Outdoor adventures with toddlers, teens, and everyone in between

Outdoor adventures with toddlers, teens, and everyone in between

Our very own owner and founder is a father of five and happily takes his kids, who range from elementary school age to college age, on backpacking trips. They've come to love adventuring with their dad, but like any parent, he knows it takes effort to create trips where families can build memories and relationships. There is a lot to juggle when you're trying to entertain your kids, from the littlest one, eager to put anything in their mouth, to the teenager, who might be looking for cell service to send a Snap to their friends. We want to help you have the best adventuring experiences, not just with our gear but also with your loved ones!


Before you leave the house:

  1. Pick a campsite you know and love that is pretty close to civilization unless your kids have gotten used to camping.
  2. Make sure you've reserved your campsite (if necessary), and get there before it gets dark. Your kids might be a little nervous if it's their first adventure outside, and letting them see where they're at will help them feel comfortable. It'll also allow you to get everything set up before sunset.
  3. If you don't make it before then, make sure you have flashlights and headlamps accessible. 

Meal prep! Get your kids' favorite foods together, and get a backpack that allows you to bring extra snacks. If you plan on staying within walking distance of your car, take a basic cooler with food to make cooking easier.

Take hygiene kits so your kids can stay clean! The little ones will happily eat their food with dirt all over their hands, but you never know what else they have touched. And in case your teen gets a little wild, always be prepared with a first aid kit

Let your teens know this will be a trip where phones and electronics will stay at home. 


One of the first things you need to do is create a comfortable place for your family to bond, which is best in a waterproof tent. Even the best-planned trips can be ruined by a sudden rainstorm! Our tents include a rainfly to help keep the gear in your tent dry, and our titanium shovel works great for building trenches so water doesn't sneak into your tent. 

If your gear gets wet, don't put your wet clothes in your pack with your dry clothes! Once the rain stops, find a tree to hang your clothes and damp gear on so it has a chance to dry out. When you get back home, you should set up the damp tent outside in the sun to dry out. But even this soaked-up adventure can be a good memory. Remain positive and allow your family to help where they can. 

Only some of your adventures will get rained out (better safe than sorry), so we suggest packing camping chairs for the family. Having a comfy chair or stool can make all the difference for a teen and make a little one feel special. Having a comfortable spot also helps when cooking around the campfire. Our fire starter kit will help make sure your cooking station is ready to go when your family gets hungry. 

Bring games that your family will be into. The games don't always have to happen around the fire; you can also create memories as a family huddled in a tent, playing cards, Spoons, or the no-laughing game! Outside your tent, there are so many things you can do! It's easy to create a scavenger hunt, play charades, play Codenames, or if your kids are into art, challenge them to draw things around them. At night, take the time to show your kids the constellations and how incredible the stars are. Our Quilt One Sleeping Bag is fantastic for teens and kids. Your family can use it like a blanket while you're gazing at the stars, and it's easy to take back into your tent when it's time for bed. 

You know your family best, and at Near Zero, our goal is to ensure your family has the best time outside; that's why we have The DEAN and the Little DEAN, so your family has all the gear needed to have a successful trip. However, we know that the best trips end with great conversation, smiles, and less stress, and at Near Zero, we want your family to feel "near zero" stress so you have a comfortable and relaxing trip that the whole family will love. 

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