The Evolution of our Family Hikes (Gearing Up For Spring With L.L. Bean)

26Feb
The Evolution of our Family Hikes (Gearing Up For Spring With L.L. Bean)

My boys are darn good hikers.  Not that they have a choice.  Since Stephanie and I started RVing with them four years ago we have spent over a hundred nights camping, and dozens of days hiking.  When they were just one we threw them in the truck, packed up the pop-up camper, and headed to Vermont and Maine for 16 days.  We were determined to do some serious family friendly hiking with them, and we did.

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Of course that meant carrying them in our hiking packs.  So we carried them–and we carried them joyfully.  After a long winter of working and parenting toddlers our first hike on the Great Head Trail in Acadia National Park was absolutely intoxicating.  The boys felt light on our backs.  While the cool Atlantic breezes and the smell of Pine, Birch, and Maple made us fall in love with Maine all over again.

A year later we decided to head to New York State for our big summer trip, and we hiked extensively in the Catskills and Finger Lakes.  Hiking became a hybrid experience for the boys.  During our hike along the Gorge Trail at Watkins Glen State Park we carried them in our packs again, but only when they were tired or the trail was dangerous.  More often then not they wanted to walk. We were happy to oblige.  Our boys were evolving as hikers–and who were we to get in their way?

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Flash forward one more summer to Vermont to watch the evolution continue.  We researched family friendly hikes and with the help of some great campground owners we found lots of them.  We hiked until our hearts were filled with joy and our lungs were filled with fresh Vermont summer air.  We hiked Mount Putney and we hiked Mount Tom.  And the twins hiked right alongside us every step of the way.

They hiked…

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 and hiked…

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 and rested…

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 and hiked some more…

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 and they reaped hiking’s great rewards…

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Wes was, of course, being carried by Stephanie in her Ergo, but that’s a story for another post.

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We carried the boys in Maine, carried them sometimes in New York State, and hiked alongside them in Vermont.  So what step is next in the evolution of our family hikes?  Backpacks for the boys of course!

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On a recent trip to L.L. Bean I spotted these sharp “Sprout” backpacks for kids and I couldn’t resist.  The colors and design looked sharp, and as alway with L.L. Bean, the quality looked great.  I felt like the boys deserved them after doing so many hikes with such great attitudes.  And now they could carry their own stuff!  The boys were pretty excited too, but instead of asking when we could go hiking again, they asked if they could pack energy bars in them and bring them to school the next day. I told them that these backpacks were special and they would have to wait until our next hike to use them.

This winter seems like it will never end.  But it will.  And I can’t wait to share a couple of those energy bars with the boys on top of some beautiful mountain in New Hampshire.

Onward.

2 Comments

  1. Joe

    That descent hike from Mt. Tom was epic!

    • livelylittlecampers

      Yes! The kids all impressed me that day!

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