My Guide to a Countryside Walk with a Baby in Tow

My Guide to a Countryside Walk with a Baby in Tow

We’re very lucky here in the TwoTinyHands household that we live in an area abundant with countryside and gorgeous views.  I only need to walk 5 minutes and I’m in the fields but yet I have 3 supermarkets within a similar distance too!  Lets just call that the bonus of living in a small but central town.

Dave & I have always gone out walking together and since having the Robot we’ve tried to not let this stop us either.  If you’ve been a reader on my blog you’ll have read about some of the many many outings that we’ve been on over the past 6 months.  I thought now would be a good time to share with you some of the things we’ve found useful for getting out on a family walk.

Dave with robot in back pack hugging Karen pulling a funny kissing face

My Guide to a Countryside Walk with a Baby in Tow

Getting out the house is always time consuming with a baby and we’ve narrowed down the time it takes to about 20 minutes.  Knowing what to take is the key:

A baby carrier

Be it a rucksack carrier, baby wrap, buckle carrier, it really doesn’t matter, it is personal choice.  The rucksack carrier is great for long days as we can pack extra but if we carry in a wrap one of us has a rucksack on our back.   If you know your route is flat without stiles then a buggy is okay too.

A grab nappy bag

This is an essential for us, we use a drawstring bag with all the nappy essentials. A few nappys, wet wipes, small change mat, nappy bags, a vest, trousers and socks. This is normally set ready to go, we can chuck it in the rucksack knowing we have enough for a bum change while we’re out.

Spare clothes

Warmer weather means we set off in T-Shirts. We live in England, the weather can change! Pack a jumper for all and waterproofs if forecasted showers.  Don’t want to get cold!

Bowscale Tarn

Food & Drink

WATER that’s essential. As for food, it depends on how long you are going out for. Over lunch? Pack a sandwich. Just a short walk?  Take a snack, fruit is always good. We always take a little extra for the baby now he’s on solids. On longer trips we take a flask of tea for us grown ups.

On your feet

We always wear walking boots or shoes. The countryside has lots of uneven ground.  Foot protection is paramount!

Sun protection

Yes I know it’s England, but the sun catches us out. In go the sun cream and sun hats.

Entertainment

Eh? I hear you ask. A little notepad and pen to jot down or draw findings is a great idea. This could be a phone too. This links in with your camera!! I use my phone as both!  Since we’ve started geocaching I take a pen, penknife and swaps too.

A Map

The UK has such a large network of footpaths. We like to explore them. Ordinance Survey maps are the best for this. We use the orange explorer maps.

Robot reading Map

These are the basics for our walks and everyone is different and has different needs.  Sometimes we hardly take anything with us if we’re close to home and know we’ll only be gone an hour.  Other times we plan to be out all day.   It’s all about assessing what you’ll be doing and re-assessing to make sure you are making the right decisions.  It’s also a good idea to remember the Countryside Code:

Follow the Countryside Code

  • Leave gates and property as you find them
  • Respect other people
  • Protect the natural environment (no litter please)
  • Keep dogs under control
  • Enjoy the outdoors – plan ahead and be prepared

The Robot is 14 months now and although we still carry him for walks we can see in the distance the change to him being a toddler.  We are very aware that he’ll want to walk himself one day.  This is going to change how we walk and where we go.  We hope to manage it with a combination of carrying and walking but know that change is on the horizon!

Do you go walking with your family?   If you’ve an older family, how have you managed the transition to older kids?   Do share any more tips I’d love to hear them.

