Child Carriers or Child Backpacks
Child carriers are a great way to bring your young children out for an adventure. You can strap them in safely and carry their weight more efficiently than carrying them in your arms and more comfortably than piggyback style. The child carriers fit like a backpacking backpack and help distribute the weight off of your shoulders and onto your hips.
This is the most efficient way to carry children on rough trails where strollers are not an option. Child carriers put the children right at the height of adults. From there, the child can see all of the same scenery as the adult. However, the child will feel the vibrations of your steps and will likely fall asleep.
Remember, just because it's easy to get the child further out into the backcountry doesn't mean you won't have to plan more such as snacks, warm layers and entertainment for your little one.
Jogging Strollers and Chariot Style Bike Trailers
If backcountry dirt trails aren't your thing, maybe a jogging stroller or Chariot bike trailer is the way to go. Unlike basic child strollers, a jogging stroller is designed to travel at higher speeds to let you stay up on your outdoor workouts. You can safely latch the child into the safety seat, adjust the handle bar then start jogging. The child is safe and happy and the wheels prevent you from having to carry the weight of the child.
If biking is your sport of choice, check out a bike trailer to safely pull your little one on bike paths, around the neighborhood or wherever you like to ride. If you're lucky, your kid will like taking naps in the trailer and you'll be able to peddle as many miles or more than you did before kids.
Figuring out how to get your young child into nature is only part of the battle, you'll need a plan for caring for your child in the outdoors and you'll want to avoid these common mistakes made hiking with kids. Don't worry, outdoor adventures only get easier as children get older and the work you put into it now may pay off in years of fun adventures with your child.