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We’re back from our first camping trip of the season!

Sunset at the campsite

We’d packed up the winter gear and we had the urge to get out and camp. So with the forecast for the weekend being sunny and warm (though a little frosty at night), we decided to start our camping season. After having fun at a previously scheduled birthday party, we headed out to Bow Valley Campground. Located off the Highway 1x between Highways 1 and 1A in Kananaskis, Alberta, Bow Valley has a number of trails perfect for small children including the Bow River trail (2.5 km) running along the river side of the campgrounds. With it’s close proximity to Calgary, it allowed us to fulfil obligations in town and still enjoy the joys of camping in nature. With mountain views and the river at our doorstep, great trails and playgrounds it was a great night out and allowed us to try out several new things for our camping adventures.

M’s Balance Bike

Morning Ride

A great addition to our camping adventures was M’s Balance Bike! M had a great time on his bike while we were setting up camp. We had a great riverside walk-in side and he followed us on his bike up and down the path to the truck while we unloaded the gear. After the tent was set-up we took his bike on the Bow River trail which was conveniently connected to our site. His balance bike allowed him to hit the trails with none of the difficulties of a traditional bike with training wheels.

Foam Floor Tiles

Back in September Tiffany at A Little Campy wrote about using Tent Camping with Foam Floor Tiles as a great way to soften the floor of the tent. I thought it was a great idea and as we use them to cut down on the cold concrete floor in the basement, they might even help keep the tent warmer. So we packed up a few spare tiles and tried them out. Tiffany, you can add another great benefit – they are great at insulating! Even before getting out the sleeping pads the floor was much warmer.


After reading A Little Campy’s Top 5 Favorite Camping Recipes For Kids on Friday, I decided to add s’mores to our menu. Though delicious, we’ve decided that a turbo charged toddler might not be the best idea and we’d better save them for after he’s cuddled in his sleeping bag.

 *Gear Review* – Mountain Hardware Mountain Goat Adjustable 20 Sleeping Bag

Camping in the mountains can be cold, even in the middle of the summer, and M’s sleeping bag was not quite warm enough. But thanks to Grandma, Grandpa G and Aunty T, M got a new sleeping bag as a slightly early birthday present. We chose the Mountain Hardware Mountain Goat Adjustable 20 and I have to say that so far it’s incredible. Though the temperature dipped to near freezing overnight, M was comfy cozy all night (a little too warm if anything) in his regular pjs. The Mountain Goat Adjustable is a 20F/-7C rated synthetic sleeping bag with an adjustable foot box that “grows” with your child. A drawstring system allowed us to shorten the internal length of the sleeping bag and create the perfect length of bag for our son.

The season has started and we’re looking forward to many more camping trips this summer! The willness to adapt and be flexible with your child’s changing needs and interests is the key to creating great experiences. It’s all about finding what works for you and your family. There are several other favourite tricks from other camping families that I’m looking forward to trying out and I’m always looking for new ideas.

What is your favourite camping trick?