5 Tips for Hiking with Family & Friends

Hiking - A Great Way to Get Together & Get Fit Hiking - A Great Way to Get Together & Get Fit

Fitness, fresh air, togetherness, and fun! Here are 4 tips to make your hike enjoyable

Get Together, Get Fresh Air & Get Fit!

Hiking with family and friends is a great way to get fit, breathe in some fresh air, and spend time together. Here are 5 tips to help make your hike and enjoyable experience:

Find a Trail

The best source for finding well-maintained and marked trails is TrailLink.  This excellent online resource provides a massive searchable database of trails with free maps, descriptions, photos, reviews, and even downloadable GPS data.  One of our favorites hikes is along a "Rails-to-Trails" path.  These old railroad beds have been repurposed as hiking and cycling trails and are typically flat and smooth with stunning views.

Stay Hydrated!

Have each person carry a bottle filled with water or sport drink.  Some bottles are designed to be comfortably carried on a walk or run and can even hold a cell phone.

Carry a Backpack

Carry a small, lightweight backpack with some trail trekking essentials like healthy snacks, a cell phone, sunscreen, camera, and a few small bandages. The backpack is also a great place to put your sunglasses if you are on a heavily wooded trail with little direct sunlight. And remember to place any trash in the backpack for disposal later.

Check the Weather

It may sound obvious, but always check the weather before hiking. I once headed out to hike on a beautiful sunny day only to find myself in a downpour with water literally gushing down the trail, making for a slow and muddy return to my car!

Be patient

Be patient with family and friends who are a bit slower or tire more quickly on the trail. Hiking is certainly about fitness, but more importantly it is about sharing time together outdoors and making memories. On nearly every hike our family has been on, I've given at least one of my children a "piggy-back" ride on a portion of the trail.

Brian DeLay

Brian DeLay is an airline pilot living in the Midwest with his wife and three children. As an avid runner and cyclist he has completed numerous half-marathons, marathons, and cycling "century" rides, and serves as the race director for the Run for the Ridge 5K. His favorite activities are those he shares with his family. Visit Brian on Google+

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