This space is to share fun preschool ideas and activities. I am also passionate about children exploring their outdoor surroundings. Thanks for stopping by to see the latest Adventure with the Kerr's!

Thursday, July 22

Summiting a mountain as a family of 4.

Last weekend we were able to go to a new National Park which is something we enjoy doing during the summer/fall time. We REALLY would like to go to Glacier National Park, but I'm not ready to endure a 14 hour car ride with miss Rue, so we settled on Great Basin National Park, it's on the border of Utah and Nevada, which meant only a 4 hour long drive.

I will spare you all the details of the car ride,what we did each day, and just focus on the experience of summiting Wheeler Peak the 2nd highest peak in Nevada, 13, 063 feet.
(The highest peak in NV is 13,140 ft.)

The previous day we did a 4 mile round trip with both children, River almost 4, and Rue is 14 months to see some of the oldest living things on the planet, 
Bristle Cone Pine Trees.

(This is the view of Wheeler Peak from the Bristle Cone Trail)

The hike to see the Bristle Cones and the glacier went really well, so my husband and I were optimistic that we could all hike the 8 1/2 miles round trip to the top of Wheeler Peak.... When we first drove up to 9,000 ft. elevation you could see this beautiful mountain, it reminded me of the first time I saw the Yosemite Valley and half dome, the main difference being that we now have 2 kids that we want to come with us to the top of the mountain :)

The first part of the hike was flat and easy hiking.

Only 1 1/4 miles into the hike there was a beautiful mountain lake that we had to stop and play in.

Now once we got past the the tree line the hike became more taxing on ME both mentally and physically. At times I had to rely on my husband for his emotional support to keep my legs moving and my determination strong.

 Once we were at the ridge to start the summit I began to ask myself the questions that most parents ask BEFORE they start hiking...

"What do we want out of this experience for 
ourselves and for our kids?" 
"Do we really need to go the top, or is just a mile
or 2 good enough?" 
"What can I see at the summit that I can't see now?" 
"Why do people climb to the top of mountains? 
"And why would parents want to bring both of their young children with them??"

I didn't have all the answers to these questions, so I just put one foot in front of the other as I watched my 4-year-old climb to the summit almost all on his own.

This my friends is why we climbed to the top of Wheeler Peak, look at our happy faces! It's all for the picture, the memory we take with us of accomplishing something great as a family! This was the 2nd time I had ever summited a mountain, and the first for baby Rue. River has gone with my husband a few times, but never hiked as well as he did that day.

A little extra bonus of getting to the top is that we got to open this mailbox to see what was left was a registry book. We made our entry, "Adventure Kerrs to the top! River  almost 4-years-old and Rue 14-months."

It took us 6 hours to hike up and 3 hours to hike down. We met a few hikers who were impressed with River's ability to hike. One stopped us and said, "I would have never thought to bring my kids with me." Watch out future hikers, we are the Adventure Kerrs and we don't do just 2 mile hikes!! That was the one idea that kept me going, "We are the Adventure Kerrs not the 2 mile Kerrs.")

 When we got back to camp it was time wash those dirty kids and my dirty feet....

Simply being outdoors provides such a great escape. Once I am outdoors I am able to focus on what really counts and what really matters and that is having fun with my family. Each family has their way of recreating together: board games, movie nights, making homemade ice cream, we enjoy doing something active outside. SO I can't tell you what motivates individuals to climb mountains but for us it is being able to achieve something TOGETHER. Sure my husband and I would have enjoyed doing this without our children but we both would have been wishing that we could have shared the moment of summiting to the top as Papa, Mama, Brother, and Sister Bear.

Right now I am reading "Last Child in the Woods"by Richard Louv. If your family isn't one to spend time outdoors after reading his book you might think otherwise. 

The day before we left for our campout a talented woman named Sonja took some family pics for us..I think they turned out lovely. If you want to check it out on Sonja's blog here it is. Adventure Kerrs family pics.



I love these photos! You are a beautiful family! Thank you :)

Haley and Lance (but probably just Haley) said...

1. Was that post supposed to make me cry? Cuz it did.
2. Would it be creepy if I framed one of your family pictures and put it on my wall?
3. WHILE you were camping this lady took your pictures? 3a. How did you do your hair and get four people in clean clothes while camping?
4. How are you so strong? I don't think I could've finished that hike on my own, let alone with ninos.

(V.Kerr) School Time Adventures said...

hahaha Haley. I love that you are my friend!!!

1.) I didn't mean for it to be an emotional post for others.
2.) It would not be creepy at all, which pic is your fav?
3.) Ok, what I should have said was..."We got these pictures taken the day before we left on our camping trip..and while we were on our camping trip gone she got the disk ready for us."
4.) Well, I did have my moment when I questioned if we really needed to finish this, but when it seems you are so close you don't want to be a weenie and wuss out. Plus Eli did have the heavier load most of the time :)

Haley said...

Well...I'm having a hard time deciding my favorite so it might need to be a little collage. Wait - that HAS to be creepy if the whole wall in my living room is covered with pictures of YOUR family. Oh well.

5orangepotatoes said...

FANTASTIC accomplishment!!!!!! Go little River go!!!! Rue in that little bucket is the cutest darn thing.

Loved this post so much!

Becky said...

Awesome! My just-turned 5 yo son and I hike at least several times a week . . . our first actual summit climb/camping trip is in a few weeks. I will keep your questions in the back of my mind as we get ready to go.

arianne said...

We were at Great Basin this time last year. We loved it!

Bending Birches said...

what a beautiful family....your adventures look amazing:) thanks for sharing:)

littlewondersdays said...

Wow! What a beautiful adventure.

Cheryl said...

Great walk. I'm glad you made it to the top.

Umatji said...

oh what an event! we have done a few large hikes with our family of four - one 39 degree heat and it was REALLY steep and our boy four did the whole lot - I htink it was about 8km. It is so good to do things together - well done and keep inspiring!

softearthart said...

Beaut photos, Mother Nature is rather cool, cheers from New Zealand, Marie

Valerie at Mommy's Muse said...

This is a beautiful post. I think I will pick up that book. We love to hike as well but have not attempted a big hike yet. This post will certainly motivate us to try. You have a wonderful blog.

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