Whether you're exploring the great outdoors of your town or you're travelling internationally to see the world, hiking is a great way to immerse yourself in nature and to take your baby outside for some nature-loving.
Although it can seem pretty straightforward, you'd be surprised at how many things you need to consider when preparing your little one for a hike. From choosing an adventure baby carrier to taking the essentials—being well prepared is the secret to a successful hike, no matter where you are.
Some parents take their little one on their first hike even at six to eight weeks old, and most of the time, they go into the hike unprepared, leading to some blunders. Sure, you could have "everything" you need, but remember—Mother Nature may have other plans.
If you're planning to take your baby out on a hike, we've created a guide that will help you reach your destination. Here you'll find a list of tips and tricks that will prepare you for the hike. We'll also include a checklist that will help you prepare your baby essentials, along with some FAQs that parents ask about taking their baby on a hike.
If you're ready for your adventure and can't wait to take your baby with you, keep reading!
Why Should I Take My Baby on a Hike?
One of the biggest reasons you should take your baby out on a hike is that you get to get out of your house. Trust us—many new parents forget the benefits of stepping out of their home, breathing in the fresh air, and glorious sunlight.
The great thing about hikes is that anyone can do it, making it the perfect outing with your little one. Additionally, when you carry your little one with an adventure baby carrier, you'll reminisce about your pre-baby life as your baby snuggles close to you throughout the journey. Not to mention, it's a pretty good workout too!
Many people forget that nature can also lift your spirits in so many ways, allowing you to forget the stressful situations at home and breathe new life into you and your baby's bodies. Fortunately, you can do this in your town and even better if you do this in a foreign land.
Essential Tips to Remember When Hiking With a Baby
Tip #1: Give Yourself Time to Heal First
Sure, heading out on your first adventure can be pretty exciting, but moms have to remember that their bodies have been through a lot. With that said, you must take the time to heal before you head out to the great outdoors.
Many first time moms can get pretty anxious about heading out again because it wasn't easy to do when they were carrying their little one in their womb. But even if you're eager, it's best to wait it out until you're healed.
Tip #2: Every Hike is a Win
There's no doubt that you may not even finish the hike when you head out with your little one. But remember, this hike is entirely different from your previous hikes because this time, you have a precious baby with you.
Although you won't get to finish every hike, you start, make sure to celebrate your wins because, first of all, you're in nature—that's the biggest win you could get!
Tip #3: Prepare for Your Hike
When we say prepare for your hike, you should really plan the whole adventure and have a checklist with you. Trust us—you'll enjoy the hike more when you have a solid plan.
For example, plan your hike schedule around your baby's eating and sleeping schedule. With that in mind, also consider the time it will take you to get to and from the hiking trail. Considering all this, you'll get to schedule stops for feeding, diaper changes, and more without any worries.
As for your checklist, make sure that you have everything ready the night before. It's easy to forget some essentials when you're excited to head out, so make sure that everything is packed and laid out for your hike.
Tip #4: Make Sure Your Baby is Wearing the Right Clothing
One of the most important things to consider when hiking with your baby is to make sure that they have the right clothes to ensure they're happy and comfortable. Since your baby won't be moving much, you'll need to add some extra layers to your baby.
Besides adding some layers, make sure to pack a rain cover to protect your baby from the sudden downpour and strong winds. And if you'll be sweating, your baby will most likely be sweating, too, so make sure you pack extra sets of baby hiking clothes, socks, and booties to keep them warm.
Tip #5: Use the Right Baby Carrier
Another crucial item that you need to take during hikes with your baby is an adventure baby carrier, such as the Onward Adventure Baby Carrier. The Onward Adventure Baby Carrier is designed to meet the needs of active parents and can ensure protection and comfort for long periods.
The carrier has exceptional shoulder and back support, making the baby feel weightless while you go out on a hike. Not to mention, it's easy to take off and put on, just in case you need to deal with some nappy issues.
The great thing about this carrier is that it provides you and your baby fantastic comfort as you hike through various terrain, thanks to its breathable and durable material. And after a long hike, you'd be happy to know that it's pretty easy to clean and wash, too!
Tip #5: Be Prepared to Feed Your Baby During the Hike
Hikes can take a while, especially when you're with your baby, so expect that you might need to stop and feed your little one before continuing your hike.
If your baby is a formula- or breastmilk-fed baby, make sure you have some ready in a travel bottle, so you're good to go. For breastfeeding mamas, make sure you bring breastfeeding gear so you can feed your baby comfortably.
