We are still hiking and hope you are too! Our first blog post about 8 Kid-Friendly Hikes was so hugely popular we decided to share our latest adventures with you! How do we judge which hikes are kid-friendly? First, the route has to be pretty wide so that we can allow our littlest one to roam somewhat freely on the path. Second, it can’t be too steep, we will hold our three year olds hand in spots to help her up, but generally we want her to walk. Finally, it can’t be too long; we want the kids to enjoy the hike and nothing is worse than having a toddler whining that they want you to pick them up, while trying to enjoy being outdoors with the family. Also, at the beginning of our hikes we always remind our kids of the rules. 1.) They are not to get so far ahead of us that they can’t see us (because we can’t see them). 2.) They are to always stay on the path, poison oak never goes dormant and we don’t want them have to deal with that misery. With that said, here are 5 more hikes that YOU AND THE KIDS will surely love!
WHITE RABBIT TRAIL
KID-FRIENDLY WITH CAUTION - Would not suggest stroller's.
Winter isn’t just for skiing, snowshoeing and snowmobiling. Hiking is just as fun in the winter months as it is in the spring and fall. We decided to go up for a brisk hike up to White Rabbit Trail. At the top of Park Street follow Oredsen Todd Wood Trail, it’s a little a drive above Ashland and the day we went there was a thick layer of ice, so if you decide to go during the winter make sure that you have a good four-wheel drive vehicle to make it up the hill. Once we got up there it was an enchanting, winter wonderland. Most of the path was wide enough that you could let the kids on their own, but make sure that you don’t let them get too far ahead; at times we had to make sure we had Olivia's, our three year old, hand in our tight grasp. There are trails like the ‘Queen of Hearts’ and ‘The Mad Hatter’ making it seem even more exciting and fun for the kids. This the best description of directions to get there. MAP
QUARRY ROAD IN JACKSONVILLE
KID-FRIENDLY - Stroller Friendly
A pretty easy hike right in Jacksonville, you can park either at the library or outside of Jacksonville Cemetery gates. Take time to read the story of how the land became preserved by a high school student’s initiative; ther is a information board at the trail head and it is pretty inspiring. The trail went on the side of the cemetery and was really easy for Olivia to roam free. It’s supposed to be a mile long so make sure that when you get to the fork in the road at the end of the fence, don’t go straight. Take the path to the right that runs parallel to the fence and then continue straight walking outside of the cemetery until you end up at the beginning where you started. We also decided to take a little tour of the historic cemetery which is quite beautiful. If you want to lengthen your hike there are a lot more trails to use. We went left at the cemetery instead of going straight and we ended up walking almost another 1/2 mile before we decided to turn around. I almost feel like we would have ended up at John's Peak if we would have kept going! MAP
SUSAN CREEK FALLS IN ROSEBURG
KID-FRIENDLY | Stroller Friendly
The day we went to Susan Creek Falls it was raining a little but it was okay because there was enough tree cover we didn’t get too soaked. Ilias, our 9 year old, really loved this hike. There were markers along the way that described the native plant life and he read every one of them with his dad. When we got to the falls it was gorgeous. There is something so mind clearing about being near water. All said and done the hike took us a little over an hour; a perfect hike for the little one. Another thing about hiking in the winter or early spring is that you don't run into too many people so it is quite pleasant and serene. MAP
BEEKMAN TRAIL IN JACKSONVILLE
VERY KID-FRIENDLY | Stroller Friendly
This was such a great easy hike we will be doing it over and over again. There is sweeping views of Jacksonville down below and gorgeous Madrone trees everywhere. It is mostly shaded so that even on sunny, warm days you will be comfortable. The kids loved its wide paths and the incline was not too bad, being a great hike for beginners. While there was a marked path the kids really had a great time being able to be independent and run ahead because it was so wide open we could see them for quite a distance most of the hike. MAP
BEEBE WOODS TRAIL IN JACKSONVILLE
VERY KID-FRIENDLY | Stroller Friendly
We did this little hike after dinner one night. To get to the trailhead you have to walk along the street for a short distance. Follow the sign that says Beebe Woods. To start there is bit of an incline but nothing too hard. Remember, this hike is only about a mile in length total so a little incline won't poop out the kids. Our three year old walked the whole way without a complaint! After a bit the trail widens a lot giving the kids a little wiggle room to run and get some energy until you hit the .5 mile Frenchmen Mine Loop. When you start up, it does get a little steep and narrow at times, but no huge drop offs. Our little one did great, but depending on how well your child listens, there are some spots you might want to hold hands.
Once you get done with the loop you just head back the way you came. Of course just about all of the Jacksonville Trails are interconnected so you could keep hiking, but this was just perfect for us!
To get there: From the California St. in Jacksonville going west take a left on 3rd St. until you hut Graham and take a right. You will want to park on the side of the road on the corner of Graham and Applegate St. From the corner you will see wooden trail signs telling you take the left trail up to the Beebe Woods trail.
Hiking is such an invigorating and fulfilling activity to do as a family. I highly suggest getting out there with your kids and jumping on some trails. Whether it's 1/2 a mile or 3 miles, if you are prepared you might be surprised with how much your children love it!
Which trails do you like to tackle as a family? We always love taking adventures to new places. Give us recommendations and hopefully we will see you out on the trails!