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Realistically.... backpacking/camping while pregnant?

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
So this is only hypothetical at this point since I'm still only TTC, but my family is talking about planning a backpacking/camping trip this summer and I really want to go! They are talking about hiring a mule train to pack in our stuff so some more family that isn't as backpacking savvy can come, so I wouldn't have to pack in anything except my possibly pg butt. However, it'd be a good group of days (maybe 4-7ish) and around 20 miles +/- total (10-15 from civilization). I hike all the time, have backpacked plenty, but have never been pg before. This would be late 2nd tri (possibly very early 3rd) if I conceive this cycle.

Am I nuts?
post #2 of 16
Well, I did lots of camping, fishing, hiking etc. when pregnant and loved it, but I think it's one of those wait and see how you feel. If your pregnancy is healthy you should have no problem hiking at a moderate pace, just remember to take good care of yourself. Extra fluids, carbs and pee stops will be needed. Other than being safe and not pushing yourself, I can't see any major problems. Trust your body and you will be fine!

Have fun, and hope to see you around here more in the future!
post #3 of 16
I would talk to your midwife/doctor, but my general sense is that if you did more than this when not pregnant, then it's probably okay. You might or might not feel too uncomfortable to go, so I would make sure you have a reasonable way to leave if possible. I wouldn't go backcountry camping with no way to leave except with your own feet, for example. You'll probably know before the trip if you feel up to it or not, so I wouldn't sign up for anything where your deciding not to go will affect everyone else's trip.

I went camping (but not backpacking) in mid August and ds was due mid October (so same general time frame) and while it was uncomfortable sleeping on a camp pad, it was also uncomfortable sleeping at home! Just keep in mind that you'll want to take it easy as much as possible, take naps if at all possible or turn in early. First trimester would probably have been hard for me as I had morning sickness and would not have wanted to be hiking... Second would have been tough too as I got migraines... but by the end of the second it wasn't too bad.
post #4 of 16
I'm an avid camper and backpacker. We take our four kids all the time. Still, I would not choose to do that much strenuous, sustained hiking, especially so far from civilization. Just for me personally, I would keep it more moderate. I'm very, very active during pregnancy, but I still would not do what you are suggesting. Even with my first pregnancy, waaaayy back when I was 30 LOL, I would not have done it. Can you plan maybe a couple of beautiful day trips? Or just camp somewhere great, but with less hiking?
post #5 of 16
Hmmm, I would definitely wait and see. I know during my 2nd trimester (1st pregnancy), I took my students on a couple nights hike/camping trip (about 10-12 miles total) and I felt great. But, that same pregnancy, about a month later, I would not have been up to the same type of strenuous activity.
post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thank you ladies! Good to know the idea in itself might not be completely nuts, but I'll make sure that my backing out won't mess it up for everyone. And who knows, they might be willing to scale it down to accommodate the first grandchild's momma!
post #7 of 16
Yeah, I would wait and see how you feel and if you aren't feeling up to it, maybe they'll scale it down for you. You will probably find that heat and humidity affect you much much more when you're pregnant, so you'll need to rest often and drink lots and lots of water if you decide to do it. It would probably be fun, though!
post #8 of 16
I backpacked a lot before I got pregnant, including a 200 mile trip last spring. I was in great shape, and I didn't gain a lot early on (at 32 weeks I'm only up 23 pounds). Once my morning sickness ended I decided to hit the trail again at around 14 weeks, with disappointing results. I was completely done in after only about 5 miles on a moderately easy trail. My usual before was 15-20 miles over more difficult terrain.

If you're healthy and in good shape, I can't see any reason why you couldn't try (after you talk to your midwife, to be sure), but don't count on it. Be sure you will be able to back out at the last minute if you need to, because you just mightr not have the energy. I think people underestimate how much pregnancy takes out of you - you're making a whole other person, that takes energy!
post #9 of 16
I would be fine with it as long as there is some way to get in contact with the outside world. Cell phone, two way radio...
post #10 of 16
I personally would not feel ok doing that but it all depends how far along and how you are feeling. I tend to get tired quicker during pregnancy so for me it would be a no go personally.
post #11 of 16
I think your ability to do this will just depend on how you are feeling which, unfortunately, can't be predicted beforehand.

I am 27 weeks pregnant with my first and have been surprised and somewhat disappointed at how much I've had to cut back my activities and work-outs in the past few months. I was in very good shape before getting pregnant (bike rides of 30+ miles, lots of hiking, yoga, running, etc.) and thought this would enable me to be fairly active during my pregnancy. My 1st trimester and the first half of my 2nd trimester were fine. However, beginning in the middle of my 2nd trimester I started having to cut back on my activity level WAY more than I thought I'd have to due to a number of factors. The biggest issue is that for the past few months I've been getting very uncomfortable Braxton-Hicks contractions every time I walk even at a moderate pace. I'm also a lot more winded than I thought I would be. So, I basically now stick to strolls around the neighborhood, yoga, and light swimming. I certainly couldn't do a backpacking trip right now (altough I'd love to! I miss hiking A LOT.)

My point is that I think you just don't know until you're there and it's different for everyone. You just have to wait and see. Good luck!
post #12 of 16
I probably would have been able to do it with my first pregnancy. Obvisouly if you can manage to have the trip in the second instead of the third trimester it would be better.

Remember that any kind of real pack the hip strap is not going to fit your hips once you have a pregnant belly so you migh not be able to carry much if any real weight since it will ride all on your shoulders.

I had the chance to take a great trip to Costa Rica with friends while pregnant the first time and I got talked out of it because everyone said "you never know how you will feel." I regret not going to this day since I had a super easy pregnancy and I missed the trip of a lifetime with two of my greatest friends.
post #13 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thanks again ladies! For clarification, I wouldn't have to pack anything in which is the only reason I'd consider it.
post #14 of 16
For what it's worth we have also been camping a bunch of times with the baby. Well, she is three now so not a baby anymore but don't think that a baby = the end of camping
post #15 of 16
I am all about camping, hiking and caving while pregnant. However, I am 6 1/2 months pregnant right now and I personally wouldn't feel up for it. Somedays, all I want to do is hang out in bed and read, because my stomach is too tight and heavy, my sciatic nerve in my butt hurts, or I had a restless night of sleep. Other days, I feel great, but I usually can only hike for an hour before I feel it. I went camping when I was a couple months pregnant and I think that I how I hurt my hip from the hard ground. Now...I can't imagine sleeping without my body pillow.

The trip sounds like a blast though. I can't wait to get back to my outdoor activities. The weather is so crappy here in Chicagoland and I am getting very sick of being indoors.
post #16 of 16

Did you ever complete this trip pregnant? If so, how did it go?

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