Hillwalking with Young Children

Discussion in 'General Fitness' started by Bagger, Jun 7, 2004.

  1. Bagger

    Bagger Guest

    My 5 year old son wants to come hill walking with me. I'm
    keen to encourage him and plan to take him up Conic Hill
    at Loch Lomond. Has anybody who's been through the
    process of taking their kids hillwalking any advice -
    apart from don't!!!!

    My hillwalking blog is http://bagger.typepad.com/
     
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  2. Ac

    Ac Guest

    "Bagger" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > My 5 year old son wants to come hill walking with me. I'm
    > keen to encourage him and plan to take him up Conic Hill
    > at Loch Lomond. Has anybody who's been through the process
    > of taking their kids hillwalking any advice - apart from
    > don't!!!!
    >
    > My hillwalking blog is http://bagger.typepad.com/

    I have mixed feeling about this......if they want to go by
    all means encourage them but in my own experience I don't
    expect too much and expect a fair bit of moaning n'all. My
    youngest wants to come along and then at some point in the
    walk he will suddenly decide "that's enough". I therefore
    tend to do smallish walks with him and only after he has
    nagged me enough for him to really want to come.

    My oldest is home for a few days but is recovering from a
    football injury - torn ankle ligaments - so this morning the
    three of us strolled up Skirrid - just enough for him to
    exercise his ankle and also not long enough for youngest to
    moan too much...well not much anyway.!!

    Views on the little hill are really splendid - I just hope
    my mate is up for some *real* exercise tomorrow.

    My youngest this morning up Skirrid.

    http://groups.msn.com/OnmyDayOff/shoebox.msnw?action=ShowPh-
    oto&PhotoID=75

    http://groups.msn.com/OnmyDayOff/shoebox.msnw?action=ShowPh-
    oto&PhotoID=74
     
  3. Bernard

    Bernard Guest

    "Bagger" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > My 5 year old son wants to come hill walking with me. I'm
    > keen to encourage him and plan to take him up Conic Hill
    > at Loch Lomond. Has anybody who's been through the process
    > of taking their kids hillwalking any advice - apart from
    > don't!!!!
    >
    > My hillwalking blog is http://bagger.typepad.com/

    My eldest son who is now 21, started walking with us when he
    was 8. What we discovered was that even though he had always
    been an active and reasonably fit child, he lacked stamina
    and got tired. We found that he ran of energy quickly, so we
    had frequent refuelling stops to eat something such as
    sandwiches, cake, chocolate biscuits and the like.

    This seemed to work with him, he and a mate are planning to
    do the Pennine Way this summer.

    Regards

    Bernard
     
  4. Mike Mason

    Mike Mason Guest

    My two children started walking with me at ages five and
    six. First time out was at their request and was Crib Goch
    and down the Pyg Track. This took two weeks of planning
    breaking the walk down into sections, making sure I knew
    where all the exit routes were and ensuring that the right
    equipment was carried. I enlisted the help of three other
    adults as well. The Children were well equipped with good
    walking boots, we have a shelf of kid's boots from tiny
    upwards, and good clothing including waterproofs.

    We waited for a couple of weeks to get a good forecast and
    at the first one did the walk. All a bit of an anticlimax.
    Both children did really well with no complaints and enjoyed
    the day out. The only minor source of complaint was the cafe
    wasn't open and couldn't we just continue round the rest of
    the Horseshoe. Started the day at 8.00am and back at Pen y
    Pass for 4.00pm. The kids really enjoyed the Pinnacles,
    which were taken over using a rope on the steep bits.

    Still have good memories of the day and the kids still talk
    about it even now, aged 23 and 22. Son still comes out with
    me when he can spare the time from his busy life in London.
    Daughter is far too busy working as a teacher now to go out
    too often but she does come out sometimes with us.

    Mike Mason

    "Bagger" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > My 5 year old son wants to come hill walking with me. I'm
    > keen to encourage him and plan to take him up Conic Hill
    > at Loch Lomond. Has anybody who's been through the process
    > of taking their kids hillwalking any advice - apart from
    > don't!!!!
    >
    > My hillwalking blog is http://bagger.typepad.com/
     
  5. Fran

    Fran Guest

    [email protected] said...
    > My 5 year old son wants to come hill walking with me. I'm
    > keen to encourage him and plan to take him up Conic Hill
    > at Loch Lomond. Has anybody who's been through the process
    > of taking their kids hillwalking any advice - apart from
    > don't!!!!

    Do take him! The only thing I'd say is that his expectations
    probably don't match reality, so be prepared for some
    complaining if the weather's not up to scratch or if he gets
    tired. Don't forget the length of his little legs, relative
    to yours. I don't know the Scottish hills at all, so I can't
    give specific advice; what I can say though is that IME it's
    definitely better to start them young. I waited for my two
    oldest to be 'old enough' before dragging them out, and
    neither are all that keen now; the youngest ones were taken
    out from very young, and are still reasonably enthusiastic.
    --
    Fran If you need my email address please ask.
     