If your baby has started with solid food, make sure you have some easy-grasp food like bananas or blueberries. Another option is some sweet potatoes or teething wafers that are easy to dissolve. Also, make sure to pack them in reusable food pouches so you won't leave any mess.
Tip #6: Have a Nappy Changing Mat With You
Nappy disasters are unavoidable, and because of this, you must bring a changing mat with you so you can easily change your baby's nappies, even when you're out on the trail. Besides the changing mat, make sure you have a wet bag with you, some extra nappies and clothes for those unexpected blowouts.
Baby Hiking Gear Checklist
Along with all the helpful tips above, we've also created an essential hiking gear checklist to help you pack for your big adventure. Here are some of the things you shouldn't forget:
- Bug spray
- Rain cover
- Snacks or milk
- Adventure baby carrier
- Extra hiking clothes
- Changing mat
- Nappies and wipes
- Wide-brimmed sun hat or umbrella
- Hiking boots
- Warm hats and mitts (for colder hikes)
- Wet and dry bag
- Breastfeeding cover
As mentioned earlier, you'll want to pack all of these items a day before your hike so you won't be scrambling around at the last minute or forget something while you're in the middle of a hike.
Frequently Asked Questions About Baby Hiking
Every parent can feel a bit wary when they take their little one out into the world, but doing so can help improve you, your partner, and your baby's quality of life. If you're worried about taking your baby out on a hike, here are some questions that most parents ask that could help ease your worries.
Questions #1: Can We Go on a Hike With a Baby?
The short answer to this question is yes. Yes, it's absolutely fine to go on a hike with an infant or baby. The real secret here is to come prepared and lower your expectations.
It's perfectly normal to not finish a hike with a baby in tow because the needs and comfort of your baby is your priority. But even with that, heading out with your baby is a good idea; just remember the tips we mentioned earlier!
Question #2: What Age Can a Baby Go in a Hiking Backpack?
Ideally, your baby should be able to sit upright on their own before you can let them in a hiking backpack. Babies around six months old can do this, so it's best to wait 'till then. This will ensure their comfort and security, and you can hike well knowing they're safe.
Question #3: When Can I Take My Baby Hiking?
Truly, you can take your little one on a hike any time—it's really when you're feeling up for it. If you have a baby that's a few months old, you can take them on a hike with a stroller for maximum comfort and protection. Eventually, you can take them on a baby carrier.
Remember to have low expectations but to celebrate your wins—every hike is a memory that you'll cherish for a lifetime.
Question #4: How Should I Dress My Baby for the Hike?
Layers, layers, layers, your baby needs a lot of them. But of course, you need to ensure that they're still comfortable and that you can easily adjust it while you're out on the hike.
Since your baby won't be moving much, it's important that you keep them warm and that they dress warmer than you. Additionally, make sure you're also wearing clothes that you could use to protect them from the rain, wind, and harsh heat of the sun.
Question #5: Is It Safe to Take My Two-Month Old Baby on a Hike?
It's perfectly safe to bring your two-month-old baby on a hike. This can be fun for your baby too, because they'll be happy to be a carrier and near you. The great thing about this is that they may sleep on and off during a hike, so it's really about keeping your baby comfortable throughout the whole adventure.
With that said, you must have a reliable baby carrier with you to ensure not only your baby's comfort but yours as well. Remember—you'll be walking on different terrains and elevations, so it's crucial that you carry your baby snugly during the whole hike.
The Bottom Line: Taking Your Baby Out on a Hike is a Great When to Kickstart Years of Unforgettable Adventures
Many parents are eager to take their babies out on their first hike. And although this may be an exciting experience, it's always a good idea to come prepared and ask important questions to ensure that you and your baby are ready for the hike.
All you need to do is to ensure that all your baby essentials are well in place—from your adventure baby carrier down to your baby's extra nappies and snacks. Having all the essentials within reach will take your hiking adventure to the next level, making you and your baby excited for the next one.
Trust us—once you have all these baby hike tips and essentials down, you'll surely plan your next hike the sooner you come home!
How Can Onward Help You?
If you're looking for a baby carrier for hiking, Onward has exactly what you need.
Onward offers a high-quality adventure baby carrier along with baby accessories fit for hiking, fitness, and the great outdoors. We collaborate with various manufacturers in defence and military so we can guarantee that our products are constructed with the same standards as our Aussie heroes in uniform.
If you're ready to go for a hike, make sure you have a reliable and durable baby carrier with you. Check out our baby courier today and elevate your hikes with your little one!