Alana lists the ups and downs of what camping means to her when it involves children. Does any of this sound familiar? Camping can have its ups and downs. You can make the planning easier if you use sites such as Ayoopa for gear rental and HipCamp to find your perfect camping location!


Camping Is... (With Children)

Camping Is…

  • Eating and cooking out of doors
  • Spending the entire day outside
  • Waking up in the morning to my daughter’s blue eyes and beautiful smile next to me
  • Early morning walks while the family still sleeps
  • Coffee that tastes better outside
  • Seeing both a sunrise and sunset on the same day
  • Doing nothing and not feeling guilty about it
  • Simplified daily routines
  • S’mores
  • Watching the kids spend hours digging in the dirt
  • Reading books by firelight after the kids are in bed
  • Sleeping in the cool night air
  • Leaving the burdens of home behind
  • Exploring new places

BUT, Camping Is Also…

  • Tantrums at 7am in a quiet campground
  • Trying to get kids to sleep while the sun is still shining (thank you 10pm sunsets…)
  • Too much sugar and too many carbs for all involved
  • Late to bed + early to rise = whiny kids
  • Threatening to pack it all up and go home at least once a day
  • Epic meltdowns
  • Too much togetherness
  • Dirt in every crevice
  • Hauling poop in porta pottys to accommodate a child fearful of pit toilets
  • Waking often in the night to make sure everyone is warm enough and still in their sleeping bags
  • Two hours to set up camp… three to take it all down
  • Days of prep to go… then days of unpacking, washing, and repacking when we get back
  • Constantly keeping kids out of the campfire
  • Discovering some other part of the tent trailer that fails to work properly

Like so many other things in life, camping with kids isn’t perfect.  Thankfully, we don’t need perfection to love it!

Photo Credit: Melissa Hollingsworth

Camping Is... (With Children)

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Alana Dimmick is the branch lead for Hike It Baby Eatonville. She is wife to a park ranger, and full time mom to Eli (6), Riley (4), and Isaac (3 months). Alana currently lives in Mount Rainier National Park, Washington.

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