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59 Comments

  1. We do go for walks but since we dont have woods in ouyr area its always the beach for us. But we do bring the same essential suncream, extra clothes (esp extra clothes) for my son when he decided to have a swim which is always, food. And the transition is slow but nice. I didnt have a sling so before he would just walk and our journey would be really really slow. Now that my son is 6 our walks in the beach is still the same. Slow. Not because he still walk slow but he is just really interested in everyhting that he finds on the beach =)

    #countrykids
    Merlinda Little (Glimmer of Hope) recently posted…Just Catching My BreathMy Profile

  2. Great tips. I always have a grab bag with wipes and nappies etc ready to go that I can easily switch between bags depending on where we are going and it’s amazing how much fun can be had with simple paper and pen. We used a backpack style carrier with my son when he was little but our daughter has always hated them so since she was born we had to stick to places we could get the pushchair. Luckily we have a pretty all terrain pushchair anyway (essential when you have dogs to walk too) so it has never stopped us getting out to some fabulous places.
    #CountryKids
    Alana – Burnished Chaos recently posted…Our Visit to Beamish Open Air MuseumMy Profile

  3. We were big walking fans before we had Max, and up until he was about 17 months we carried on with him in the baby carrier. We fell at the hurdle of toddlerhood though, as we found that he would just cry and cry in the carrier, but didn’t want to walk – he wanted a ‘pickup’ from Mummy – or Daddy would do in a pinch. Hoping we can start getting out once he’s a little bit older again! #familyfun
    Katy – Hot Pink Wellingtons recently posted…Finding the right work/mum balanceMy Profile

  4. We love family walks..we only really did pram friendly ones when Leo was a baby buy ever since he started walking we have been exploring all over the place. We love walking in the woods and running around of the beach, we are lucky to live right by the New Forest so there are loads of lovely walks by us xx #familyfun

  5. We are passionate outdoors people and love a good family hike. This is all solid advice. I still shake my head at the number of people who ask me for directions in Snowdonia who haven’t got a map on them! We’re currently doing the Hike it Baby 30 challenge for September and I run a dads and kids hike group so we’ve clocked some good miles with the kids already this month.
    Potty Adventure
    #FamilyFun

  6. Walking with my daughter now she’s nearly three is so much harder because she wants to walk everywhere but it soooo slow. Then there’s the inevitable ‘I want a carry’ after about 10 minutes. My husband and I did use to go geocaching before the Child was born though so maybe we should give it another try with her in tow. #familyfun

  7. We have a lot of countryside near us too but haven’t ventured out with the baby yet as she has been walking for a couple of months now and we’d probably get about 5 metres in an hour at her pace. I still use a sling occasionally so should try a nice country walk with her in that 🙂 A x

  8. Great post with some great ideas! My daughter is 17 months old and is already wanting to walk everywhere. It is actually making life a bit more fun as she is exploring and touching all the different textures that nature brings us. The drawstring bag is a great idea!! #FamilyFun

  9. Lovely pictures! We’ve never used a baby carrier so that’s limited us a bit, and now we’re in the toddler stage. We do like to get out into the countryside though, but nowadays it’s somewhere flat where we can take in the scenery and let our little girl have a bit of a run around. And if a picnic is involved, all the better! #familyfun

  10. It takes a Mum who goes out on such trips to come up with a comprehensive list like this. I love the idea of the draw string nappy bag with everything in it ready to go. Do you refill it at the end of a day out so it is always ready to go or pack it before you leave? Change of clothes is another great idea. I always used to keep spare clothes int he car for those nappy explosions or impromptu seaside visits.
    Thank you for sharing your tips at #CountryKids
    Coombe Mill – Fiona recently posted…Happy Families and Go Fish with your Favourite NameMy Profile

    1. isntitpretty

      Thanks Fiona, I tend to fill the bag up before we go nowadays because it normally just needs some extra nappys, he rarely uses the spare clothes now. I am sure this will change when he starts walking and stomping in puddles!

  11. What a seriously lovely idea! Walking with kids: in the countryside – who knew!!
    We have only just begun having little adventures now our youngest is 2 and big girls is 5 – yes i know, I’m a wimp. but now we take the dog and our beloved pop up tent and have little adventures. Nothing that would require a map or compass you understand, but we consider ourselves explorers nonetheless!!
    Big Love, L
    #FamilyFun

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