3 New Ways To Enjoy Your Favorite Trail
Finding new places to go outside is definitely my preference but I’m not against frequenting our favorite trails due to time crunches with pick ups and drop offs to school for my big kids and a toddler who needs to get some shut eye during the day. If you live in an area that doesn’t have a lot of access to greenspace, it’s also nice knowing there are ways to keep you coming back without the redundancy.
Start from another entrance
If you have a favorite trail, it’s likely you also have your regular entrance or spot to meet with friends. If the trail only has two start points, switch it up each time you visit so you’re not getting bored with entering from the same place. Your littler ones might recognize where you start, but at least there won’t be any expectations. If there are secret spots that lead up to the trail, those are great to start from, because you give a sense of adventure before your hike. I like suggesting that we go through a “secret passageway” to add a little mystery.
Go off-trail or change terrain
Our favorite trail is two parts rocky and half dirt. We will start at different places, but we noticed there were some smaller paths that went off the main one. We decided to try the smaller trail which descended down. We discovered a creek area with some pools of water running through it. Another way to go would be to go uphill–choose another trail that goes up where you can see another view or have to climb. Or maybe the trail you’re on changes once you get closer to water. Taking the trail less traveled can open up a whole new adventure each time you visit. Stopping by features like muddy puddles, rock climbing areas or caves will also make hiking at the same place more memorable.
Select a theme for your hike
Surprise your kids and tell them you are taking them on a themed hike. Some examples can include:
- Stream exploration/waterfall hike
- Mud-pie making
- Bird/insect watching
- Geocaching hike
- Scavenger hunt
- Meditation hike
When there’s a theme, no one will hardly dwell on the fact that it’s the same place they’re used to going to all the time. I find that using this technique is effective because there will be more interest in the activity and get lost in the fun.
What are some ways you like to savor your most-loved trails? Share them with us in the comments below and good luck exploring more!
Love this! We just went off trail, on one of our favorite hikes, and it was an awesome experience. We also were able to fit in some compass work, since it was an area I knew well and felt comfortable in.
That’s awesome! Compass work–definitely something we need to invest more time in. How did you incorporate the compass in as an activity?
Setting a theme is a great idea. Sometimes we’ll play the alphabet game when we hike a familiar trail. We have to find something that starts with every letter in the alphabet in order. If forces the kids to really look and take their time.
The Alphabet game sounds like fun, we’ll have to try it. We also do “favorite things” which is we name what are favorite color, favorite food, etc is.