Having a baby can be a wondrous and rewarding experience, but it comes with compromise. There are fewer things you’ll be able to do on a daily basis, and nearly everything that happens will be colored in some way, shape, or form by the fact that you have a little one at home.
That doesn’t mean you need to give up some of your favorite hobbies, though. One of the quickest things people abandon upon becoming parents is a hiking and the great outdoors. I’m here to tell you that although it will be more challenging than usual to bring an infant with you, it is far from impossible. You get the benefit of getting some time out of the house and both of you get to spend some quality time together. Much like planning adequately for your own hike, there’s some planning involved when a baby is going to come along.
Related Read: Tips for hiking with a baby
How To Prepare For and Adventure Hiking With Baby
Pick The Right Carrier
You aren’t going to want to hike the trails with your baby in your arms or strapped to your back with duct tape, a proper baby harness is going to be necessary if you are going to brave the wild trails. Decide whether or not you’re going to want to go with a harness that’ll secure your baby to the front of your body or one that will secure to your back. Beginner Baby Care says that you should be considerate of how you are going to keep your child enclosed for long periods of time, so this needs to have a lot of thought put into it.
A carrier that fits on your back will be more comfortable for your baby and allow them to see more of the scenery, but they will typically extend past your head, and you might not be used to having to duck down for your baby’s safety. You’ll have more cognizance of your baby’s status with a front-facing harness, but just know that it will hinder your range of movement just a slight bit.
Deal With All Outstanding Needs Before The Hike
Babies are notoriously labor-intensive creatures. Before you hit the trails, make sure that all of your little one’s needs are handled properly and promptly. Ensure they are properly fed and hydrated, and it is best to time your hike right after a nap and bathroom time, so they won’t get uncomfortable halfway through the hike. You don’t want to be stuck with a baby with a soiled diaper when you’re almost up the mountain, there’s hardly any changing stations up there.
If your infant is in a bad mood or is giving you signs that they might not be up to being stuck in the outdoors for an extended period of time, it is probably best to postpone the hike until a day when they are more up to it. In this case, if a toddler cries in the forest, you’ll be around to hear it.
Like everything involving children, hiking with a baby is very much possible but just requires a bit more planning than usual. You are completely responsible for your infant’s safety and enjoyment during this time, so don’t skimp out on a single aspect. It’ll be much more enjoyable for you and your baby if you take the due diligence to make sure you get everything right. Good luck, and have fun making memories of the trail!