I have been surprised by the lack of good links for what to take hiking/camping with a kid. My husband and I used to do UL camping, with only bare essentials. We're changing our tune somewhat now that our 4 year old is ready to go camping with us, as it's hard to get kids camping gear that doesn't weigh a ton, and we'll need to bring along some things to entertain him that we would otherwise consider unnecessary. That said, we are definitely a hike-in and camp kind of family, not a car-camping kind of family, so we need to be able to carry everything easily. We already have low weight tent/sleeping bags for us, but we are needing to get/modify gear for our son. Here's what we're doing:
So far with day hikes he's done a great job at keeping up and carrying his own stuff, we'll be trying out hiking followed by camping this summer but I expect it will be much of the same, as we'll cover about the same distance and he will be carrying very little more.
What the adults will carry We're suckers for this game: Uno Card Game Depending on how long you're camping for and how spread out you like to be at your campsite, you will need 1-3 of these votive candles to keep the bugs at bay Yellow Citronella Votive Candles, Set of 20 We made our own version of this fleece sleeping bag, with a fleece blanket and use a compression sack to help compress & keep it dry Fleece Sleeping Bag/Mat - Baby Frogs it's not water-proof, but we're able to check the weather before camping and can cancel if there is going to be rain. For a sleeping pad... we have an older model inflatable pad of mine that he'll be using. We'll be carrying the rest of his clothes (including a bathing suit & SPF shirt) as well as one paperback bedtime book of his choice. Our packs are older versions of this Dakine pack and are WONDERFUL, I highly recommend this pack as being comfortable for both men & women, and withstanding years of harsh conditions without wearing out DAKINE Poacher Snow Pack