Shed Hunting with Kids
I’m always looking for activities that the whole family can do together. With small children, this can be challenging. The twins just turned two over the weekend and they still have that, “put me down and I’ll run away” instinct. It makes things extremely hard. Jordyn, on the other hand, is old enough to participate in most activities. Last fall during hunting season, my husband and I found a handful of blacktail sheds which triggered our shed hunting obsession now. This is also an activity that we can do with the whole family. Brad and I each wear a baby hiking backpack and Jordyn get’s to tromp along next to us. However, after a few outings I’ve learned some things that I wanted to share. These tips will hopefully help if you plan on shed hunting with your future hunters.
- Bring snacks, lots of them! If you’re kids are like mine, they are always hungry and when they get fussy for other reasons, snacks always wipe away their tears. If you want to stay out for longer than twenty minutes or without listening to screaming in your ear, bring snacks.
- Get creative. Most of the time we don’t find sheds. However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t treasures to find, especially when you’re five! Last time we went out, my daughter found a couple of bones and she thought they were from a dinosaur! Who am I to tell her they weren’t? No thanks. “Nice find, kid! Proud of you!” She also gets excited when she sees deer and elk sign and it gives us an opportunity to educate her about the animals.
- Choose a child friendly location. For as much as my daughter loves adventuring, there are areas that are just flat out hard for her to walk in. Steep hillsides, sticker bushes and areas with a lot of blow downs aren’t exactly child friendly. Tough walking can suck the fun out of any adventure fast, and so can a sticker bush. When taking the kids, I like locations with solid game trails and wide open spaces. Maybe our chances of finding stud sheds are lower, but at least the kids have more fun.
- Let the kids “find” the sheds! This is the most important tip. If you are lucky enough to find a shed, be a good parent and guide your child to it so they can find it first. My husband found an old shed the other day and he called our daughter over to him when he saw it so she could find it. It was way more exciting for her and it was fun for us to see her excitement. After all, don’t we want our kids to fall in love with the outdoors? Creating positive experiences with our kids outdoors is the first step in passing down our hunting heritage.