50 Hikes with Kids Colorado
by Wendy Gorton; Kristin Tillack
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Pub Date 05 Sep 2023 | Archive Date 05 Sep 2023
Handcrafted for caregivers who want to spark a love of nature, 50 Hikes with Kids: Colorado highlights the most kid-friendly hikes in the Centennial State. These hikes are perfect for little legs—they are all under five miles and have an elevation gain of 900 feet of less. Some are even accessible by stroller. Every entry includes the essential details: easy-to-read, trustworthy directions; a detailed map; hike length and elevation gain; natural history factoids to keep kids engaged. Full-color photographs show scavenger hunt items kids are guaranteed to see along the trail.
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Average rating from 12 members
As an avid trail user, I was anxious to check out Wendy Gorton and Kristin Tillack's "50 Hikes with Kids Colorado," the latest in a series of "50 Hikes with Kids" books encouraging active hiking families by beautifully detailing 50 of Colorado's most kid-friendly trails.
This is really a delightful book for caregivers who want to spark a love of nature. The trails chosen, all reportedly kid-tested, are all under five miles in length and have an elevation gain of 900 feet or less. Some are even accessible by stroller, though I saw very few actual references to this fact in the guide.
Dividing Colorado into different sections, each entry includes a variety of delightful details in an easy-to-read format including clear directions with a detailed map, trail length, elevation gain, and even natural history facts guaranteed to enchant. I learned quite a bit in this simple yet enlightening book.
"50 Hikes with Kids" even includes full-color photographs along with scavenger hunt items kids are guaranteed to see along the trail including plants, historic markers, animals, and a variety of other items that will be fun to look for and for the most part difficult to miss.
If there's an area where I think "50 Hikes with Kids" is lacking it's in addressing accessibility issues. With about 17% of the population self-identifying as having a disability of some type, it would have been nice to have included accessibility factoids similar to information about strollers. As a wheelchair user, I often look to family-friendly trails because they are typically more accessible. However, it was clear from reading here that this is frequently not the case with these kid-friendly trails.
I will also admit I was a bit alarmed with those trails that readily identified possible dangerous wildlife, such as rattlesnakes or bears, though I suppose that's true of many trails even in my own home state of Indiana. I felt much better as I wound down my time with the book when it was identified that each trail had, in fact, been kid-tested.
"50 Hikes with Kids" is a beautifully written, visually appealing, and infinitely engaging book for active families and those wanting to become more active. While I can't help but wish some attention had been paid to families with disabilities, either parent or child, this is still a top-notch resource and an awesome read.
I absolutely LOVED this book! It has so many great resources ranging from details about each hike to websites to explore the nature you find on the hikes. I like that it includes maps of the trails, a scavenger hunt, nature journaling prompts, packing tips, restrooms (because we all know those are important when hiking with kids!), and so much more!
I began to get a tad bit disappointed that there was no section for Eastern Colorado (where I live) when lo and behold, it was the last section included! I was really excited to see some very beautiful hikes near me. I would have liked to see even more options on the far east side of the state, but I was impressed with what they included.
As a homeschooling mom of four little ones, this is definitely going on my list of resources for our school curriculum. I am already thinking of ways to include these hikes into our days. There is so much to explore and so much information to get us started just within the pages of this book. I can only imagine how amazing the trails are in person.
Thank you, NetGalley, for the opportunity to read this book! I will be adding it to our library as soon as I possibly can!
This is a wonderful book to either introduce kids to the joys of hiking and exploring, or deepen their joy and engagement with these hikes. While the book showcases the hikes available in Colorado, and is a superb guide to people who live in Colorado or are planning a vacation there, I cannot think of a hiking family anywhere that would not benefit from the tips for enjoyable hiking that this guide provides.
There are many wonderful online resources listed here to plan and investigate hikes, for your specific circumstance (e.g., dog-friendly for people who hike with kids and dogs).
There are so many areas where this title shines: deep knowledge of how kids enjoy hiking best (a focus on the joy, hiking with other kids, having strategic “power-up spots” embedded in the hike, hiking kept short enough to make it enjoyable, making hikes challenging enough to build confidence, making it easy to focus on a handful of special features per hike, that leads to fun, without being bored and leaving the little hiker with an appetite for the next adventure. Speaking of appetites, the inclusion of snack or meal options near each trail is great. A wonderful way to end the adventure and explore the regional specialties.
The detailed hikes are written in language that is very accessible, without any didacticism. There’s a wide breadth of learning here, because the features are so interesting: castles to explore, old ruins, historical and geological features as well as plants and animals. Features are helpfully pointed out in tables, including: Lakes and ponds, history, geology, caves, summits and peaks, rivers and for the traveler – campgrounds by the trails. There are also other tables that make finding hikes easier: by season, by interest, etc..
It's nice to see that using phones is addressed, both the fact that phone service cannot be relied on, and that kids can use them to document what they find and/or use apps to learn more about species they encounter. Equally important, as one often hears about people getting lost on trails or being unprepared, is the safety information and emergency kit that will help people be prepared for their adventures.
As a guide to hikes in Colorado, the hikes are equally useful to older adults (or the kid in them) who would like to experience interesting, enjoyable hikes of 5 miles or less that do not rise more than 900 feet in elevation.
This is a beautiful book with great descriptions, pictures, and maps of hikes in Colorado. This would be a great option for families living in Colorado or families travelling to the area!
If you have kids and enjoy hiking in Colorado, you want this book! The intent and focus go beyond getting kids outdoors; it gets them going on an adventure. The maps are well done and reliable. I am familiar with many of the hikes listed and would not change their content. Each hike begins with all the necessary and helpful content you need when planning an outing with kids: how far, how long, nearest bathroom, fees, and level of difficulty (this is always somewhat subjective, but for the most part, seems accurate based on my experiences as well). Scavenger hunts are included for each hike, which allows kids to actively engage and participate while hiking. I wish this had been around a little earlier to enjoy with my kids, but I would still use a copy for myself.
I received a complimentary copy from the publisher via NetGalley and all opinions expressed are solely my own, freely given.
50 Hikes with Kids Colorado was an easy to follow, easy to read book that gets kids into nature and all that Colorado has to offer. I have three grandkids, but I'm also somewhat mobility limited. This book was just what I needed to get out with them. We enjoyed the hikes we tried, and I hope to keep them motivated to venture out more.
Thank you to TImberview Press, the author and Net Galley for an e-ARC of this title in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.
This book is a great resource for people with small children and for people like me with health issues that preclude strenuous hiking. The information is organized geographically and includes descriptions, maps, history, details about flora and fauna, and more. Each hike includes length, elevation gain, difficulty, best season for hiking, how to get there, and restroom and fee information. And there are lots of great photos! Highly recommended.
I was excited to get this copy of Colorado hikes with kids, we are avid hikers and love to travel so this is super fun. I love the way these books are organized and how they give kids fun things to look for and info for the parents to know how difficult any particular hike may be!
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