  6. [email protected] (Bagger) wrote in
    news:[email protected]:

    > My 5 year old son wants to come hill walking with me. I'm
    > keen to encourage him and plan to take him up Conic Hill
    > at Loch Lomond. Has anybody who's been through the process
    > of taking their kids hillwalking any advice - apart from
    > don't!!!!

    Keep it simple - especially for a 5 year old. Mine
    haven't got much further than the Pentlands (up to around
    1700') yet.

    Lots of patience and the promise of chocolate at strategic
    locations.
    --
    Adrian
     
  7. In message <[email protected]>,
    Fran <[email protected]> writes
    >[email protected] said...
    >> My 5 year old son wants to come hill walking with me. I'm
    >> keen to encourage him and plan to take him up Conic Hill
    >> at Loch Lomond. Has anybody who's been through the
    >> process of taking their kids hillwalking any advice -
    >> apart from don't!!!!
    >
    >Do take him! The only thing I'd say is that his
    >expectations probably don't match reality, so be prepared
    >for some complaining if the weather's not up to scratch or
    >if he gets tired. Don't forget the length of his little
    >legs, relative to yours. I don't know the Scottish hills at
    >all, so I can't give specific advice; what I can say though
    >is that IME it's definitely better to start them young. I
    >waited for my two oldest to be 'old enough' before dragging
    >them out, and neither are all that keen now; the youngest
    >ones were taken out from very young, and are still
    >reasonably enthusiastic.

    Mine started at 8 months. [Not on his own feet admittedly].

    Someone on this newsgroup (Fran tells me it was her) offered
    the advice of a mile for each year of age and her advice is
    most sound. So I'd say stick an upper limit of 5 miles on
    the walk and 2000ft ascent. As it sounds like a first
    venture, I'd reduce this further. When Timothy was five he
    had become a regular walker and I found the above formula a
    top limit for an enjoyable day. Remember that as his legs
    are half your size he would really be doing 10 miles and
    4000 feet :). Also remember that speed will be less. I
    reckoned on Timothy doing a half Naismith (ie 1 1/2 miles
    per hour plus 1 hour for each 1000 feet of ascent). This was
    normally managed comfortably (sometimes we'd top a 2/3
    Naismith) and allowed for a lot more stopping than normal:
    funny shaped stones, playing in the burn etc etc.

    I would stress advice given earlier about shoving food in.
    Tim certainly didn't know when he was hungry and it came out
    as moans about the walk. Enter food; exit moans. And stick
    to decent weather (which may also mean rejecting days as too
    hot, of course).

    --
    Michael Farthing cyclades Software House
     
  8. "Bagger" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > My 5 year old son wants to come hill walking with me. I'm
    > keen to encourage him and plan to take him up Conic Hill
    > at Loch Lomond. Has anybody who's been through the process
    > of taking their kids hillwalking any advice - apart from
    > don't!!!!
    >
    > My hillwalking blog is http://bagger.typepad.com/
    >

    I started taking my sons when they were 7 & 5 (hillwalking
    as opposed to walking in Surrey, which they had done
    virtually since they could walk). My five year old loved it,
    my seven year old hated it. Now two years later, the elder
    one is getting better and certainly shows more interest in
    navigating and map reading, although he is always too quick
    to spot the short cuts. My younger son is a hillwalker.
    There is nothing for else to call him. Take him walking on
    the flat and he is tired and bored. Find a hill and the
    energy level shoots up as he shortens his step and just
    cruises up. We call him the Hill Rocket, which I think he
    kind of likes.

    I think the best advice is to find something that the
    children like to do on walks and give them a few breaks
    doing it. For my two, its food/drink breaks and a tree to
    climb. Stopping for ten minutes of climbing trees or
    boulders or whatever seems to give them a second, third and
    fourth wind. I suspect it is boredom. They also like going
    on woodland walks more than open walks, so I try to factor
    that in (although I am the opposite - I avoid woods like
    the plague as the views are short and navigation more
    difficult, so I have to spend more time on it and less time
    looking around).

    Buying them a walking pole each also helped. They don't
    really use it as a pole, but God help any Stinging Nettles
    or Brambles or whatever that grows along our route and
    threatens our way forward. Forward being a loose term when a
    child has a stick in their hands and something they are
    allowed to hit with it. On the footpaths of Surrey, beating
    nettles with a stick is a Good Thing, thanks to a lot of
    land owners who seem to use them to "do a Hoogstraten"
    (spelling?)

