After recently moving and taking a few weekends to get settled into our new home, I was feeling desperate for a day outside with my family. We’d spent too many days unpacking boxes, organizing the garage and doing yard work. We needed quality time together, not just crossing things off our list, but enjoying each other’s company. It might take a bit of work to get 3 young kids packed up for a day out, but every single time, the effort is always worth it.
While trying to pick a hike to go on, I felt a bit torn. I really wanted to get some good exercise and challenge myself, but our kids are young, and I didn’t want us to pick something that might be too difficult for them. In that moment, my husband said exactly what I needed to hear. “When they’re with us, it’s not really time for us to get great exercise. We just need to go out with them and have fun!” And so we picked the shorter hike and it was absolutely perfect. No one cried or had to be carried (except for our 2 year old, who I wore the entire time). As they get older, we’ll be able to increasingly do more difficult things. For now, having fun is what’s most important.
I wanted to share this hike to Boardman Lake with our NW Healthy Mama readers, in case you’re looking for a great kid-friendly hike to add to your list. The hike is located in the North Cascades off of Mountain Loop highway. The distance is 2 miles roundtrip, which was a great length for our kids, who are 2, 4 and 6.
Almost immediately after you begin your hike, you’ll reach Lake Evan, which is absolutely stunning. You’ll be tempted to stop there, but just wait, it gets better. Let your kids climb around for a moment and then continue on, until you reach Boardman Lake.
Boardman Lake might be fairly popular on a sunny day, but there are lots of areas to have a picnic and stay awhile.
To read more about this hike and get directions, visit the Washington Trail Association website here. Please note this hike is almost 5 miles off the main highway on a gravel road. We loved everything about the hike, but be prepared for a road that isn’t in the best condition.
Do you have any favorite hikes to take your little ones on? I’d love to add them to our list!