What do you do while winter camping?

Table of Contents

  • 14 fun winter camping ideas with kids

winter? What to do now that winter has hit? For many, (myself included at times) and for my partner as well, the winter can bring the dreaded “cabin fever”, especially for the kids!

have you ever given much thought about winter camping? Seriously! A camping trip during colder months should be fun and a memorable experience. I have been asking my partner recently if she would consider going winter camping? So recently I have been gearing up to going on a winter adventure in the back woods. Staying close to home to start and seeing how I like the idea of spending a day or 2 outside in the cold temperatures

I started purchasing and making, all the necessary gear to make a winter camping trip plausible to start with and secondly comfortable to enjoy it and not make it a survival type of situation.

So I am slowly getting to the point where I’ll have enough gear to go on my first winter camping adventure, so I decided to ask Erin, (my partner) if she thinks she would ever want to join me on my winter camping excursions? A legitimate question, no? Well, didn’t Erin come back with a question of her own, that left me almost speechless lol! She asked me, “what would we do if I decided to go winter camping with you eventually?” Well crap! I hadn’t actually thought that far ahead.

I’ve been so focused of how much work it will be to do this, gathering wood setting up site, cooking, and sleeping, with not much, but just enough time to relax in between, I completely forgot that if I brought Erin and or Caspian (our 4 month old son) later when he’s a bit older? That we would need things to do to keep everyone’s mind active and not board.

So I’ve come up with some ideas that I hope might make things a bit more interesting and might entice my family to join me in the future. It was a very good question Erin brought to the table Just make sure you have planned some fun winter camping activities for the kids or you’ll be wishing you stayed at home. Winter camping success with Erin and our son is going to require a little advanced planning that depends on many factors “see my blog on

To determine your type of camping? Will you be in a campground with amenities or the backcountry? Will you be camping in a tent, RV, camper trailer, or other?

Two priorities in winter camping involve safety and comfort. Without them, you won’t have a good time. Once these have been planned for, focus on some fun activities for everyone to get involved with. It will make time go by and everyone, including your wife may just want to go again. So here are some starting points while winter camping.

  • 1 snow forts

I literally just watched a neighbour and his children in their front yard build a Fort and play in it almost all afternoon. So maybe pack that shovel with you on your adventures.

Go big, or go home lol.
  • 2 snow sculptures

Have a contest to see who can make the best snow Fort or sculpture winner doesn’t have to melt snow to do dishes for the entire day. Lol.

  • 3 snowball fight

Depending on the snow density a snowball fight was always fun when I was a kid.

Now that you have a fort built, nows a good a time as any in my opinion lol. This is a classic! Why? Because it’s so much fun! You can’t miss with this one… Well, maybe with your aim. Just scoop up some more snow and fire away!

Note: Aim for the body when having your snowball fight or it might end up in tears. Little ones don’t like catching a snowball in the face, well no-one does really, do they?

  • 4 other activities
  • Tag, or picking a target and seeing who can get the closest with a snowball are great time passers depending on how many people are with you and your group capture the flag was always a favourite when I was younger.
  • 5 snow angles

Remember how fun it was to lay down in the snow and make snow angels? Making snow angels with your kids while camping… That’s a memory they’ll keep for a lifetime. A memory you’ll keep too.

Example off the internet
  • 6 Broom Hockey

Set up some hockey goals on a solidly frozen lake or pond. Brooms work great for hockey sticks and use a tennis ball for a puck.

  • 7. Hiking

Hiking, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, are all really fun activities that almost all the family can get into. Our son is a bit young to walk, so this year we have bought skis for his stroller and we have been unstoppable in the outdoors.

My friend Bill, pushing Caspian in his stroller
  • 8. Snow Golf

To play snow golf, grab some tennis balls and some old hockey sticks. Next, lay out your golf course. For holes, push empty cans into the snow or cut off the top of some plastic bottles.

Your kids will enjoy making their way along the course. Losing and hunting for their tennis balls is fun too.

  • 9 Bird Watching

Bring some bird seed or bread with you. There could be some chickadees or other small birds that may just come for a visit. I’d say kids, but I think everyone loves it when you can feed the birds right out of your hand. I know I do.

  • 10 Nature Watching in General

If everyone is able to sit at the edge of a Forrest overlooking a field for a while, you can watch the area come alive with all kinds of wildlife. This takes a bit of patience so really young children is hard to do this with but with teenagers it might be a bit more possible. Or you and your partner can have a bit of a break, take turns with one another, go off to sit somewhere alone, have a coffee / or tea/ or drink for a while and just do some observation. You’ll be amazed what you’ll see. Then come back later on and tell each other what you saw.

This photo taken by a friend of, “Mike Bromley”
  • 11. Ice skating

If you are camping near a pond or small lake, then plan to bring some skates. Since you brought a shovel to make those snow forts earlier, you can use that same shovel to clear off an area to do some skating.

  • 12. Ice Fishing

One of my favourite winter activities for sure. You don’t need to go camping to enjoy this activity all on its own, however going into the back lakes can be a bit of a trek to get to so camping there to spend a bit of extra time might not be such a bad idea once in a while.

Especially with young children they love getting pulled around on a sled or find a short (not to steep) hill and watch the slide down it for hours.

14. Campfire Fun

I’ve left the best for last. Of course inside your hut there is a wood stove to make sure everyone is warm, all day long. But what about having a fire outside not just to keep warm but because having a camp fire is so therapeutic. You will all enjoy sitting back and relaxing by the fire watching the stars if it’s a clear night, roasting marshmallows, or making some s’mores. Put on some music or hopefully one of you play an instrument and just enjoy your time with your family, or friends.

Erin, Caspian, and our good friend Bill in Muskoka 01,18,2022

I hope you enjoyed this blog about things to do while winter camping.

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