Camping with Children in a Canoe

Camping with Children in a Canoe

Canoeing is enjoyable, and the learning curve from a newbie to a proficient beginning is not steep. This was a great time. It’s also a terrific opportunity for the whole family to interact because it requires everyone to work together to get to camp safe, sound, and fairly dry.

Here are a few tips for camping in a canoe

  1. Be Wary of the Risks

There are inherent dangers in entering the water with only a thin layer of fiberglass between you and potential perils ranging from panicked children to drowning.

And hiring a canoe for a couple of hours at a lakeside resort isn’t the same as going out for the weekend with a canoe loaded with gear.

The most crucial thing to remember—even more important than your paddle—is that safety comes first.

2. Prioritize safety

Knowing that safety is your top priority and acting on it are two completely different things.

Make preparations ahead of time. Learn what skills you’ll need to master, what equipment you’ll need, and which lakes and rivers in your area are ideal for novice paddlers.

Once you’ve narrowed down your options, look into everything from campsites to who to contact in the event of an emergency. Consider going on a family trip with a professional guide.

3. Take some classes

What is the difference between a j-stroke and a draw stroke, and when should you use them? If the canoe tips over, what should you do? What’s the best way to apply the brakes?

A novice canoe course will teach you the answers to these and other questions. Canoe lessons will not only teach you how to securely take your family out on the lake, but they will also teach you how to paddle more effectively and have more fun on the water. Check with your local canoe club and paddling retailers for lessons in your region.

4. Do a “dry” run first

Okay, so it wasn’t exactly a warm-up. Take a day trip with your family. If you’re going to hire canoes, be sure they’re the same ones you’re going to rent for your weekend vacation.

This will allow you and your family to become acquainted with it and determine the optimal seating location for everyone. It will also allow you to share some of your newly acquired paddling knowledge with the kids.

Most importantly, you’ll learn fast whether your family is a good fit for paddling or whether you should postpone your weekend adventure until next year.

5. Start easy

For your first overnight canoe journey, avoid a multi-day whitewater river adventure.

Begin on a lake or a flat, leisurely river where you won’t have to paddle more than a few miles to reach your campground.

First and foremost, you don’t want to be caught in the middle of a lake as darkness falls. Second, youngsters find sitting in a canoe for a few hours with nothing to do boring.

Bored children are fidgety, in addition to making the standard sounds like “I’m bored.” Fidgety kids have a habit of knocking things over. Canoes, for example.

6. Comfort is important when packing

One of the advantages of canoeing is that you can bring a lot more stuff than you would if you were backpacking. So go for broke (within reason, of course).

Leave your single-burner backpacking stove at home and bring your two-burner vehicle camping stove.

Comfort food, such as pre-cooked chili or spaghetti and meatballs, should be brought.

Bring a spare set of clothes for each person. It’s surprising how wet kids can get, and how having a dry change of clothes may mean the difference between a fun family day and a lesson on why you shouldn’t take kids canoeing.

After all of this, double-check that everything fits in the canoe before you leave.

7. Expect to perform the majority of the paddling yourself

You’ll bring paddles for the kids, and they may try to paddle with them in the water, but the majority of the paddling will be done by you.

Young arms, shoulders, and backs simply lack the power and endurance needed to propel a fully loaded canoe very far.

By its nature, paddling for more than five minutes is tedious. Accept it, and you’ll spare yourself—and your children—a lot of heartache and anguish.

8. Enjoy your time

This is the most crucial thing to remember after safety. What’s the point if that’s not the case? Kids who have a good time canoeing are more likely to want to do it again.

Oh, I almost forgot about that. Before getting into the boat, make sure everyone has gone to the bathroom. This, along with always wearing life jackets, is unavoidable.

After all of this, double-check that everything fits in the canoe before you leave.

Conclusion

A great camping experience takes a lot of planning and preparation, but can be an absolute blast for the whole family. Using a canoe to camp in is just one way of making sure everything goes smoothly without any issues.
Ultimately, you will want to enjoy your time outdoors when you are out with your loved ones, so never hesitate to get creative! Just make sure that the first few steps such as preparing and setting up the camp site go off smoothly – after all we don’t want anything that could ruin everyone’s fun!


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