Overlanding With An Infant: Tips For New Parents

In April of this year, I was blessed with my first child, Magnolia. Being an active family in the past few years, we didn’t quite know how to include our now three-month-old. After asking around for advice and not getting much, I decided to share our experience so other new parents can have something to look to for ideas.

Plan a Short Pre-trip

Typically every summer we plan a trip to Michigan’s UP. But we didn’t feel comfortable taking a five to eight-hour car ride with an infant. Luckily my parents are seasonal’s at a campground only two hours from where we live. This provided an excellent opportunity to get away for the Fourth of July weekend and see if Maggie would be okay.

The trip going north went smoothly. When we were about forty minutes from the campground, we had to pull off the highway for a feeding. This was expected since she didn’t want to eat before we left. Once we got there, It was nice to have friends and family to help watch her. It gave us both a chance to enjoy the sunshine and water. Being able to escape the heat into the A\C was really helpful. (Also a nice change for us.) It made it easy to keep her from overheating, and made a great spot for naps. Going home went alright, we left late after a day of fishing. While stopping for food before jumping on the highway, she started crying. After we calmed her down, she was okay for a while. Then she got hungry. Pulling over in a rest area to feed her, we noticed a storm in the distance. No matter what we tried we couldn’t get Maggie back down, and had to push through the storm with a crying baby for one hour. Something we’d like to try during a more extended trip is, doing a big feeding before we leave. That, combined with frequent planned stops, should (hopefully) make for a smoother ride.

Pack Lite

Even though we didn’t use everything we brought, it doesn’t mean it won’t be packed for the next trip.

  • whole pack diapers
  • two packs of wipes
  • sunscreen (used)
  • hats (used)
  • five outfits (used)
  • pack and play (not used)
  • bouncy seat (used)
  • playmat (not used)
  • sun tent (not used)
  • frozen breast milk (used)
  • nursing cover (used)
  • blankets (used)
  • baby monitor (used)
  • baby Tylenol (not used)

Know Where You Are

Going to the family campground was a great first outing for us because we know where everything was. No matter where you are at, it is always good to know where the closest hospital is. Another thing I would say is useful, is to know would be where the closet store is. Even though we brought a full pack of diapers and wipes, I wouldn’t want to chance running out.

Babies are unpredictable. When it comes to taking them out on the road, always prepare for the worst. As long as you are prepped for any occasion, you and your family can still have a fun and relaxing time outdoors.

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