21 Cool Gift Ideas for Outdoor Lovers

Best Gifts for Outdoor Lovers

Yes, many of us would rather avoid the inevitable this time of year—the stress of holiday shopping. But it doesn’t have to be brutal. In fact, when we started talking about gift ideas over at OARS, the suggestions just kept coming. So, our present to you this holiday season, is a handy little gift guide to make your life a little easier in the next few weeks (assuming you’re buying for the outdoor lover on your list).  Here they are, some of the best gift ideas for outdoor lovers…

Gear We Love

21 Cool Gift Ideas for Outdoor Lovers | Goal Zero solar charger

Goal Zero Guide 10 Plus + Nomad 7 Plus Solar Panel Kit
As more of us use our devices for multiple purposes (like our phone as our camera), solar chargers have become a must-bring item for full-day adventures, weekend camping trips and backcountry treks. One of our guides tried out the Goal Zero Guide 10 Plus Solar Recharging Kit and gave it a thumbs-up for multi-day river trips and more. ($125)

Black Diamond Apollo Lantern
We can’t be the only ones who are tired of fumbling around with a book of matches in the dark trying to light our old-school Coleman propane lanterns. It’s time for an upgrade and the powerful Black Diamond Apollo Lantern, which can light up the whole campsite, is it. Plus, it can even charge your handheld devices thanks to its external USB port. Say good-bye matches and hello to glare-free LED lighting! ($59)

Sea to Summit Lite Line Clothesline
Sure, a piece of rope tied in between two trees does the trick, but the Sea to Summit Lite Line Clothesline is just so darn convenient. No clothespins needed. Plus, it’s ultra-compact and can be put up anywhere…even a bathroom in a hotel room. ($9)

Eagle Creek’s Pack-It Specter Packing Cubes
Whether you’re trying to squeeze everything into a backpack for a trek through the mountains or an overhead-friendly suitcase for a beach vacation, Eagle Creek’s Pack-It Specter Packing Cubes are a must-have travel accessory that helps maximize space and fit all of the essentials no matter what the destination. (Various sizes from $8)

Therm-a-Rest Air Head Pillow
The nifty Therm-a-Rest Air Head Pillow gives folks who spend a lot of time sleeping under the stars a great alternative to rolling up a sweatshirt for a pillow. Plus, it’s super lightweight and takes up minimal space when deflated. ($29)

Leatherman Wave Multitool
Every outdoor lover needs a good multi-tool in their kit. The Leatherman Wave Multitool, with several blade options, pliers, wire cutters and more, is an affordable and best-selling option that’s just as good at home as it is on a camping trip. ($129)

For the (Outside) Kitchen

Best Gifts for Outdoor Lovers | Dutch Oven

Lodge Cast Iron Dutch Oven
The hefty Lodge Cast Iron Dutch Oven takes cooking by charcoal to the next level. Lasagna like it’s straight out of the oven? Yup. Ghirardelli brownies after dinner? You bet. Just because you’re camping doesn’t mean you don’t have to eat well. D.O.’s are standard on most OARS overnight whitewater rafting trips. ($93)

Jetboil Flash Cooking System
On the other hand, when something hot is needed stat (say, a morning cup of joe after being forced out of a cozy sleeping bag into the cool morning air), the Jetboil Flash Cooking System is the best. Literally, this handy unit heats water for a hot beverage or meal in minutes. Talk about convenient. ($110)

GSI Outdoors Java Press
Pair the Jetboil with the GSI Outdoors Java Press and you’ll have one happy camper who is actually excited about getting out of the tent in the morning. Serious coffee-lovers will love this on-the-go French press system for two. ($35)

Klean Kanteen Classic Double-wall Vacuum Insulated Bottle
Don’t want that hot cup of coffee to get cold? That’s where the Klean Kanteen Classic Double-wall Vacuum Insulated Bottle comes into play.  It keeps liquids hot for up to 6 hours and cold beverages frosty for more than 24 hours! The family-owned company emphasizes durable stainless steel solutions to replace toxic plastic and displace single-use container pollution.  (From $30)

