REI's Kid's Passport to Adventure

by John Hamlin 24. June 2008 21:38

School is out and the weather is improving – it’s time to begin planning summer activities for our children.  Be sure to check out REI’s Kid’s Passport to Adventure program.  Last week we took our two children (Megan and Matthew) to our local REI store and enrolled them in the passport program.  The mission of this program is to excite and connect youth to the outdoors.  Upon registration each youth is given their passport and a list of local family friendly hikes.  My children were hooked instantly

During a family outing to the Wenatchee area we made our first two hikes.  The first hike was to Hidden Lake which is located a half mile above Lake Wenatchee.  This was a great two mile round trip hike with minimal elevation gain.  At the end of the hike there was a beautiful alpine lake surrounded by ponderosa pines.  For more information contact the Wenatchee Ranger District.

Our second hike was at Deception Falls which is located on Stevens Pass.  Typically, in a rush to get home after a long weekend we skip the scenic viewpoints and trail heads.  This time our children planned an excursion found in the Best Hikes with Kids – Western Washington and the Cascades by Joan Burton and Ira Spring.  This quick detour is well worth the time.  There was a very kid friendly one mile interpretive hike through moss covered trees and spectacular views of the river.  For more information contact the Skykomish Ranger District.

After arriving home from our long weekend our kids began filling out their passport with their first two hikes.  When finished this will be a great documentary of each hike as my kids listed their favorite aspects of each excursion as well as drew a picture.  Megan and Matthew are already planning their next hike.

Though this program is intended for family use, REI and the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics have created the PEAK (Promoting Environmental Awareness in Kids) Program.  PEAK uses fun presentations filled with hands-on-activities and games to teach kids about taking care of the outdoors.  Ask a REI team member about scheduling a free PEAK presentation for your classroom or youth group.

Written by Derek VanDyke – Green Benefits


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