Camping activities for children in the winter

Summer camping doesn’t have to end at the end of the summer months. While a dip in the lake might not be possible in the winter months, there are still plenty of ways to have fun with the kids during winter camping.

Winter camping offers a unique sense of adventure that summer camping does not. It is so easy to go camping in the summer, right? Those who are able to survive winter camping with kids are modern-day Daniel Boones.

Some aspects of camping are more enjoyable in cold weather. It is less bugged, and smores are more enjoyable when the campfire is needed for warmth instead of just for s’mores.

Camping with your kids in the winter is a completely different experience than camping in the summer. However, with the right planning and equipment, it’s easy to handle and will pay off.

Unique Camping Activities

Children Winter Camping Activities Smile

Camping Food For Winter

During the summer, many campers love cooking on their campsites; however, the freezing temperatures during the winter do not make it fun to do this for hours on end. You should plan your winter camping meals in advance and invest in an efficient camp stove or Dutch oven. The low temperature will burn more calories than normal when both the temperature and the humidity are low.

There’s no doubt that children love running around regardless of the weather. Therefore, you should provide them with energizing snacks that will keep them going, such as trail mix, granola bars, etc. Protein-rich foods such as eggs, dairy, nuts, and meat, as well as carbohydrates like bread, legumes, and nuts, should make up your menu. Just before going to bed, have a snack to help your body maintain energy levels. Be sure to have a hot chocolate too!

Don’t Miss Your All-time Favorite Trails

If it is your kids’ first time camping in winter, go to one of their favorite trails or campgrounds where they have already camped before. Even better is to choose a location that is nearby your home. The kids will love seeing how different their favorite trails look in winter, and you can be more relaxed and less stressed when you know where everything is.

During the winter, daylight starts quite late but ends earlier than during the summer, so plan your travel accordingly. The time it takes to get to the camping destination is also longer as well. Before leaving, check whether any roads around your neighborhood are closed due to the snow.

Fight with snowballs!

Children Winter Camping Activities Fun

Now that you have built the fort, this is a great time to have a snowball fight. The classic game! Why not? I love it so much! Well, maybe with your aim you won’t miss this one. Just plunk down a few more snowflakes and try again! When having a snowball fight, aim for the body or you might end up tearing up. Little ones don’t like getting caught in the kisser with a snowball.

Get The Right Gear

It is easier than you think to survive winter camping with kids if you have the right gear. Those who already go camping probably already have the majority of the essential equipment and need only upgrade some of them for the season. Remember that everyone should be dry, warm, and well fed, not wet, cold, and hungry.

  • Our recommendation for winter camping is a four-season tent. It can be single or double-walled. You would be better off choosing a double-walled tent since it would provide you with more warmth than a single-walled tent. Make sure your tent is pitched on a large tarp to ensure you stay dry at all times and to ensure more comfort.
  • Getting hooded mummy sleeping bags will provide you and your kids with the maximum level of comfort and warmth while camping in the winter. In the event that you already own a three-season sleeping bag, it is sufficient to purchase a sleeping bag liner.
  • For layering, also bring a few blankets, especially if your children have favorite ones.
  • They can use these for tea, hot water, and their favorite hot chocolate.
  • Warm and cozy sleeping bags can be achieved thanks to a hot water bottle.
  • Several sources of light and extra batteries.

Playing around the campfire

Having a winter campfire with the family can be a lot of fun! It’s much more fun than sitting around the warmth of a campfire during the summer months. You can warm up around your campfire as you eat hot chocolate with marshmallows, s’mores, and roast hotdogs while singing songs about your daytime adventures, and telling scary stories about the abominable snowman. That’s right, let’s leave the ghost stories until later. Yeti season is upon us!


For an exciting downhill ride, find a nearby snow-covered hill and use a sled, toboggan, saucer, disk, tube, or alternative sled like a flattened cardboard box. Make sure the slope and its bottom are free of obstructions or pits for your own safety.

Hazards such as rocks, boulders, trees, and other obstacles can be very dangerous. We used to sled down the woods hill with my little sister when we were kids. A tree knocked out her bottom teeth, which pierced through her lower lip. I ask that you not replicate that moment.


Children Winter Camping Activities Toy

Owning or renting snowmobiles is another fun activity you can do with the whole family. There are marked snowmobile trails in many state parks and national forests that you can enjoy. Where is the nearest open field to your campsite? Kids love to be pulled behind a snowmobile on a sled or tube!

Start With A Test Run

You should try out winter camping in your backyard if your family is new to it. You may want to start with something simple, such as having dinner with your family outside. Start by staying for a couple of hours and then extend. It will be easier for you to test the quality of the gear as well as get back inside in case your kids get scared or cold if you test your winter camping gear, such as clothing, tent, sleeping pads, sleeping bags, etc.

It will help them to be comfortable in the cold weather if you build them snow forts and snowmen and play with them in the snow. Even though adults can adapt quite easily to winter camping changes, a test run is essential for kids to get a sense of the whole situation and to be prepared.

What Is It Like to Winter Camp With Kids?

You can have a ton of fun winter camping with your kids! Nevertheless, if your kids do not enjoy summer camping, they likely will not enjoy winter camping. This might not be a problem that occurs every year.

Then seek out winter camping, after you have enjoyed warm-weather camping. If you take your children outdoors, whether you are on a short stroll or a multi-day outing, focus on having fun with them. I’ve reached a point in life where life would be less fun without them.

While hiking solo, I always see something or think of something that makes me wish someone was there to share that moment with me. I sometimes drive myself crazy with them, but they make most things so much better.

You can have fun winter camping with your family if you have fun with other outdoor activities. While there are some additional dangers to winter camping, you can have a blast if you keep your children warm, comfortable, and dry!

Hello, my name is James Tinnin and I am an outdoor enthusiast, writer, and avid camper. I have always had a deep appreciation for the great outdoors, and my passion for nature has only grown stronger over the years.