View topic - Kevin Callan on Family Camping

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PostPosted: August 29th, 2007, 3:02 pm 
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Just want to share with all of you the article Kevin Callan has written for Paddling.net on family canoe tripping. As always, it has some good laughs...and that little Kyla is the most adorable little cutie I ever saw!

http://www.paddling.net/guidelines/showArticle.html?310

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PostPosted: August 29th, 2007, 3:22 pm 
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Nancy wrote:

What a joy to read! Real information packaged to be fun....

I am always happy to see his books on the canoe shelf at Chapters, especially the one on camping:
The Happy Camper
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PostPosted: August 29th, 2007, 3:36 pm 
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Erhard wrote:
What a joy to read! Real information packaged to be fun....

I am always happy to see his books on the canoe shelf at Chapters, especially the one on camping:
The Happy Camper
Image


That's such a terrific book, isn't it, Erhard? I've even got mine autographed!! :D That Kevin guy is so generous, that after I asked him to sign my beaten up and water-damaged copy of The Happy Camper, he insisted on giving me a new...and signed...copy. Good guy, that Kevin.

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PostPosted: August 30th, 2007, 3:03 pm 
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A wonderful article Kevin... a wealth of great advice for parents looking to trip with young children.

For my part, I started my daughter at the age of 4, and son at the age of 8. I now trip with my son alone and in groups several times annually (he is 10 now), and with the four us at least once a year (the fourth being my wife!).

If I may add to your article's advice:

- Location is a big factor when tripping with kids, providing constraints you'd not think about often with other adults. Portage length (as you mentioned) is one, but I also find wind important. When I go alone with my son (who does not really contribute to the paddling yet), I have to account for wind and try and stay a bit more inland as it's me doing the brunt of paddling. A slow, hard day of up-wind paddling is endurable alone in a pinch, but add the extra risk of capsizing, and it's something I try to avoid when I'm alone with my young son! So, this means I avoid Massasauga (both entries), since they can be windy, for example.

- Another factor is car trip duration. This is no different than car-trip planning with kids on any sort of trip, but depending on where you live, be prepared with all the tricks-of-the-trade to make the car trip less than a parent's nightmare (i.e. portable DVD player, the bag-o-nickels trick... take one away each time they are bad and leaving the rest for them at end of trip, lots of games, drawing pads, etc.).

- I like to plan sites that have a lot to see and do. For our recent family trip (Massasauga), the camp site was on Little Blackstone Lake, which has an amazing hour-long river-paddle (north-east end) past beavers dams and a great ending falls. The kids loved this! Add to this that we had two camp-site snapping turtles entertaining us for the duration of our stay from the water's edge, which the kids were endlessly entertained by.

- All kids seem to love fishing, from my experience (my daughter is a true girly-girl despite our best attempts, and yet she still loves to fish!). Size of catch is not important, but make sure there is plenty of action. A recent spot had them catching 4-6 inch large mouth bass on every cast!

- Base camping for a couple of days or more is much easier than moving everyday. Our kids never get bored playing around the camp site. The daily pack-up seems much harder when tripping with children.

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PostPosted: September 10th, 2007, 12:31 pm 
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We use cloth diapers at home, but when traveling/tripping we found http://www.gdiapers.com. They are a hybrid cloth/disposable and the disposable part is biodegradable and compostable. They are made of plant based rayon and wood pulp for the absorbing material.

They are more expensive then disposables, but at home we just use cloth diapers inside the outer shells.

I'm not sure if they are available in Canada, but Whole Foods carries them.


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PostPosted: September 10th, 2007, 12:39 pm 
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Other things to add:
- set up camp early.
- 4 adults and 2 kids is easier then 2 adults and 1 kid. At least one person is going to have to watch small kids.


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PostPosted: September 17th, 2007, 2:43 pm 
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Whole Foods has stores in Oakville and Toronto

http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/canada/index.html


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PostPosted: September 17th, 2007, 2:49 pm 
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littleredcanoe wrote:
Whole Foods has stores in Oakville and Toronto

http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/canada/index.html


Hi Kim,

I just talked to the nice folks at gDiapers. They aren't allowed to sell in Canada because the packaging isn't billingual yet. They are working on that and we should see these up here next year sometime. Also you can purchase the product through their website. They ship USPS which is good (no brokerage fees).


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PostPosted: September 17th, 2007, 5:29 pm 
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Location: Newmarket, Ontario Canada
just remember that a good olive barrel lined with a garbage bag makes a great smell free place to keep any type of diaper.

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PostPosted: September 19th, 2007, 7:31 am 
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I was pretty excited about finding gdiapers as well. It was a few weeks before we had a trip planned I ran down to the local Whole Paycheck and got some. They worked great.


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