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Essential Gear for a Fun and Safe Adventure

Walking along the beach at the Bayside Oceanfront Resort Choice Hotel

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Ready for a family adventure that’s all about laughter and discovery? Hiking is one of our family’s favorite ways to explore the great outdoors, make unforgettable memories, and get our kids legs moving.

Whether you’ve got a baby in your arms or a teen eager to hit the trails, having the right gear helps turn your hike from ho-hum to a real adventure! We learned long ago that uncomfortable backpacks, ill fitting shoes, and unnecessary extras can ruin a family hike really quickly.

This article covers our must-have gear essentials to keep the whole family happy and safe, so you can focus on what really matters: enjoying nature and each other.

Essential Hiking Gear for Kids

The key to a successful family hike lies in the gear you bring along. From the right shoes to essential safety items, having the right equipment can make all the difference.

The Right Shoes: A Step in the Right Direction

When it comes to hiking, having the right shoes is crucial, especially for kids. Their feet are still growing and developing, so it’s important to provide them with footwear that offers support, comfort, and protection.

Walking The Badlands Trail Dinosaur Provincial Park
Our family hiking the Badlands Trail Dinosaur Provincial Park

Children’s Hiking Shoes

For those rugged trails and uneven terrain, a good pair of hiking shoes is a must. Look for shoes that are durable, waterproof, and have good grip. You don’t want little feet slipping on wet rocks or getting soaked in puddles. Brands like Merrell and Keen offer excellent options for kids.

Make sure the shoes fit well, with enough room to wiggle toes but not too loose that they cause blisters. Break them in before the big hike to avoid any on-trail discomfort.

Charles Kosman and Jordan walking the paths near Ixchel
Charles and Jordan walking the paths near Ixchel, Mexico

Sandals: The Summer Savior

When the weather is warm, and the trails are dry, hiking sandals are essential for the best kids outdoor gear. They’re breathable, easy to clean, and often provide good grip. Plus, kids love the freedom of sandals!

However, make sure to choose sandals designed for hiking. Regular flip-flops or beach sandals won’t cut it. Look for features like adjustable straps for a snug fit, closed toes to protect from stubs, and a sturdy sole for traction. Keen’s Newport H2 sandals are a popular choice among parents for their durability and protection.

Essential Clothing for Hiking with Kids

Dressing kids for a hike involves more than just throwing on a T-shirt and shorts. Layers are your best friend. Weather can be…

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