I know right now your thinking, “how on earth could you forget your baby?”. Well, don’t worry, I have never actually forgotten the baby. But I have forgotten so many other essentials, I sometimes wonder how I have managed to never leave a child behind.
Once again, we were headed out for a day hike. Like I do at least once a week. So by now I should have this thing down, right? I have the 10 Essentials memorized. I know my favorite pants and fleece combo. I know exactly how to dress the baby for each season. Why on earth do I end up forgetting at least 2 things every time I leave? This time was no different.
We were headed out to hike Thornton lake in the North Cascades. It’s late May, but the snow level is still high, and there are some avalanche zones. I knew this hike would be a little more technical, so I came prepared with my boots, crampons, and an ice axe. I also knew that the weather called for a rain.
But true to myself, I realized I left my beautiful new rain jacket on its hanger, right next to the baby’s jacket in our closet at home. Great! Just great!
Well, this little snafu caused a major wrinkle in our plans. So I decided right there, I needed a better system to make sure I have everything we need.
In order to get myself organized, I devised 4 simple steps to being ready for adventure! Its working so well, that I have managed to get out and to a hike for a whole month without once forgetting anything we needed.
- Get a big plastic storage tub. I use an 18 gallon size. It might seem a little big, but it can hold everything I need for the different activities we enjoy.
- Make a list for each activity with every item you will need. I listed every item, even lunch, and my phone. I have a list for day hiking, snowshoeing and climbing. At the bottom of each list I have a couple blank lines to write in special equipment I might need.
- Next, I attached a page protector to the lid of my box with velcro and slipped the lists inside. This way I can place the list I need on top and check things off as I put them in the box.
- I pack everything I need into the box the day/night before, and re-check the box and list the next morning before I load it into my car.
Thats it. 4 steps to make it to the trail head with everything we need to be successful and happy on the trail.