We were planning to tell you about this a while ago…Our son, Tomi was born last August, and we took him hiking for the first time when he was five weeks old. How was it? Awesome! Any more questions? Let’s see.
Can you even hike with a newborn baby?
Sure. Well, of course, it’s not that obvious. But given that both you and your baby are healthy, and you feel well enough to take a hike, there’s no reason not to.
On the other hand, it’s not a race, you don’t need to hurry. I don’t believe in such thing as an “easy childbirth” even though mine was called one. 😛 Your body needs rest for a couple of weeks. But then for me, taking short hikes with Tomi after five weeks was a lifesaver.
I like hiking and being in nature, anyway, and Csaba and I hike quite often. I hiked throughout my pregnancy, too. And being at home with a newborn baby, not leaving the flat (not even the bedroom, actually) and not sleeping more than an hour in one shot for weeks was crazy. I had to get out.
Our dear little boy was a special case. (And yes, I’m perfectly aware that every baby is a special case.) He spent the first three months of his life almost constantly in the carrier. Day and night. Except when I was breast-feeding him. This fact made our hiking days not much harder than our usual days, because we carried him all day long, anyway.
On the other hand, hiking while carrying a baby is much more fun than walking around in the living room while carrying a baby at 2 AM in the morning. So we both enjoyed our hikes. And our Tomi? He soundly slept through them in his first months.
What do you need to take your baby hiking?
A carrier. And his mum to feed him. That’s it. 🙂
Well, okay, not exactly. But a newborn baby doesn’t need that many things. He needs his mum, he needs to be fed and diapered. So we had some clean nappies and some clean clothes for “emergency cases”. And we had a blanket that we can put down anywhere in the forest so that we can change his nappy, or I can feed him while lying next to him on the blanket.
First remark: it was a pleasant, sunny autumn. Second remark: always have more outfits of clean clothes than what you think you need. Because while you enjoy the panorama from the peak, your baby’s working on his digestion. Then you notice a strange smell and realize that you need that extra outfit, even the clean pair of socks.
What else is left? Your clothes and your food. Those are the easiest to forget, and I’m talking from experience here. Wherever we went, we usually had all the baby caring stuff, but it happened that we forgot to pack our food or our sweater.
Was it worth it?
Without any doubt, it was. I’m so happy that we enjoyed carrying him when he was lighter than our backpack. It didn’t take long to change.
Okay, seriously. The first months with Tomi were probably the most challenging months in our lives. Taking short hikes in the mountains gave us a chance to spend time with each other, talk, laugh and hold hands while Tomi was sleeping in the carrier. (No real hugs though because I carried him in the front.) Hiking gave us a chance to enjoy each other’s company at a time when we were usually too busy or tired (or both) to do so at home. And it was our best chance to get out and go somewhere.
Our next topic: hiking with a baby who’s getting definitely heavier than a backpack.
Have you hiked with your baby? Anything we missed?
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