We Would Definitely Wear That…

Best Gifts for Outdoor Lovers | Patagonia Nano Puff

Patagonia Nano Puff Jacket
It’s warm, lightweight, wind-blocking, compressible, and although it’s water resistant, it keeps you warm even when wet. A Patagonia Nano Puff Jacket is definitely a must-have for anyone who likes being active and outside year-round. You can’t go wrong with this pick. ($199)

ExOfficio Give-N-Go Underwear
Underwear…that one present that usually induces the cringe-face once it’s opened in front of the entire family. But we promise the ExOfficio Give-N-Go Underwear will do the exact opposite. Highly breathable and quick-drying, these are the perfect travel undies.  (From $10)

Cold River Fleece Skirts
The perfect gift for “her” and totally original. Cold River Fleece Skirts are custom skirts designed for warmth and comfort in the outdoors by someone who knows best—OARS manager Kate Wollney. (From $40)

Just For Fun!

21 Cool Gift Ideas for Outdoor Lovers

Playaboule Lighted Bocce Set
Glow-in-the-dark bocce! Need we say anymore? The Playaboule Lighted Bocce Set is such a hit with kids and adults that we make sure to bring it along on most of our rafting trips. ($80)

Eagles Nest Outfitters DoubleNest Hammock
Give the gift of outdoor relaxation with Eagles Nest Outfitters DoubleNest Hammock. Why double? Because getting cozy under the trees is more fun with somebody else. The kids also love using the “nest” as a swing. ($70)

YayLabs!Softshell Ice Cream Ball
Chef Bob Anderson has been known to make ice cream on YayLabs Ice Cream Ball. Just add some cream, sugar and ice. Toss it around with the family for 20 minutes and voila!  ($35)

GoPro Hero7 Black 
You’ll be somebody’s hero if you give them the GoPro Hero7 Black. This waterproof digital action camera the ultimate toy right now for anyone who is eager to capture whatever crazy adventure they’re getting themselves into. You can even mount it on your whitewater helmet. Just saying.  ($390)

For Our Fellow Water Worshippers…

Best Gifts for Outdoor Lovers | Stand up Paddleboard

Red Paddle Co Ride 10’6” Inflatable Paddleboard
A stand up paddle board that you can throw on your back and hike with to a remote coastal spot or river? Yes, the Ride 10’6” from Red Paddle Co offers up that experience in the most popular inflatable SUP on the market today. And, it’s just as good as a rigid board. Probably better since you can go just about anywhere with it. Pump and collapsible paddle included. ($1,099)

Pelican 1050 Micro Case with Carabiner
Ask a river guide what’s on their wish list and they’ll likely say a Pelican Case (if they don’t already have one). These durable, water-resistant cases are perfect for protecting things that matter on the river or on any rugged adventure. The 1050 Micro Case is a good starter option for small valuables like a smartphone or camera.  ($20)

Eagle Creek Quick Dry Towel
When you’re living off a boat, there’s not a whole lot of room for much of anything, so a beach towel doesn’t usually make the cut. But with the ultra-absorbent and compact Quick Dry Towel by Eagle Creek, there’s no sacrificing drying off after a refreshing “shower”or a dip in the river. Also great for backpacking. ($24.95)

The Emerald Mile
We’ve raved about this book since it was released, so there’s no way we were going to leave it off of our gift guide. We’ve slotted it under good gifts for water-lovers, since it’s all about a record-breaking boat ride through the Grand Canyon, but The Emerald Mile is a highly entertaining page-turner that everyone will love. Buy The Emerald Mile here.

Other than an OARS gift card (come on, we had to drop the hint), did we miss anything awesome that should be added to the list? Tell us about it below.

Last updated 11/7/18. This article was originally published 11/25/13.



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