    Have fun, Paul
     
  9. C L Imber

    C L Imber Guest

    On 4 Jun 2004 03:38:58 -0700, [email protected] (Bagger) wrote:

    >My 5 year old son wants to come hill walking with me. I'm
    >keen to encourage him and plan to take him up Conic Hill at
    >Loch Lomond. Has anybody who's been through the process of
    >taking their kids hillwalking any advice - apart from
    >don't!!!!

    On Thursday 27th May I got all 21 children from my Year 6
    class (11 year olds) to the top of Cadair Idris. No moaning,
    no complaining. The secret was preparation. For five weeks
    before our trip from Lewisham to North Wales I had been
    telling the children about the challenge of "Our Expedition"
    to the summit of Cadair and how tough the walk would be.

    We walked slowly but steadily up the Pony Path, stopping
    regularly to allow everyone to catch up. About halfway up I
    insisted that each child eat something from their packed
    lunch. The ascent took 3 hours, due to one girl with nasty
    blisters the descent took almost as long.
     
  10. Bagger wrote:
    > My 5 year old son wants to come hill walking with me. I'm
    > keen to encourage him and plan to take him up Conic Hill
    > at Loch Lomond. Has anybody who's been through the process
    > of taking their kids hillwalking any advice - apart from
    > don't!!!!
    >
    > My hillwalking blog is http://bagger.typepad.com/

    I regularly walk with my two girls aged 7 and 3 and have
    taken them both since they were about 2 years old. You'll
    find that they are much slower than you would be - I reckon
    on an average speed of 1 mph and a maximum distance of about
    2 miles. A five year old might be a bit better in terms of
    stamina but probably more likely to get bored. To counter
    this it's good to try include some 'discovery' to the trip
    e.g. our local walks around the Goyt Valley in Derbyshire
    include a lot of history around a ruined former hall. The
    kids get to discover the ruins of former cottages, a
    graveyard containing the graves of former family members and
    a shrine that is still used today.

    --
    Andrew Whaley, author of :-

    Trailgauge - Shareware 3D GPS Mapping Software
    Free Download from http://www.trailgauge.com
     
  11. Gordon

    Gordon Guest

    Andrew Whaley <[email protected]> wrote
    >
    >I regularly walk with my two girls aged 7 and 3 and have
    >taken them both since they were about 2 years old. You'll
    >find that they are much slower than you would be - I reckon
    >on an average speed of 1 mph and a maximum distance of
    >about 2 miles. A five year old might be a bit better in
    >terms of stamina but probably more likely to get bored. To
    >counter this it's good to try include some 'discovery' to
    >the trip e.g. our local walks around the Goyt Valley in
    >Derbyshire include a lot of history around a ruined former
    >hall. The kids get to discover the ruins of former
    >cottages, a graveyard containing the graves of former
    >family members and a shrine that is still used today.
    >
    I've been promising to take my 70 year old blond for a
    look at the rhododendrons near the hall for a week or
    two. Do you have any idea what they are like? Have they
    already flowered?
    --
    Gordon
     
  12. pdroberts

    pdroberts Guest

    In article <[email protected]>,
    [email protected] (Bagger) wrote:

    > My 5 year old son wants to come hill walking with me. I'm
    > keen to encourage him and plan to take him up Conic Hill
    > at Loch Lomond. Has anybody who's been through the process
    > of taking their kids hillwalking any advice - apart from
    > don't!!!!
    >
    > My hillwalking blog is http://bagger.typepad.com/

    I have a nearly 5 and nearly 7 year old starting to walk
    with me. Echoing other comments aim to be realistic in your
    choice of route. Both mine recently climbed Plynlymon Fach
    from Nant-y-Moch 3.5 miles and 1100ft ascent but it was at
    the limit of the youngest. He slept all the way home.

    For "rules" I would add just these

    Get them used to carrying things (even if it is only a drink
    or spare top)

    Make the walk interesting and that means views so

    Make sure the weather is set well.

    Encourage I-spy as soon as you can it can easily fill in
    half an hour on the descent. Variants on bingo list of 20
    things to find are also a good one

    Walk slower about half your usual pace

    Start small and work up in ascent terms better to reach a
    small summit than have to turn round because said toddlers
    are too tired. And ascent is relative not actual.

    If you have a digital take photos at the summit to "show x
    you actually got there"

    Finally always leave them wanting more and be prepared to
    carry them for shore distances.

