In 2010 the kids and I hiked Little Wild Horse Canyon (down by Goblin Valley State Park) with my sister and nephew, but the Badger wasn't able to come on that trip. All these years now we've been telling him how awesome it was, so we decided to make that our family hike.
It ended up being one of those absolutely perfect family outings that just makes your heart sing. Here are 45,000 pictures.
The beginning of the hike, taken by me:
The beginning of the hike, taken by the Badger:
We only have one baby backpack, so we tried putting Leaf in a wrap carrier on Bean's back. That didn't work out so well... I haven't done much wrapping of babies onto backs, so I guess I didn't really know what I was doing. We took her out and I was going to wrap her to my front instead, but we ended up just carrying her most of the hike because it was easier.
The hollow tree that we remembered was still there at the mouth of the canyon.
Little Wild Horse is such a great hike for families and children. There is one part near the beginning where you have to climb up over a rock, but it's very doable, especially with lots of friendly reaching hands.
The Rabbit loves to climb, and she was constantly climbing up the walls of the canyon as we hiked. We joked that the soundtrack to our hike was "Rabbit, GET DOWN!!!" Later in the week when the kids were down camping with the Badger they actually wrote a song, "Rabbit, get down!"
This place is absolutely kid heaven.
Hiking together as a family was just so, so wonderful. We haven't done many family activities since the twins were born, especially outdoor activities. So this was such a rejuvenating experience.
As we were starting out from the parking lot, Peanut complained that she was tired and then freaked out about having to scramble down a very small rock. We thought, "Oh no, she's going to complain and be difficult the whole hike." But once we got in the canyon, she thought it was so cool that she did the whole hike happily and without complaint.
A Frog marching... He did great on the hike too. We only went a mile or so up the canyon, so it was just the right length for our little people, but the canyon is so awesome that everyone absolutely loved the experience. It is sometimes challenging to find things that appeal to all ages when you have a large brood, but this was ideal.
Rabbit, GET DOWN!!!!
Do you see the lizard?
Starting to get really narrow...
What do you do when you're in a narrow spot and you run into hikers going the other way? No problem!
As we walked out of the canyon, the Badger and I watched our kids hiking along together and talked about what a wonderful time this was for us. Our whole family is together now, and that only for a few short precious years until they start leaving the nest. It was so lovely to be all together, enjoying nature and having a good time.