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When it's time to go outside adventuring with young children, there are so many gears we bring with us.  Let's show you what's in our bags, what we wear ourselves and what you must bring for your child.


All-Weather Gear

No matter what the weather, here are some constants that come with us when we're exploring in the great outdoors.



  • We pack everything into an easy-to-wear backpack.  


Snacks / Picnic

  • We bring snacks that packs a nutritional punch so more comes from less.  High-protein and high-energy foods are key if you want to bring extra.

  • Water - A must.  We have extra on hand for routine hand washing.

Wipes / Damp Soapy Cloth

  • While not always needed, when it's needed, we are always glad we have it.  These wipes will come in handy if we step in scat, if kids are covered in mud or hands have who knows what on them.

Adventuring Tools

  • We need little in the way of human-made exploration tools at this age.  Kids and their use of natural materials is exhilarating to watch.  But, as your child grows, there are certain tools that may be a regular part of your budding naturalist's rhythm, including a compass, map, binoculars, journal, etc.  We supply basic tools such as shovels, nets etc.

  • We will have some basic journaling supplies as required by lesson plans.

Walking Rope

  • For safety and easy identification of our group outside our home base, while crossing the road and out on the trails, we use walking rope to ensure we stay together.

Mud Suit/Coveralls

  • We highly recommend waterproof coveralls for full-body coverage and protection from the rain, dirt and elements.  See Wet Weather section below.


  • We bring a blanket or tarp as a base to our exploration, picnic and for rest.

Portable Potty

  • Might come in handy when nature calls.

First-Aid Kit

  • Hopefully we never need this, but we have a small kit on hand just in case. 

Weather-Dependent Gear

There is gear we use based on the type of weather of our exploration day.  Unfavorable weather doesn't usually change our plans (except in the case of extreme weather, such as severe lightening, heat waves or blizzards).  Instead, we love the phrase:"There's no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing."


Wet Weather

Rain Gear

  • Rain boots, rain jackets and one-piece jumpers like Oakiwear, Tuffo's Muddy Buddy or Frogg Toggs.  These are our best bet at keeping ourselves and the kids dry longer in their play and everyone happier for as long as we are outside.

Clean Up

  • When our play is over, it's helpful to have a small towel to dry off with, and something dry to change into, as necessary, and a separate dry bag where you can put all the wet and dirty stuff.


Hot Weather

Skin Protectors

  • In the heat, we are dealing with sun and bugs.  We pack sunscreen, hats, bug spray and wear lightweight clothing that covers limbs.

Ready for Water Play

  • Along with the heat, there is much water play - think little creeks or leftover mud and puddles.  Depending on our location, we will advise wet gear accordingly.


Cold Weather

Snow Gear

  • Dress like you are going skiing.  We have the outer layer of waterproof snow pants, jacket, boots, hats, mittens / gloves.  This is our first line of defense from wind and wetness.



  • Under all of that, we wool up our layers.  Keeping our core and extremities warm makes cold-weather play more accessible for longer periods of time.  Consider wool socks, thermal underwear, wool gloves / mittens under waterproof shells, balaclavas, and neck protection.


Hot Liquids

  • Along with our regular snacks we pack a thermos of warm fruit tea to keep our explorations going.

Must Bring for Your Child

Finally here is the list for your first day and everyday:

  1. Backpack (wearable size).

  2. Lunch (full day only).  For hot food, please pack in thermos.

  3. Optional snacks (snacks are included but if you have a personal preference, feel free to bring).

  4. Water bottle labelled with child's name - Choose a reusable water bottle that can easily fit (and not spill) in the backpack or attach with a clip.

  5. One set of season-appropriate change of clothes including extra socks (long socks are best), underwear (diapers/pull-ups if needed).

  6. Pillow/blanket (full day only).

  7. Seasonal jacket or coveralls.

  8. Hat/cap suitable for the season.

  9. Sunscreen and insect repellent labelled with child's name.

  10. See above for weather-dependent gear.


  • If you are joining us at our outdoor meeting point, pack light, start small and test out what works for your family.

  • We encourage rotating or sharing the load of gear with other parents so you're not all bringing everything each time.  You can also cut your cost by swapping gear as kids outgrow it.

  • Also, if you're arriving to our outing by car, think about having two bags: one that stays in the trunk with gear to change into for the ride back home, the other comes with your child full of gear for exploring the outdoors.

So, these are what comes with us on our outdoor adventures.  What else do you make room for in gear bag?  

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