Campground Activities - Biking with Kids!

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Campground Activities - Biking with Kids!

Monday, December 7, 2020

Biking has finally become a favorite independent activity for this camper!

You may think this is a crazy time of year to be thinking about and riding bikes.  Maybe.  But not really.  If you are making wish lists and getting geared up for the next season of warm weather and camping, there is no time like now to start planning and looking for the right gear.  Plus, with shipping delays and shortages of outdoor equipment, you might want to get an early start!  Biking is a great activity at the campground, and we love it.  You can include your whole crew, and today I'm sharing what I have learned over the past few years!

Part of independent biking for young riders is finding the right training wheels.  This took us a while.

Campground Activities - Biking with Kids!

Biking with kids is both fun and frustrating.  Our son is a reluctant bike rider at this point.  He wants to do it and is afraid at the same time.  He is the Stewart Smiley of bike riding.  He quotes his little mantras and affirmations as he rides saying things like, "You can do it!"  or "Be Brave!".  Other times, he will tell me "I know the rules.  Stay alert."  It is how he deals with the stress of doing something new.  I can relate.  I just think these things and never say the things he does out loud.  I feel like he says the things many of us are thinking!  

I knew how to ride a bike as a kid.  I didn't start riding a bike as an adult until about 15 years ago at the beach.  I rented a beach cruiser and was hooked!  It was a quick and easy way to get places, and I loved it.  And while I have solo biked a lot and ridden with friends too, I really want to get my son involved in biking.  

I think that there are 5 easy ways to get out there are start biking with kids.  With anything, it involves gear and planning.  But once you have it down pat, it will just be another routine that you have adopted and hopefully enjoy!

Our biking trailer was so much fun with he was little.  I still miss these days.  

Trailer Biking


We started out using a trailer behind my bike for our son to ride in.  He was reluctant about this at first.  He mainly hated the helmet, but he quickly settled into this routine and learned to love biking.  

Using a tagalong at the beach was a great way for us to bike together and be safe!


Tag A Longs


If you have an almost rider but not quite ready for so much independence, these tagalong attachments are great!  We have rented one of these at the beach a couple of times and loved it.  Our son felt like he was on a real bike of his own, but he was attached to me.  You can go farther, and in some instances, it is safer than a scared child with training wheels.

These new training wheels have finally solved our training wheel problems.

They are much more stable and given our still young rider a new sense of confidence!


Those Darn Training Wheels


Okay.  These things have been the bain of my existence.  No.  Literally.  I didn't realize that training wheels were such a hard thing to come by in terms of actual fit and use.  We have burned through 2 failed sets before arriving at a winner.  And, I can tell you from our experience that if we had started with the set of training wheels we have now we might have an independent rider!  

A dual hitch extender was how we transported our bikes when we owned our pop up.  This is an excellent way to get your bikes to the campground.


Transporting Bikes


Getting bikes to the campground can be tricky.  With our pop up, we had a dual hitch extender that worked great!  This is not an option with our travel trailer.  And while I see RV's breezing by on the highway with a bike rack and bikes attached to their rear RV bumper, I have not done this.  Our Grand Design has been known to have low bumper weight feasibility and lots of users reporting that their bikes and rack fell off of the bumper going down the interstate.  Even at our walk through the guy at the dealership seemed iffy at the thought of attaching a bike rack to our bumper.  

There are Jack It racks that some use with travel trailers.  I may cave to this at some point.  For now, I transport my bike in the camper and have our son's bike in the back of the truck.  This could change, but it works for now.  This is probably the most frustrating part of taking bikes to the campground is figuring out how to get them there.  

Safety Rules


Have some ground rules for your kiddos.  You need to establish boundaries and rules for how far kids can go, etc.  I think it is important for kids to know about strangers and actual danger.  We have little walkie talkies that we can give our kid to hang around his neck.  I can contact him and say it's time for dinner or come back to the camper or just check-in.  But, he can also call me if needed.  And, I do think that helmets are a must.  While I didn't do this at home growing up, we do have a helmet for him to wear.  

Finally, make sure you have a first aid kit on hand.  Accidents happen, even if we don't want them to!  It's just part of being prepared.

Biking is like being a kid all over again.  It is fun and freeing.  I look forward to our son being more of an independent rider.  He already is in some ways and is still very cautious and afraid in other ways.  But, he is learning at his own speed.  And, I think eventually he will be flying around on his own without those training wheels.  

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