I’ve always loved being in the woods. My dad likes to say that’s because he started bringing me on hikes when I was a little baby, and he continued to do so through adulthood. I feel alive in the woods. I feel comfortable in the woods. I feel peaceful in the woods. My favorite way to exercise is by hitting the trails for a trail run. My husband feels the same way.

We started hiking with our daughter when she was a baby too. We bought one of those hiking backpacks and we’d set her in it and head off. Talk about super cute! To my surprise, the movement of the backpack would actually sway her to sleep.

Recently we went on our first family hike without the backpack. And it.was.awesome.

As we approached the entrance to the trail she kept saying “I LOVE hiking!”

I lent her one of my camelbak backpacks because she wanted to wear a backpack like daddy. Seriously, a kid with a camelbak on = SO CUTE:

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I was so impressed by her ability to navigate the roots and rocks. We took her on a technical hiking path, not a rails to trails, so I wasn’t sure if she’d be falling all over the place or not. Each time we approached a tricky spot she’d say “I can do it myself! I’ll be steady.”

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This girl was CHATTY on our hike too! She kept telling us about all the birds and other animals that live in the woods. She loved picking up random stuff, like acorns and flowers, and tucking them away in her backpack (mental note: clean out the backpack).

We stopped at a big rock for her to have a drink and snack. She was just so incredibly happy to be hiking!

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It’s fun to teach her things about hiking too. My husband kept telling her to focus and be steady and I kept reminding her to pay attention to where she’s walking. She even added a rock to a cairn as my hubs explained to her what that is.

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I was impressed that she walked almost all the way to our turn around spot. She did get really tired though and ended up having to be carried during the hike back but the whole time my husband carried her she had her arms wrapped around his neck for an epic looking snuggle.

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I’m so glad that our little family has such a love of the woods. I have really fond memories of hiking with my dad and siblings & hope that my daughter will too.

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