What is hiking like with your kids? If it’s anything like it is with us, sometimes it’s great and sometimes it’s…well…not so much. We know what it’s like to have a kid throw a fit on a trail because we’ve been there ourselves, trying anything we can to turn a stressful situation around.
We are parents in Portland who believe strongly in the power of nature to transform kids’ lives. We know that time outdoors can stimulate creativity, build self-reliance, and foster a greater humility towards the larger world. But we also know that hiking with kids often doesn’t go quite as planned.
That’s where Super Nature Adventures comes in. Super Nature Adventures is a new business my husband and I launched this spring for Portland area families with preschool and elementary-aged kids. Our goal is to help ignite kids’ love of nature with materials that make family hiking engaging and fun.
How does Super Nature Adventures Work?
At Super Nature Adventures, we offer fun subscription packets that are delivered by mail at the end of every month. Each packet focuses on a different family-friendly trail in the Portland area that we have selected for more in-depth exploration. For every month that you sign up, your kid(s) get a packet filled with hands-on materials designed to motivate and engage them on the trail. The contents include:
- A map for the trail with “nature find” scavenger stickers
- A field guide with coloring and learning activities
- A kid-friendly Code of the Trail to help with rules for hiking
- A “Super Nature Hero” sticker to celebrate the trail
- A newsletter with information for parents about the trail
All the materials are hand illustrated in a whimsical style that borrows loosely from both the comic book and zine genres. The maps and stickers are both waterproof and are packaged in protective plastic that kids can use to carry them on the trail. Currently, we offer three different kinds of purchase options: a 1-month, 3-month, or 6-month subscription. The longest subscription is the best deal.
Choosing Each Month’s trail
We take the trail selection process seriously. We want the hikes that we focus on to be fun for everyone involved. We scout every trail multiple times with kids to ensure it meets their standards as well as ours – that it has a variety of wonders that delight kids and adults alike. Our process also involves researching the habitats, history, and geology, with an eye for trails that allow us to support engagement from multiple frameworks for the kids. Another goal is to showcase the wide variety of parks and trails that Portland offers.
We also want to help kids recognize how habitats change with the changing seasons. We love offering a subscription because it allows us to celebrate what makes each season special, whether it’s trilliums, or slugs, or bumblebees. Plus, with our waterproof maps and stickers, we have created a subscription plan to support getting outdoors no matter what the weather.
This month we are selling a packet for a trail in Powell Butte Nature Park (pictured above). We love this trail as a summer adventure because it’s one of the best parks in the city to view Portland’s surrounding mountains. We also chose it for the wide variety of wildlife and some of the best butterfly viewing in the city in the summer. Powell Butte is an extinct cone volcano; we’re really excited about this packet because you can use it to explore volcano geology with your kids.
Some Deals and a Giveaway!
Interested in trying our packets out? Right now we have a couple of great deals going to celebrate summer vacation. If you are interested in getting a 1-month subscription, you can get 15% off when you use the discount 15FORSUMMER at checkout. Even better, get 25% any 3-month or 6-month subscription with the discount code SUPERNATURESUMMER. Hurry, these deals will end on June 27!
We are also excited to announce a fun giveaway for one lucky reader here at Exploring Portland’s Natural Areas! Follow the instructions below for a chance to win a one month subscription!
- Join Michael’s Facebook group PDX Kids in Nature.
- Like the Facebook page for Super Nature Adventures.
- In the PDX Kids in Nature group, answer the question in this post: “What is a nature location in the Portland you haven’t visited but really want to?”
- If you are already in Michael’s group or like our Facebook page, you just have to complete the other elements.
- If you already own a subscription you can still win an extra month.
Wednesday, June 28th at 5pm PST Sunday, July 2 at 5pm PST. The winner will be randomly picked from the entries that evening.
UPDATE (7/3/17): the winner of the Super Nature Adventures giveaway is Eleni O’Neill – congrats!
-Bryna Campbell, co-founder of Super Nature Adventures