More often than not you are reading about MY advice on getting tykes into the outdoors, MY experiences and trip reports about taking J-Man on adventures and MY tips on getting tykes into nature.
Today I am starting something new.
I am super stoked to start this new feature here at Adventure Tykes.
I will be spotlighting one adventurous family every month. I have sent the family a questionnaire that they have answered, sharing with us their adventure stories, their lessons learned and their tips and experiences on how they adventure as a family. I am hoping this will inspire, motivate and encourage all of us to get outside with our tykes.
Meet our first Adventure Family:
Here’s what they said about being an adventurous family:
1. How many tykes in your family and how old?
Just 1 tyke, and he is 2 and a half.
2. Have you always been an outdoorsy family?
As a couple, my husband and I were always avid outdoor-folk, so it was only logical for us to stay outdoors once C came along.
3. What’s your favorite outdoor activity to do as a family?
We’re a family of rock climbers, so most of our outdoor activities revolve around scaling rocks. But on a typical weekend climbing trip, there is usually camping involved, as well as a good amount of hiking too.
4. How old were your tykes when they went camping, climbing or hiking for the first time?
Hiking – 12 days old
Climbing – 6 weeks
Camping – 10 weeks
5. As new parents were you anxious, scared, apprehensive or excited to go on your first outdoor adventure with your tyke?
Yes to all three, but mostly excited – we kept our expectations low so that we wouldn’t be disappointed, but our first family forays into the outdoor world were better than we’d ever imagined!
6. Share a favorite story of hiking, climbing or camping as a family.
One of our earlier climbing trips ended up being a washout. It was drizzling when we woke up in our tents Saturday morning, and the thunderstorms started a couple of hours later when we already had ropes set up at the cliff. C was only 3 months old, and we didn’t have any rain gear for him. I had hiked him in in a front carrier, so I just strapped him on, and zipped us both up into my rain jacket. As we scrambled around packing up our gear so that we could wait out the storm in a nearby overhang, he didn’t even make a peep. I remember thinking what a horrible mother I was for taking my kid out in the rain like that, as I sludged my way to the overhang with everyone else. We got to the cave and I laid C out on our only dry blanket while we spread out the rest of the gear for it to dry. That was when I heard the giggles. Apparently C thought the storm was so funny that he just couldn’t contain himself. His laughing quickly went viral and pretty soon everyone was laughing, even people that weren’t with our group. It was then that I learned that my little guy was not made from sugar, and certainly wouldn’t melt if he got a little bit wet!
7. What advice do you have for NEW parents who want to camp, climb or hike with their tykes for the first time?
Do it NOW! Don’t be tempted to wait for a “better” or “easier” phase to do it. Each age will have its own unique challenges, but each age will also have its own unique rewards, so don’t miss out! Oh, and it probably goes without saying, but bring a camera!
8. Did you receive any advice or wisdom from other parents about adventuring outdoors with tykes that have made things easier?
Two of my old climbing partners (and the first people I ever knew that climbed as a family with an infant) always maintained that you could do anything with a baby that you could do before – but you had twice as much stuff and everything took twice as long. We’ve certainly found that to be true in our case as well. In my opinion, that’s a worthwhile price to pay!
9. Do you have a piece of MUST have gear that you never leave home without besides the necessities (ie. Backpack, tent, sleeping bags, etc.)?
Our Kelty backpack lets us get C in and out of the crag safely and efficiently. It’s also a great nap-inducer, and because of the kickstand at the base, its easy to take the pack on and off without waking the precious cargo inside.
10. Any parting words for parents that will encourage them to get outdoors with their tykes?
There will be obstacles, especially the first few times before you really get your logistics worked out right. But don’t give up! The memories you’ll take from your family adventures will be well worth any hardships, and the learning opportunities for your son/daughter will definitely be appreciated one day!
I love this! Reading about the Lineberrys and their adventures makes me want to head outside with J-Man right now. Pretty motivating and inspiring for sure!
Erica Lineberry is a rock climber hailing from North Carolina, sponsored by Trango and Athleta. She is passionate about getting her family outdoors and inspiring other families to do the same. Erica writes about her family’s adventures on her blog, http://cragmama.com , where she also posts gear reviews, interviews, and offers tips and ideas for outdoor family fun.
Do you have any questions you would like to ask the Lineberrys or have any comments for them?
If you are an adventurous family and want to be featured or if you know a family you think should be featured shoot me an email at melissa(at)adventuretykes(dot)com.