Sunday, October 21, 2012

Hiking LeVeaux

Fall is such a beautiful time to hike in the woods.  We usually try to get up to the shore/hiking trails in mid to late September (at least ever since I quit teaching that's true, when I was teaching, we would go in mid October at break).  We were there on the late side of the "colors" season this year, but it was still spectacularly beautiful!


Noah the leader.  He usually wants to "be the train engine" when hiking.
On top of the mountian

Fantastic vistas even though all the leaves are down.  Can you imagine if the branches were yellow and red?!

Sometimes 4 year olds need to stop hiking and roll around in the grassy area next to the trail.

Somebody tired out a bit, good thing dad is strong and patient!

 A bit of advice for hiking with pre-schoolers...  Bring "enticement" junk food.  We forgot that on this hike and found ourselves struggling to coax him along the trail a couple of times.  Combine the snacks with a bit of a scavenger hunt - find/count 4 trail markers then you can have a ________.  Scavenger hunting is great even without the food.  Hunt for trail markers and try to be the first one to spot each.  Noah's a pro at finding and calling out the "blue stripes".  A few other trail games we play is train - who is the engine, who is the coal car, who is the caboose?  This works well on easier sections where it makes the most sense to walk single file.  A new one we invented this time is hide and seek - one member of the party races ahead a little ways and hides behind a tree, then the rest of the hikers have to find them.  Dad finds the best hiding spots and we'll miss him if we don't employ our best observation skills, cause you know he didn't go too far and is just off the trail somewhere! 
In addition to motivators along the trail, it's important to be comfortably dressed.  You can't usually find (or don't want to afford) hi-tech hiking gear for people who will grow out of it within just one season.  So using layers and carrying back-up options is very important - more on that here.

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