We’ve always believed that children should be exposed to trekking from a young age. Trekking together as a family deepens bonds and benefits their growth immensely.
Earlier this year, in the summer holidays, we tentatively opened 2 special trek batches for families with young children. Trekking with family was a new concept – and that too in the Himalayas. We believed that nothing could be a better experience for families.
To our surprise, the 2 batches we opened were filled within the week! Requests from parents asking for new dates kept pouring in. By the end of summer, we had 13 full batches – all filled.
Out of sheer public demand, we are now opening up 16 treks for families and students for the next few months.
Here are the dates for our Family trek batches to Kedarkantha, Dayara Bugyal and Deoban:
Why these three treks
Kedarkantha is an even-paced summit trek
Almost everyone knows about the Kedarkantha trek. Not only does it have dense forest trails and pretty campsites, it’s a trek that comes with a huge sense of achievement upon climbing the summit at 12,500 ft!
The bonus is that it covers short distances everyday and you’re at the next campsite before lunch! It definitely is up there amongst the best treks for children.
Dayara Bugyal is an easy meadow trek
Dayara Bugyal is perhaps our most ideal trek for children. With its campsites located at just the right distance from each other, it has a perfect balance of trek time and leisure time.
Mountain views and alpine meadows like these are hard to find elsewhere at such ease.
Deoban Weekend Trek
Deoban is a lovely weekend trek just off Chakrata. It passes through few of the oldest deodar forests of the region. The forests open up to a lovely valley with very grand views of big mountains of the Garhwal Himalayas.
On a clear day, you can spot as many as 55 peaks! This makes for a grand experience for children, over just one weekend. It’s not too hard on the legs either.
How family treks are different from regular treks
Family treks will have only families with their children of age limit 8 to 17. Children of age 13-17 can also join this trek without their parents.
Parents have the support and comfort of having other parents in the same group. Children will trek and be engaged in activities along with other children. This will encourage them to form meaningful bonds of friendship.
On the first day, we will organise the children into teams. They will be responsible for certain camp related activities and will switch roles every other day.
Here’s a peek into what the teams will do:
- The Camp set-up team oversees pitching of tents. They make sure pitching and dismantling is done properly. They also help those who need assistance.
- The Green Trails team ensures that everyone is engaged with keeping the trails and campsites clean. They oversee waste segregation. They see to it that the toilets and washing areas are set up and clean.
- The Cooking team assists the cook and helps in serving all meals. They ensure that all eat well and there is no wastage.
- The Trek Leader Assistants team assists the Trek Leader in keeping discipline with regard to timing. They will also aid those who are struggling or need any help.
Along with this there will also be co-operative games, stargazing on clear nights, storytime (yes, spooky stories too!), wilderness survival tips and knowledge sharing sessions.
Reflections at the end of each day will allow children to contemplate their learnings and experiences of the day. It’s a time of introspection and gratitude.
What scholarships we provide and how to avail them
We are offering a scholarship to all children trekking with us on the exclusive family batches.
- 8 – 12- year- olds – 50% scholarship
- 13 – 17-year-olds – 30% scholarship
You can follow these steps to avail them:
Step 1: Click on the date that suits you on the selected trek page.
Step 2: Start the registration process. You will require unique emails IDs for all participants, including the children.
Step 3: Before making the payment, send an email with a proof-of-age of your child to email@example.com. Any id card with the Date Of Birth will do.
Note: Mention the subject line as “Proof of age for (selected trek).”
Step 4: Our Trek Coordinator will get back to you within 24 hours with a voucher for your child.
Step 5: Make the payment once you get a thumbs up from the Trek Coordinator.
Will My Child Be Safe On The Trek
We understand that trekking with your child may cause you to worry about their safety. All our past family trekkers however have always found our treks to be safe.
Here are some of the commonly asked questions we receive from parents.
– Who will ensure safety on the trek?
Our Trek Leaders are certified Wilderness First Responders. They have been trained in wilderness survival and emergency medical aid. They are capable of taking care of any emergency on a trek.
Our staff is constantly in touch with each other though radio communication to ensure that all the children and safe and sound.
– What safety gear do you carry?
We carry fully stocked high altitude first aid kits, oxygen cylinders, ropes and stretchers. In addition to this these treks have easily accessible exit routes for any emergency evacuation.
– How do I prepare my children for a Himalayan Trek?
Active preparation is important for any trek, especially for children. Watch this video on how to get children trek fit.
Also remember to pack the right things for the trek.
Our Experience With Children
From our records, 79 children aged 6-12 years and 55 children aged 12-16 years have completed the Dayara Bugyal Trek with us and we have had no untoward incident.
In 2018 alone, we have taken 943 children below 18 years of age on our Himalayan treks. This is not counting the 1000+ school students we have taken on local and Himalayan treks.
There is no doubt that children naturally learn more in the outdoors. The joyful memories created and the natural learning experienced can last a lifetime!
Read this article to know more about how to enrich your child’s trek experience.
If you have any questions and would like to talk to us, then drop in a comment, or write to [email protected] You can also call us on 7022175673.