Family & The Great Outdoors

By Mild to Wild   •   November 29, 2011

In today’s busy world, few people find time to feel at one with nature and reap the rewards of doing so. With the luxuries that have worked into our lives, it is no wonder people are not at home in the great outdoors, without their cell phones, televisions, computers, etc. 

Stress levels can significantly decrease in nature, without all the worries and complications of everyday life; it allows you to clear your mind. Or maybe you don’t want to think while outdoors…with a clear mind and a cleansed spirit you can tackle those situations when you return! There can be numerous advantages for children to experience camping trips. Camping can help children learn to be aware of their surroundings, basic survival skills and it can enable them to better handle a problem if one should arise. Camping can help children understand nature and the earth, its importance, and how to take care of it.

Camping can have profound effects on adolescents, as well. It can help prepare them for adulthood by teaching them life skills and how to take care of themselves. Camping can allow for wonderful bonding moments, giving young adults the opportunity to speak more freely about their feelings and concerns that they would otherwise not feel comfortable talking about. It makes them realize that the world is bigger than some of the menial aspects of life, thus making things like peer pressure or a bad grade seem less daunting.

Whitewater rafting can be a great sport for the whole family to get outside and have fun together. The shared, communal experience is also one of my favorite benefits of whitewater rafting. Whether you are having a fun afternoon with the family or a hardcore week-long adventure with buddies, it’s always a fun experience. Rafting also requires teamwork, so you are more than traveling together, you are all working together to move that boat where you want it to go.

Statistics show that in a typical week parents spend only three minutes in meaningful conversation time with their child. Whitewater rafting trips are an excellent way to spend quality time together as a family (from a 1/2 day to 4 days!). You paddle as a team through foaming whitewater, sit back and admire the quiet scene, stroll along mountain trails, skip rocks, and just chat without any distractions or sense of urgency. Parents relax as guides take over the day-to-day responsibilities of food, shelter, and safety, children explore and have fun with things that aren’t electronic in nature, and families reconnect as parents and children appreciate each other in a new light.


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