Urban hikes, the (sub)urban unschooler’s dream

If you live in an urban or suburban area, you may ache for more nature and natural experiences for your children.

(My children at Crown Hill Park and Wildlife Sanctuary, tucked away amongst a neighborhood just outside of Denver.)

Many cities and urban areas have set aside nature preserves and acreage to remain natural, and these little areas are often tucked away behind neighborhoods or buildings, just waiting to be found.

(If you’re brave enough to scramble off the sidewalk and down the hill, there is a whole shoreline ready to explore.)

When we lived in Ohio, Oak Openings preserve was one of our favorite metroparks, and we frequented it often.  Now that we live in Denver, we look for similar areas to get away into nature.

Simple internet searches can help you to find such locations, as can hiking books.  Sometimes, though, I just go to Google maps, put in Denver, and start zooming in on areas that look promising.  You’ll be surprised what you can find!

crown hill park - Google Maps

Children come alive in nature.  Nature can be found in surprising places, and children embrace it with open arms.

“Nature in the city is nature at her most tenacious–in some ways that makes it my favorite kind of nature.”

– Julia Fletcher, daughter of Janet Fout – West Virginia environmental activist, quoted in Last Child in the Woods, p. 246