Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Fun game for drive to trailhead: High or Low

"Is the number 601?" "That's high." Photo courtesy of ivanvlee8/Photoree
Once you’ve got your children excited about the hike, you next have to get them to the trailhead, probably in a motor vehicle. Sometimes those drives to a national forest, nature preserve or state park can be long. You can keep kids’ spirits up by playing games on the drive there.

One great activity combines and tried-and-true game with map reading: High or Low.

The topo map you take with you on a day hike will contain a plethora of numbers – contour intervals, highway numbers, elevations for summits. A good way to help kids learn to read maps and to become familiar with the area you’re going to hike is to have them play High or Low in which they must use a number form the map.

The game begins with the first player selecting a number on the map. The next player then guesses a number, to which the first player must say if it is “high” or “low” compared to the map number. The number guess and a “high” or “low” response is done for each additional player. Up to three rounds of guesses can be made; if after the last player makes a third guess the number hasn’t been determined, the first player wins.

Pass the map onto the second player and repeat.

Materials: Topo map

Ages: Five and up

Learn about more than a hundred other hiking diversions for kids in Hikes with Tykes: Games and Activities.