Monday, September 10, 2012

Take time to select hiking footwear for kids

If a child’s feet hurt, the hike is over, so getting the right footwear is worth the effort.

Making sure the footwear fits before hitting the trail also is worth it. If you’ve gone a few weeks without hiking, that’s plenty of time for your children to grow, and they may have just outgrown their hiking boots. Check out their footwear a few days before going on the hike. If it doesn’t fit, replace it.

For flat, smooth, dry trails, sneakers and cross-trainers are just fine; but if you really want to head onto less traveled roads or tackle areas that aren’t typically dry, you’ll need hiking boots. Once you start doing any rocky or steep trails – and remember that a trail you consider moderately steep needs to be only half that angle for a child to consider it extremely steep – you’ll want hiking boots, which offer rugged tread perfect for handling rough trails.

Read more about day hiking with children in my Hikes with Tykes guidebooks.