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Old 05-05-2013, 10:00 AM   #1
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Camping with a toddler

We'll be camping for the first time with our 2 year old who has a knack for seeking out danger. Just wondering if anyone has any tips (short of keeping him in the rv all weekend).

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Old 05-05-2013, 02:37 PM   #2
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1. Don't let him out of your sight.
2. Leave him with a trusted relative.

We started taking ours at the 4-5 year old range.

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Old 05-05-2013, 03:06 PM   #3
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Camping with a toddler

We started taking our daughter when she was 6 months old. Keep a close eye on them especially around the fire. Camping with a little one is a blast when you see their eyes get big with excitement on seeing nature unfold around them. The whole camping trip revolves around them and their schedule ( naps and potty breaks)
Enjoy it while you can because they grow up all to fast.
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Old 05-05-2013, 05:00 PM   #4
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When we took the whole family, including new grandkids tent camping every summer, I started renting a pop up for my infant grandson and his 18 month old sister just to add a little safety for them since we were in bear country. The grandkids are now teen agers and still wanting to go camping in the Jayco. There is probably many things teens would rather do than spend a "boring" weekend with the ol' grandparents, but mine still look forward to it. It was a lot of work keeping them out of trouble, and sometimes quiet at night, but was and still is a great feeling to have them with you....take those kids as often as you can.
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Old 05-05-2013, 05:32 PM   #5
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We camp with small kids all the time. Between our (7,4,9mths) and two other families we camp with who's kids range from 7-2 y/o we have some experience.

Really its not a lot different than being at home with them. Keep an eye on them, have serious talk about fire/BBQ and continue to remind them. Keep knifes, axes, shovels, fire pokers out of reach. We require life jackets of the kids when near water. But IMO most importantly lots of sun screen, nothing worse than a kid who get sunburned and then no longer is having fun.
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Old 05-05-2013, 05:59 PM   #6
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We took our daughter camping for the first time at 7 months. It was to Birkenhead lake ( http://www.env.gov.bc.ca/bcparks/exp...birkenhead_lk/) and we were in a tent. The number of bears around made us a bit nervous but it was fine... and a main reason we moved to trailers .

Our girls are now 10 and 12 and we have been camping with them more times then I can count. Ages 2 -4 are the most work. They are fast enough to disappear in a second but not smart to come back right away.

It's worth it though.
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Old 05-05-2013, 11:32 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by lagman View Post
We'll be camping for the first time with our 2 year old who has a knack for seeking out danger. Just wondering if anyone has any tips (short of keeping him in the rv all weekend).
I grinned when reading this. We took our kids (tent) camping before the youngest could walk. Now that we are all growed up we have a nice home-away-from-home to take our grandkids, but the rule Papa made was that the grandkid had to be potty trained before overnighting (so if Gramma wasn't around to change it, he wouldn't be stuck LOL). Our youngest grandchild is now three. She camps with us but "Danger" is her unwritten nickname... she is the one who already had a broken arm, and more bumps and bruises than a high school football star. She doesn't come with an off button, and wants to mimic everything anyone bigger than herself does. She has no fear of ANYTHING and will do everything that most toddlers wouldn't attempt.

Like Clubhouse mentioned ".. its not a lot different than being at home with them". The cars will drive past your campsite (as would the street in front of your house); if you have a fire in the pit, same rules as at home in the backyard with bbq or fireplace; stranger danger awareness; animal education (is that slithering thing that has a neat rattle on the back the best opportunity for a new pet?); etc. Establish the rules at the new surroundings from day 1, have consequences, follow through.... but try to stay close to the same routine you use at home otherwise.

But just to make it fun, bring some of his/her favorite toys along; favorite blankie/pillow; frozen ice pops that you both can put together at home before the trip; etc

Don't forget the first aid kit and some of those baby-whipy's (great for quick clean ups when soap and water aren't handy).

And as McFarmell eluded to ("Leave him with a trusted relative")... word to the wise, if you are out to enjoy relaxing (adult libations, and sitting around in the lawn chair), his advice might be a good one LOL For sanity sake, it's best to take 'shifts' on who will be responsible to keep an eye on the toddler, so there is always someone focused 'on watch'.

Definitely do not forget NAP time.... the one time all the grownups can relax LOL

I know, easier said than done... literally, Hailey at three is more of a handful than her older siblings or her mom/uncle ever were, but with a little structure and the above, she does fine camping with us. LOL

Good luck, have fun, and bring the camera to take lots of pics for memories to be recorded for the little one to enjoy when he/she grows up
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Old 05-06-2013, 03:14 AM   #8
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We took our daughter camping when she was less than a year old, and she enjoyed it. Kept on taking her, right up to a long trip to the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, and other parks for her high school graduation present. Now we are taking her kids with us when possible. They are always excited, and never bored with camping with Grandma and Pa-Pa. So we encourage you to take them as many times as possible, and enjoy them while you can.
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Old 05-06-2013, 11:17 AM   #9
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Lots of good tips here. We started camping a few years ago when our twins were 2 yrs old. We just tried to instill common sense rules (ex. no walking between chairs and campfire), used lots of sunscreen, bring some favorite toys, and tried to get a site near the playground. Also, my wife and I use walkie-talkies as we are always getting separated (one kid goes to the beach, the other to the payground, then to the game room, then to the bathroom, then back to the RV to get a snack, any so on...).
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Old 05-06-2013, 12:03 PM   #10
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I have two major concerns with the kids, no matter what age. They are playing around the fire pit. I do not allow it at all, even when there is no fire as you never know if it is still hot, from an earlier fire. The other is being out on a dock. My son is a fabulous swimmer, but swimming in cloths is different than in trunks.

I have one more item that concerns me. When I am backing up, I have a lot of blind spots, until this year (I think). All kids and pets have to say in the truck. My rule is if you cannot see my face in the mirror I cannot see you, and I stop the TV. This goes for the DW too.

I may take a little flack for this, but in my opinion let them get their bumps and bruises, and being a little scare from them thinking you are out of sight (you are watching them thou), it will teach them a lot.

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