These Walkie-Talkies are a Must for Emergency Prep and Hiking With Kids

Photo Illustration by Scouted/The Daily Beast/Midland.


About a year back, my kids were gifted a set of walkie-talkies that became one of their favourite playthings.


Though it was great fun for them to play with their new bright plastic, super easy-to-use walkies while conspiring during hide-and-seek games, constructing forts, or running around in the backyard, the range was terrible, most of the transmissions came through garbled beyond understanding. Oh, and one of the units simply stopped working within a matter of weeks. (Granted, it was dropped multiple times, but still.)

Why did those walkie-talkies fail so quickly? Because they were toys. So, allow me to be crystal clear here: the Midland X-Talker Two-Way Radios herein discussed are not toys. They are reliable, rugged, and highly functional communication devices that can be used to stay in touch over distances up to 40 miles where obstructions are few and for multiple miles— even in dense forests or city environments. These walkie-talkies can endure rain, dust, drops, heat or cold, and hours of continuous use day after day, year after year.

Given all that, I always know I can head out from the family campsite solo and check-in even if I jog miles down the trail. I know I can count on these high-tech walkie-talkies as a reliable way to talk to my wife when we’re out on the water in different kayaks or when we’re separated by some distance out in the woods or on the road. It means I can stay in touch with my son when the two of us are camping and I head out to scrounge for firewood. And, it means overall we always have a reliable way to stay in touch even if cell service is nil, and that’s the case whether we’re out in the wilderness for fun or close to home riding out a storm or some other situation.

Midland X-TALKER 36 Channel Walkie-Talkies

These advanced walkie-talkies are a must-have for emergency prep and hiking (with or without kiddos in tow).

On the lighter side of things, while Midland is certainly not in the toymaking business, that’s not to say these walkies aren’t lots of fun. Once you have them each on the same channel, the push-to-talk functionality is so easy to use that our eight-year-old easily taught our four-year-old (in fact she was three at the time!) how to use the hardware, so they had a way to communicate from fort to bedroom, hiding spot to hiding spot—“mommy is headed upstairs, stay quiet!” e.g—and when we’re out on shorter day hikes on which there’s no need for the walkies to be relegated to parent status.

As for finding those channels, that can be done with a quick scan or by manually setting each walkie-talkie to the same frequency, of which there are so many options you can always find clear air. You can also tune into local weather broadcasts, a must for planning attire and activities and for staying safe. And you can program a Midland walkie-talkie in all sorts of ways, from playing ring tones to grab the other party’s attention to silent mode operation, to code-secured private channels, and so forth. I can’t report having needed silent or coded operation yet, but it’s nice to know those are there if the fun times turn into a drama-packed adventure.

We’ve Already Come Too Far To End This Now.

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