12 Tips for Taking Your Tween or Teen Backpacking

12 Tips for Taking Your Tween or Teen Backpacking

We always backpacked as a family. Before her first steps, my daughter Michal (pictured) rode in a child carrier on someone’s back. As a toddler, she hiked slippery bog bridges and fished in Utah’s High Uintas. At age 7, she hiked 10 miles to our campsite and at her request earned a “backpacking trophy” (which we created by attaching a cardboard “backpack” to women’s bowling trophy. At 10 she took a wrong turn and found her own way back to the trailhead.

Then came age 12, and things changed. We got eye rolling and a sigh when a hike was proposed. She went—reluctantly—and managed to stay far ahead of us most of the day.

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