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Essential Safety Tips for Hiking With Kids

Posted on 24 March 2022

As springtime brings warmer weather, longer days, and lush greenery, more and more families will be hitting the trails. Hiking is a great activity for the whole family, but it's important for parents to know how to keep their kids safe while spending time in nature. Here are 4 ways you can prepare for hiking with kids during your next outdoor family adventure:

Protect From the Sun

Any time you go outside, but especially when you embark on a long hike in sunny weather, it's important to protect yourself and your kids from the harmful effects of sun exposure. Too much sun can lead to painful sunburns in the short-term, and contribute to skin cancer and premature aging in the long term. The good news is that there are simple ways to protect your child's skin, like using broad-spectrum sunscreens or dressing in sun-protective clothing that blocks UV radiation. You'll want to look for clothing with a UPF rating of at least 30, and the higher the better.

Stay Hydrated When Hiking With Kids

Whenever you exercise outside, especially in the warm summer months, you're going to lose hydration through sweat. Don't forget to replenish that hydration by drinking water or sports drinks at regular intervals along your hike. Overdressing can also cause dehydration and heat exhaustion. On warm days, you'll want to wear light, moisture-wicking clothing. This gives sweat an easy way to evaporate, allowing your body to cool itself down naturally.

Pack the Essentials

Before you reach the trailhead, make sure that every member of your family is ready for the day by preparing packs filled with the essentials. These should include water, snacks, a small first-aid kit, emergency contact numbers, and an emergency whistle. Bring what you need, but don't pack too heavy when hiking with kids. That goes for your outfits as well--choose shoes and clothes that are lightweight and allow for easy movement.

Make an Emergency Plan

If your child gets separated or lost while hiking, it's important that they know what to do. Tell them to find the nearest visible location on the trail and stay there. They can blow on their emergency whistle or call out for help until an adult arrives. Dressing in bright visible colors is another great way to prepare for emergencies. Bright colors allow your child to be spotted more easily if they get lost, and make it easier for your kids to keep you in their sight.

Find More Safety Tips for Hiking With Kids

It's easy to have outdoor fun with the whole family as long as you take these simple steps to prepare. If you're looking for new gear for your next outing, Little Leaves offers collections of family-friendly clothing that are sun-protective, moisture-wicking, lightweight, and come in a variety of vibrant colors--all the ingredients you need for a safe and fun adventure.


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