Last weekend we took advantage of warmer temperatures and planned a family hike to ‘celebrate’ Valentines Day. Though we are not big fans of Vday, but it was a long weekend too. And we usually plan a few family activities during long weekends. So this hike covered both the occasions. Moreover dining out at fancy restaurants on Vday itself is something we never do as all the good restaurants are overly packed with much longer waiting times. I would rather create a fancy meal at home instead !! I did that too. My cooking expeditions from that weekend on another blog soon.
We picked up “ Palmer Trail’ around the Garden Of The Gods park for our hike. The reason we picked up this trail was because I have hiked that one earlier and so I knew the trail is kid friendly. Besides, it has many exit points and with kids we needed that kind of flexibility.
We hiked for about 80 minutes on the trail and then took one of the exits and hiked for another 20 minutes within the GOG park to reach the car parking. The complete loop is much longer but kids got tired. The trail was quite muddy and parts of it was still covered in snow. It was quite an adventurous hike as we hiked on wet mud and the snow which were quite messy and slippery most of the time. Luckily none of us fell which BTW was my biggest concern. There were quite a few viewpoints along the trail. We got to see many beautiful views of the Garden Of The Gods park while hiking.
In case you are also planning to celebrate your special days hiking with friends/ family, here are few helpful pointers:
- Watch the weather of the trail you want to hike.
- Get a map of the trail. This is important if you are new to hiking or to that particular trail.
- Know your capabilities and pick up a trail which you or your family can hike without any major discomfort. It’s quite normal to get sore muscles after hiking . Remember more than exercising , you want to make good memories with your friends/family.
- Pick a trail which is not too far especially in case you are planning a day hike with kids.
- Educate yourself about wildlife. It’s quite common to encounter a mountain bear/lion ( In Colorado ).
- Pack the essentials – water, snack, fruit/ energy drinks ( if you like), bandaid , chapstick , extra scrunchies , pepper spray – just in case.
- Don’t litter the trail. Or I shall say leave no trace behind !
- Take pictures when you can but don’t block the trail for other hikers. Usually there are nice viewpoints alongside the trail.
Hiking on our special days is a very recent tradition I started on my birthday last year. Read more about my birthday hike here. I think it’s one of the better activities to do as a family. Not only we get our endorphins going, we also create some good memories along the hiking trail. And we are so close to nature which is always a boost for our mental and physical well being.
Have you ever hiked on your birthday/anniversary or other special occasion ? Would love to hear from you.
Have a great week ahead !