In our road trip across the U.S., we have gone on many hikes with Jude.  We enjoyed hiking, with Jude in a backpack on Patrick’s back, in the Badlands, Yellowstone, Glacier, and Mt. Constitution on Orcas Island (the highest point in the San Juan Islands) as well.

Here are ten tips we have picked up about how to have a successful and enjoyable hike with a two-year-old: Continue reading »

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Aug 222011
 

I have long maintained that mastering the standing diaper change is a critical skill for traveling with a baby or toddler.  In Yellowstone, I did my first standing poopy diaper change on the summit of an 8500-foot mountain, without wipes.  My advice?  Pull the diaper down quickly once, grabbing as much as you can, and wrap tightly.  Yes, you do have to pack it down with you (think of all future generations who want to enjoy the mountain, not only the one who just pooped).  A bag to wrap in it would have been nice, but considering my lack of supplies, other than water and food, it went well.

Bear safety has become somewhat of a hot-button issue at Yellowstone.  There has been one bear-related fatality in Yellowstone already this year, and signs warning of the hazards of bears are all over the Park.  (Further proving the danger of bears at Yellowstone, a follow-up segment to the 2011 bear fatality, being taped on CNN on bear safety at the Park, was disrupted by a bear.) Continue reading »

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The Badlands: great place to visit.  They are basically in the middle of nowhere, and miles from any major airport.  It took us the better part of two days to get there from Minneapolis.  As a result, they are fairly devoid of tourists.  The only visitors we saw were serious outdoors lovers, and scores of bikers from the Sturgis rally, taking place while we were in the Badlands.  Maybe the tough-sounding name of the Park appealed to them, or maybe just the rally’s proximity to the Badlands worked to draw them in, but the roar of Harleys was an ever present during our stay.  A staffer at the lodge told me that there were over one-million bikers in Sturgis for the rally and that they had come from all over the world.  Interestingly, the bikers seemed to stay away from any of the serious hikes, just checking out the vistas with very serious-looking cameras pulled out of their saddle bags.  They were all very nice to Jude despite some pretty offensive, unbecoming, and sometimes racist slogans adorning their bikes and clothes (not fit to re-print here).  An amusing aspect of the Sturgis Rally website is a list of the most commonly violated state laws and city ordinances during the rally (e.g. “indecent exposure[,]” bond amount $111; “deposit of filth[,]” bond amount $86, etc.). Continue reading »

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