excitement, so here's a little video-be sure to have your sound turned up to hear her talking (babbling):

Desert Boy had a little camera and he started imitating me taking photos of flowers. Desert Girl was there to help, of course.

Then Desert Boy found some old toys in his pocket and was absolutely delighted. That was almost all he talked about for the rest of the hike!
We crossed a bigger creek to get back to the parking area. The water is just starting to get a little brown. It should be getting a lot darker in the next few weeks as the snow continues to melt! The high mountains are still very white.

And that was the end of our hike. Desert Girl slept on the drive back, but Desert Boy kept talking and after a bath to warm up, we went to the playground to "help" the other kids pulling out weeds. Needless to say, he slept very well last night.


Dessert Survivor said...

too too cute. So glad to see you got out for a lovely hike. Desert Girl's walking skills are certainly improving. You go girl!

Anonymous said...

Soo cute. My kids are no longer that little but I definitely take them hiking when I can....

jhami said...

lol That is great - and I believe my kids and I were on that same trail the day before yesterday! Ha ha! I love the photos with matthew crossing the creek too :D

Anonymous said...

Hiking is always better with snacks. Way to be prepared!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

blogger templates