Backpacking with Kids - Foothills

Backpacking Course

Backpacking with Kids

Backpack with your kids! This course is for parents with some backpacking experience who want to take their children (little ones to teenagers) backpacking. Learn more about planning, on the trail, gear, tips and tricks, etc. At least one parent must participate with their kids in the field trips. Course fee is reduced for kids- see registration and promo code information below.

Backpacking with your kids in the back country can be a rewarding adventure for children and parents alike.  Unplug, expose your kids to the joys of being outdoors, be together as a family, and watch your children mature into outdoor enthusiasts.

This course is for parents with some backpacking experience and little ones age 0-6 (make it fun and simple), grade school kids (fun and adventure), or teens (challenge and learn skills)!  The course includes:

  • An evening information session for parent(s) Tuesday, May 23, 6:30-9:00pm, at The Mountaineers Program Center`s room Goodman A.  Teens are welcome but this session is not appropriate for young kids.  Learn about trip planning, on the trail tips, kid oriented gear and food, safety, and other tips and tricks from experienced parents that backpack with their kids aged 2-19.
  • An overnight group practice camp with your family at Tolt River-John MacDonald Park in Carnation the weekend of June 24-25.  Walk in 1/2 mile, sleep in your tent, test your gear, go on a day hike, and practice for a real wilderness backpack trip.
  • Backpacking with kids resource recommendations.
Later on,  during the summer months, backpacking trips will be offered on the Mountaineers backpacking activity page for families in the course to participate in, designed for the ages of kids that are signed up for the course.   These  are not a required part of the course but we hope that families participate.

Registration and Promo Code Info

 To sign up for this course, first parents need to set up a family or guest family membership and add all your family members to your account, and sign their waivers.   If you or your family members are already registered as guest adults or have regular adult memberships we are offering free family membership upgrades for those taking this course.

To upgrade your adult membership type to be a family membership type please email with "Backpacking with Kids Membership Upgrade" in your email subject line. 

Once you have an account set up as a Guest Family or regular Family membership you'll see a blue Add Family Members button on your profile that will allow you to add your partner or children to the membership. 

For kids under 18 there are also youth forms to complete to provide staff and volunteer leaders important information about their emergency contacts and any medical conditions or allergies.  Once you set up your kids on your account, go to their profiles and you'll see a button called 'Youth Forms'.  Click on that button and complete the main Youth Form and the Youth in Adult Program form.  That information will 'live' on their profile and won't have to be re-entered when you register them for future activities.  OR you can complete the youth forms when you register for the course, below.  


 Register by clicking on the Registration button at the right of this course listing.  Please register each participating member of your family individually.  Ex: A family with dad, mom, child #1, and child #2 will complete four separate registrations.   Registering for the course automatically registers you for the lecture and the overnight field trip.

The course fee is $30/person for the first two family members, and any additional family members will be able to register for $10 each.  To get the reduced rate, when you register family members beyond the first two, use the discount code CO17FMBACKPACK on the checkout screen and the discount will be applied automatically.  (This is on the honor system - please do not apply the discount to the first two family members you register.)

If you have any questions or would like help with any part of this process, please don't hesitate to call our friendly folks at Mountaineers Member Services at 206-521-6001, or call the Foothills Backpacking Committee chair Cheryl Talbert at 253-229-4018.  We look forward to meeting you and your family in the course!

Badges you will earn:

Course Requirements

This course has no scheduled activities.

Required Equipment

Standard backpacking gear and food for your family.

Course Materials

You must register for this course to see course materials.