I had read a few times that the Bell Canyon trail is a fun one to do with kids. When I posted that I planned on going, I received other news. Some warned it's too steep, it's too dangerous - don't do it with young kids. But it's hard for me to give up a plan. I knew that if we started and I felt that it was too much, we could always turn around.
We hiked the Lower Bell Canyon from the Boulders Trailhead. This is low in the valley and there is little shade. We were hot! Plan to do this hike in the early morning, late afternoon or on a cooler day. My 4 yo was quite unhappy with the amount of sun we hit.
It is steep for the little ones, they truly earned some hiking boots on this trip. They were able to do it without much concern for their safety, but I knew they were challenged. The trail can be narrow, so this would be a good time to explain hiking manners and etiquette with your kids.
There is no way that children younger than 4 could do this safely in my opinion. I strapped my 2 yo on my back until we reached the reservoir. There were times that hiking with him on my back was tricky, but never too difficult. I did see an adventurous new mother with a very young baby strapped on.
Beautiful views, but not much wildlife - another hiking prereq for the kids. Though they were quite proud of how high they climbed.
The reservoir is gorgeous! I've read that it can be quite crowded during the year, but we had a great time. Pack some water and snacks to enjoy by the water (and please bring your trash back with you.)
Is the Lower Bell Canyon hike a good choice for you? This is for older kids or adventurous younger ones with some experience. It wasn't my kids favorite - too hot, too high and no animals. But I'm sure in a few years, we will be back to catch some fish!