Tramping Club

What are family trips?

The Christchurch Tramping Club occasionally caters for family trips. The walks range from strolls at a nearby park to more adventurous outings including overnight. The family group trips can be found on the CTC Trip Calendar, where they are clearly marked. 

Appropriate age categories may be specified in the trip's description.

Why have family trips?

Including Children in a tramping club is beneficial for many reasons. Beyond physical fitness, tramping fosters a love for nature and an active lifestyle from an early age. The experience cultivates teamwork, problem-solving, and resilience, imparting valuable life skills. Participation in a tramping club provides a supportive community, fostering social skills and lasting friendships. Exposure to the outdoors stimulates curiosity and environmental awareness. In essence, involvement in a tramping club shapes well-rounded individuals with a love for both physical activity and the natural world.

How long are the trips?

The majority of family trips run by the CTC are day outings, although overnight trips staying at huts and camping may also be organised.

Taking children tramping

Generally, having Children on a walk requires a different approach. Depending on their abilities and age, mis-matches between the walkers are more likely. This is why the CTC caters specifically to Children-friendly walks; changing the focus from the walk to the people on the walk.

When on a walk, it is important to allow time to give the children a break, such as arriving at camp early to allow them to do their own thing, to play cards, or throw rocks in a river. On longer trips, it is good to have a day's rest, time to play hide and seek, to go off exploring, in fact, to be themselves.

How do we start?

When you find a trip you are interested in, read the description carefully and determine if it's suitable for you and your Children. If you're unsure or have any inquiries, contact the leader of the trip to discuss details such as the trip itself, transport arrangements, difficulty level, the ages of the children, and any necessary gear or equipment. The trip leader will provide advice and information to assist you. If you decide to join, please include in the sign-up note the first names and ages of your Children.

If you’re not a club member, contact the Membership Officer at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. who will send you the trip leader’s contact details.

Walk gradings

Family walks are graded based on the general level of fitness and ability of both Children and their parents. You need to work with your Children as a team—your Children can only be as capable as their parents. We encourage families to start with easier walks to allow trip leaders to gauge your level of fitness and experience and progress your way up. The table below shows how family-friendly trips are graded. It’s just a general guideline, and you’ll need to evaluate each trip according to your and your Children’s abilities.



A flat stroll covering a few kilometers on easy terrain with up to a couple of hundred meters ascent. Suitable for beginners. Children should be able to walk on their own, and parents should comfortably carry their small children.

Ōtamahua/Quail Island Loop Track, a couple of hours long walk around Bottle Lake Forest.


Moderately undulating terrain, up to 10 km in length with around 500 m of vertical ascent. Participants should have some previous experience in walking with Children. Small children will likely need to be carried for parts of the trip.

Woolshed Creek Hut, Mt Sugarloaf from Bowenvale Valley, Helicopter Hill.


More than 10 km on rougher terrain or more than 700 m vertical ascent. Small Children will certainly need to be carried for most of the way. Only for experienced trampers and their Children.

Mt Richardson Loop, Cedar Flat Hut.

Once your child is comfortable with moderate and hard trips and is over 11 years old, they can join the club and begin exploring options to participate in regular trips. Attendance of minors on club trips needs to be approved ahead by a trip leader.

Walk safety

Ensuring the safety of children during tramps is critical, this is why all children and teenagers under the age of 16 must be accompanied by a parent or caregiver.  Looking after your child during tramps is all about creating a safe and enjoyable experience for everyone involved. As a parent, your responsibility is key in ensuring your child's well-being throughout the adventure. Be sure to pack the right gear, such as comfy shoes and weather-appropriate clothing, and pack enough water to keep everyone hydrated. Communicate any important health information with the tramping group leaders and stay actively engaged with your child during the walk.

The trip leader does their best to ensure the safety of all participants on the trip, but neither the trip leader nor the Christchurch Tramping Club is responsible for any injuries to your children or yourself that may occur during the club trip and all participants are expected to follow the trip rules, which can be found on CTC - Club & Trip Rules

What gear is required?

What to take on a walk is outlined on the clubs website, please see this Gear Check List.

The club has a gear room from which you can hire a range of tramping gear. If you’re unsure about appropriate gear, ask the trip leader.

Useful resources & Inspiration