Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Many kid activities offered at Yosemite N.P.

Activities abound at Yosemite National Park for teaching children about the natural wonders before them as well as the environment in general.

Among the kid-friendly programs are:
g Junior Ranger/Little Cub – Children ages 3 and up can be sworn in as a Yosemite National Park Junior Ranger or Little Cub by participating in several different programs. Those ages 3-6 can earn a Little Cub button by completing the Little Cub Handbook, which can be purchased at the Happy Isles nature center, the visitor centers in Yosemite Valley, Wawona, and Tuolumne Meadows, and the Big Oak Flat Information Station. Those ages 7-13 can garner a Junior Ranger patch by completing the Junior Ranger Handbook (available for purchase at the same spots selling the Little Cub Handbook), collecting a bag of trash collected, and attending a guided program.
g Ranger-led programs – A variety of nature and history programs meant specifically for children and families are held throughout the year across Yosemite, primarily from May through September. A schedule for the various programs with their dates, times and locations, is available online.
g Youth programs – A variety of programs and camps for teenagers are offered at the national park. Among the many programs are hiking, helping field research projects, and skiing. Application must be made to participate in the programs, which are offered by NatureBridge.

For descriptions of 100-plus children’s games and activities that can be done before the hike, on the drive to the park, during a hike, and afterward, see this author’s book “Hikes with Tykes: Games and Activities”.

Learn more about national park day hiking trails in my Best Sights to See at America’s National Parks guidebook.