This was a pretty fun winter backpacking trip we had in January. The weather was terrible all over Washington State, with the exception of Blewitt Pass and northeastern Washington. We elected to explore Blewitt Pass because it was a closer driving distance. We arrived at the parking lot and it was 15 degrees outside with everything was frozen. Everyone was ready to get out of the car but no one really wanted the cold temperatures.
We quickly threw on all our warm layers and winter snow boots. After backpacks were all on and snowshoes strapped to our feet, we set off on a short winter hike to our destination…which happened to have a covered shelter and huge fireplace. We scored pretty big being able to hang out next to a fire in the evening.
Lil Red had fun digging in the snow all evening and the older two helped stomp out snow platforms to put our tents on. One big hit was bringing decorating lights. My daughter decorated the tiny shrub outside one of the tents and gave our little home some winter cheer. After dinner, we all huddled inside one tent and enjoyed watching a movie on an IPad. Bringing little extras like lights and a movie really made this trip exciting and memorable.
One thing we learned is that we could not keep our short haired doberman warm enough in the kids tent. Regardless of the two blankets, she was just very cold. In the middle of the night, we hiked my son and doggy back to the car, where they were able to stay warmer through the night by being able to turn the car on once an hour.
Winter backpacking is a much different adventure to regular backpacking with kids. Most of the adult backpacks were filled with so much extra gear to keep the family warm. As much preparation that went into this trip, it was so much fun to experience snow camping with kids and to watch them explore a different style of backpacking and camping.