We went bikepacking with kids over the weekend. This is a really rewarding thing to do and they had a lot of fun. These are a few notes of what we learnt and what we would do next time. We have gone for long journeys before, but never stayed over night.
Ride at their pace:
We covered 10miles in approximately 3 hours with a café stop half way. Take lots of breaks for snacks and water. Kids run out of enthusiasm so breaking the journey up into micro breaks helps to keep it fun. Water and snacks. The Café stop was a good chance to have a treat like cool lemonade and cake sitting in the shade.
Pushing is expected:
Pushing up the tricky hills stops the racing and level things out. Kids will compete – but also have melt downs.. If one kid is struggling, make the other push or slow down by pushing. You task is to keep everyone happy.
Let them go:
Make it fun, let them explore. Yes they might not be riding- but they are having fun, climbing exploring and discovering. Get them to look at the view, take photos, sit and relax.
Learn tips and tricks for next time. What worked and what did not?? We will probably do something similar next ride – we will travel lighter. Pick a sunny weekend and not be afraid of cancelling or shifting the date. Next time we would have some escape routes – or a back up plan should something goes wrong. Take more layers of clothes… so that this can happen.
Bikepacking with kids is not as hard as it might sound. It is a Micro Adventure a short distance weekend get away. Its a chance for you to share a bicycle experience that will give your kids some adventure skills.