Walking with children is fraught with difficulties and concerns for many. It does not have to be. Once over the initial ‘I don’t want to go’ and once they are out and about they will almost inevitably enjoy it. It will also stick in their memory for many years after.
I have based my advice on primary aged children, in fact mine (back in the day). Once a child gets to the age of 12 plus they should be fit and raring to go on most of the walks on this website. Under 5 is nearly impossible. Below 5 a backpack offers an opportunity to go further. Whenever I see a parent with a child in a backpack I look on with admiration.
‘Boring’ is a popular comment on anything that does not involve some scrambling on the rocks, water or other things ‘of interest’. A nice wide ridge with splendid 360 degree views does not hit the mark (except with the parents). Neither does a path which makes its way up a gradual slope for more than half an hour. Walking with children has to be fun.
Afterwards they were happy as sandboys and keen to try another one. They will remember their walks forever.
Top Tip: Improve the flavour of your bottled water by allowing your daughter to drop a lemon bonbon she was eating in it at some point in the walk….
These walks are really for ages 5 to 12. Teenagers should be more than capable of the longer walks.
Enjoy your holiday walks
Hello Jonathan, you gave us some fantastic advice (“us” being myself and my 10 year-old son, who broke his arm just a week before his first ever trip to the Lakes).
So, out went the Pike and Gable but that was all for the good because we roamed the Loweswater fells and hardly saw a soul. You did say Barrow was a fantastic first-time walk – again, spot on, although Knott Rigg and Ard Crags from Newlands Hause (the car does the first half) pushed it close. Only rain – the first of the week – prevented us going on from Barrow to Outerside.
Doing Haystacks the “wrong way” up Scarth Gap meant a bit of one-arm scrambling at the end but by strolling on to Brandreth we were again alone on the fells. Not bad for August!
Really like your website and thanks again for your advice. The boy is hooked and we will go up again soon.
Kind regards, Max Stocker
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