Camping with kids is really no big deal. People tend to make it a big deal....but if you do it right, it's like sleeping at home. Seriously. There are a some things we do that make it work:
- Using tents that are easy to set-up. We only use tents with two poles. There is nothing worse than stressing about set-up and tear-down.
- The kids that sleep well go in their own tent and the kids that don't sleep well, sleep in our tent.
- The adults sleep cots....the kids sleep on the ground. After 20 years on the ground...we're too old for all that on-the-ground shenanigans.
4. Bring stuff for your kids to do in the mornings -- Books, games, paper for drawing...it's your best chance at "sleeping in."
5. We're kind of an ambitious go-getr type family. We used to hammer it right from the moment people woke-up until the sun set. These days...we take LONG mornings. We won't get to the base of the climb or hike until 9am. Enjoy the sights and sounds of beautiful mornings
Camping is about RELAXING. For us it's about getting off of a time-schedule and into a different rhythm.
One of the things we love about Red Rock National Park is the mix of great hiking and great climbing. There is something for the whole family to get into!
Elizabeth and Josiah are able to top-rope most 5.6's outside these days. We are so proud.
When we are not climbing, we find a hikes to go on. We have two criteria for a hike: a nice view and easy enough that our two oldest can walk it under their own power. These days....they can hike nearly everything...it's kinda amazing.
Once we get back to camp for dinner...we try to keep everything as normal as possible for the kids. Normal routines are the key: prep responsibilities are still in place, clean-up responsibilities are still in place, bed-times are still in place, etc. We've found that when we keep the routines at least semi-normal we can last longer living outdoors.
I love watching my kids get into camping. They've been campaign their whole lives. They know how to do it and do it well!
...it's hard to believe that Elizabeth is going to be 8 at the end of the year! She was 3 months old on her first climbing/camping trip to Lovers Leap in Tahoe, California.
These are good days!