We all know someone like this, their ideal night is an evening fire with a bit of bourbon and some roasting sticks. Car camping is the perfect way ability to bring along some “posh” accessories I wouldn’t normally have when trekking into the back country, so here are a few thoughtful gifts you know they’ll bring along every time:
The Jetboil is what I bring along for a fast, easy cup of coffee. It heats water faster than I can roast a marshmallow, and makes the kids quiet down for a few minutes as they sip their steaming hot chocolate (side note: hot chocolate at night makes the children practically levitate and turn the volume up to 11 for hours afterwards, so enjoy those few minutes of peace while they’re drinking it).
Having a warm, comfortable blanket around the fire makes the night just a bit more enjoyable. The Bergan’s Camp Blanket fends off the cold but sheds dust, leaves, and pine needles after the fun. It now lives in the car and is pulled out often for stargazing or a good campfire session.
This little LED light is compact, simple, and perfect to provide some passive light once the sun goes down. Touch controls are easy to adjust and the little legs sit or hang on just about any surface. We left it on for two nights in a row on the red-light setting with battery life to spare. The battery charges easily via micro USB, which is super convenient since it’s the same cord as every other piece of my tech uses.
Having a warm, durable camp shirt is great when the nights turn a bit cold. If it’s comfortable all the better. The Chambray Modernist Shirt stretches in all the right places, and are reinforced where it’s needed. I ended up wearing this often during the past few months because it looked good enough to take me along anywhere I needed to be. If you want to wear something that will hold up camping, but don’t want to look like you’ve been out camping this is a great shirt for you.
In parts of the woods, mosquitoes outnumber leaves. That’s where nasty chemical sprays are commonly used, but it’s difficult to coat myself in that sticky stuff without wondering if there’s a better way. This simple device has a small butane heater that warms a small pad providing an area that keeps mosquitoes at bay without the unhealthy sticky mess of sprays.
A few days in the woods means disconnecting and getting away from it all. But you can still keep everything charged up with a bit of solar juice. This simple, robust panel folds in half for protected storage and lays flat to soak up the sun. I used the panel to charge my battery pack, phone, and lantern every day of my camping trips and it worked great for staying powered along the way.
This compact 5200 mAh battery pack is easy to charge, and easy to use. I keep it in my daily pack to charge up my phone and bluetooth headset, but camping I keep my lantern and other lights up to speed as well as topping off my camera. The metal housing is durable and handles well in hand, and the LED light indicator keeps tabs on the charge at a glance.
Speaking of battery packs, this 400 mAh battery serves as a 60 LED task light that illuminates the entire camp (with included white dissipater bag) or dims to provide a warm camp light. My favorite part of this bright light is the mounting bracket, simply clamp it onto anything, or the magnet sticks to whatever metal you drove there. The pack features a charging port to keep phones or other electronics juiced up with plenty of light to spare. The robust case is rubberized for easy grip and protects against impact as it skids across the campsite.
I used to rest my head on a balled-up sweatshirt when I camped. Partially it was because I didn’t want to lug along a big pillow, but I also didn’t like how they fit in my sleeping bags. The comfy inflatable pillow rolls up tiny and blows up in seconds to a comfortable sized little luxury pad. I slept great and now this is an essential piece of my camping gear. It’s light enough that I might take it along on all my adventures from now on, because who wants to go all the way to the woods for a bad night’s sleep?
This compact serrated blade is a solid everyday carry that stayed sharp during months of daily use. The finish on the blade is clean and smudge-free with a nice stonewashed texture that looks as good as it performs. The smooth open action is assisted with a finger nub to make one-handed opening effortless. The diamond checkered glass reinforced handle held up well to the constant abuse and still looks new today.
There are so many reasons a small, easy to carry worksurface is a good idea. Whether it’s to keep gear clean, or keep a mess contained this simple worksurface is gas, oil, grease and water resistant, folds down small and comes with some really cool features perfect for making any surface a good one to work on out there in the woods.
Nothing says relax like a hammock swinging slowly between trees. Grand Trunk’s Double Hammock is small and light enough to stuff just about anywhere, but still easily supports two adults snoozing happily in the shade.
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