    Pete
     
  13. Gordon

    Gordon Guest

    Andrew Whaley <[email protected]> wrote
    >
    >> I've been promising to take my 70 year old blond for a
    >> look at the rhododendrons near the hall for a week or
    >> two. Do you have any idea what they are like? Have they
    >> already flowered?
    >
    >They've been out for a week or so, they're still
    >resplendant but on the turn so you'd best hurry. They are a
    >fantastic display, apparently the Grimshawe's planted
    >40,000 of them on the estate.
    >
    Thanks for that, I have only ever seen them in bud, but
    guessed they would be impressive in their prime. :)
    --
    Gordon
     
  14. Bagger

    Bagger Guest

    Adrian Tupper <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > [email protected] (Bagger) wrote in
    > news:[email protected]:
    >
    > > My 5 year old son wants to come hill walking with me.
    > > I'm keen to encourage him and plan to take him up Conic
    > > Hill at Loch Lomond. Has anybody who's been through the
    > > process of taking their kids hillwalking any advice -
    > > apart from don't!!!!
    >
    > Keep it simple - especially for a 5 year old. Mine
    > haven't got much further than the Pentlands (up to around
    > 1700') yet.
    >
    > Lots of patience and the promise of chocolate at strategic
    > locations.

    Thanks for the advice everybody. Lots of interesting ideas
    and food for thought. We 're giving it a go tomorrow!

    My hillwalking blog is http://bagger.typepad.com
     
  15. Kro

    Kro Guest

    "Adrian Tupper" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > [email protected] (Bagger) wrote in
    > news:[email protected]:
    >
    > > My 5 year old son wants to come hill walking with me.
    > > I'm keen to encourage him and plan to take him up Conic
    > > Hill at Loch Lomond. Has anybody who's been through the
    > > process of taking their kids hillwalking any advice -
    > > apart from don't!!!!
    >
    > Keep it simple - especially for a 5 year old. Mine
    > haven't got much further than the Pentlands (up to around
    > 1700') yet.
    >
    > Lots of patience and the promise of chocolate at strategic
    > locations.

    I threatened my one I'd leave them up there if they didn't
    stop being so lazy. It worked - he hasn't asked to come
    with me since!

    KRO
     
  16. Fran

    Fran Guest

    [email protected] said...
    > Mine started at 8 months. [Not on his own feet
    > admittedly].
    >
    > Someone on this newsgroup (Fran tells me it was her)

    Eh? Did I?

    > offered the advice of a mile for each year of age and her
    > advice is most sound. So I'd say stick an upper limit of 5
    > miles on the walk and 2000ft ascent.

    It's certainly a good idea, but I don't think it was mine
    originally.
    --
    Fran If you need my email address please ask.
     
  17. Andyp

    Andyp Guest

    "Gordon" <[email protected]> wrote

    > I've been promising to take my 70 year old blond for a
    > look at the rhododendrons near the hall for a week or two.
    > Do you have any idea what they are like? Have they already
    > flowered?

    Dunno about the ones you're talking about but I noticed some
    very fetchingly coloured ones close to Bristol on Friday.
    Looked to be in full bloom from the quick sideways glance I
    managed whilst trying to avoid the worst of the loose rocks
    on my bike. Must go back for a more civilised stroll one
    evening this week.
     
  18. > I've been promising to take my 70 year old blond for a
    > look at the rhododendrons near the hall for a week or two.
    > Do you have any idea what they are like? Have they already
    > flowered?

    They've been out for a week or so, they're still resplendant
    but on the turn so you'd best hurry. They are a fantastic
    display, apparently the Grimshawe's planted 40,000 of them
    on the estate.

    --
    Andrew Whaley, author of :-

    Trailgauge - Shareware 3D GPS Mapping Software
    Free Download from http://www.trailgauge.com
     
  19. Gordon

    Gordon Guest

    KRO <[email protected]> wrote
    >
    >I threatened my one I'd leave them up there if they didn't
    >stop being so lazy. It worked - he hasn't asked to come
    >with me since!
    >
    I took them up Kinder on a wet dismal day and made 'em eat
    their sandwiches in the rain. Good result - I was able to go
    off anytime so long as I didn't make them come with me.

    I had a couple of walks with one pal whose wife and sons
    wanted to go with him walking, so we only had two days out
    together. :-(
    --
    Gordon
     
  20. Gordon

    Gordon Guest

    Nick Pedley <[email protected]> wrote
    >
    >"Andrew Whaley" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    >news:[email protected]... SNIP our
    >> local walks around the Goyt Valley in Derbyshire include
    >> a lot of history around a ruined former hall. The kids
    >> get to discover the ruins of former cottages, a graveyard
    >> containing the graves of former family members and a
    >> shrine that is still used today.
    >
    >Sounds like my sort of thing, where is it near?
    >
    >Nick
    >
    From the north I go to Whaley Bridge, take the Macclesfield
    road, and there's a small lane on the left after climbing
    out of Whaley.

    If you come north out of Buxton on the Whaley Bridge road
    you will find a lane off to the left near a RH bend. This
    lane drops you down into the Goyt valley, and you will pass
    a small shrine at the roadside on the right before you start
    the steep part of the descent.
    --
    Gordon
     
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