Hike it Baby is so thankful for all of the past year’s Hike Hosts who volunteered their time to bring families together and enjoy the outdoors. This organization could not be possible without the amazing people who motivate others to join them on hikes submitted to our calendar each day. In honor of these generous Hike Hosts, we are proud to give back during our 13 Days of Giving with some fantastic prizes donated from our sponsors. Lucky winners were drawn from the long list of hosts who submitted events to the Hike it Baby website from Jan-Nov of this year.
Here is a roundup of the prizes that these hosts won during our 13 Days of Giving!
Hike Host winners share their thoughts on hosting hikes for their communities:
My number one tip: bring spares, especially for new moms who have young wee ones or who haven’t hiked before. A spare cloth diaper or two, a onesie, some sunscreen — all go a long way for a nervous, new mom hiker! I absolutely love hosting hikes in my area because I love challenging myself and my family to get outside more, and I love encouraging other families to do so, too. It is great knowing my hikes allow for my neighbours to learn new hiking spots and to make connections in their community.
When I first had twins, I felt very isolated, because I wasn’t welcomed at most moms’ groups without having a second set of hands. Starting a HiB branch let me connect with other moms in a way that I could and that I loved. I could always wear one baby on the front and one on the back, all while getting out of the house, being active, and introducing my twins to the true beauty of New England. I have met all of my closest friends through the HiB community that we now have!
I’ve been consistently hosting hikes with Hike it Baby for over a year and a half. It has been awesome getting to meet so many different people and explore so many different places. I love the flexibility of being able to choose when, where, and how often and that being able to change as our family grows and changes!
For me, hosting hikes worked well when I designed the experience around the evolving needs of my children. My toddler is a little adventurer, [who is] no longer content to ride on my back, and making space and time for him to explore seems like the natural response. So we left adult-paced hikes behind, but found we were able to stay connected to our Hike it Baby community by leading weekly kid-led hikes and unstructured play times, and these ended up being my favorite Hike it Baby experiences to date.
I have learned that hosting hikes is nothing to be nervous about, most who join us are just looking to have fun, explore, and meet new friends–so the pressure is off! I am always reminding myself to turn off my anxious feelings, and just enjoy showing off a fun park or trail that might be new to someone that day.
Hosting hikes with Hike it Baby (and becoming a Branch Ambassador) has made what could have been a really difficult transition–moving to a completely new place with a toddler while pregnant–sooo much better! It’s still been hard, but hosting hikes has basically forced me to get out there and meet new people, stay active and get my daughter and myself outside on a consistent basis. Thanks, HiB!!
Hikes don’t always work out the way I envision them, but I love the accountability associated with hosting hikes because I can be certain that the adventure will begin.
Hosting hikes motivates me to get outdoors, especially now that I am back to work full-time. It’s a great way to spend time with my child and get exercise!
We are always happy when Hike it Baby families come to ‘Little Hands Can’ activities. Such a great way for the community to get involved in helping each other!
I was nervous about hosting a hike at first, but once I started I couldn’t (and still can’t) stop! The butterflies that came with hosting those first few hikes don’t begin to compare with the joy that comes from walking underneath trees and through open fields with like-minded friends who were once strangers.
I would say that hosting hikes brings the greatest benefits for the least amount of work. The kids, friends, and nature do all of the work for you.
Congrats to our major prize winners!
I enjoy hosting hikes year round, but especially during the quarterly HiB30 Challenges. During this past November Challenge I hosted a weekly walk along a popular paved path. By doing so I added almost 15 miles to my log and it made getting our miles and time in so easy!
I joined Hike it Baby in January 2016 and there wasn’t always something on the calendar for my local branch. I knew that the group would only be what members put into it so I decided to invest. By jumping in and leading hikes, I am able to encourage other families to get out and share my knowledge of trails in the area.
I was so nervous to host, but my husband wanted to be able to join so we started an evening hike a few months ago and it was so worth it! Anyone considering hosting a hike should try it out, you could end up making awesome friends for you and your kids!
Hosting hikes for your community is not only fun and easy to do – you are automatically entered to win monthly Host a Hike prizes and the annual 13 Days of Giving at the end of each year. Submit a hike to the Hike it Baby calendar today and inspire other families to get outdoors!