Does your spouse love the great outdoors? Has your dad been training his whole life to hike the Appalachian Trail?
With the holidays just around the corner, you may be wondering what your favorite hiker needs — and we're here to help. Follow this extensive gift guide, and you'll have the perfect gear just in time for their next journey on the trails.
Some of the best gifts for hikers cost less than $25. These accessories are thoughtful and unexpected gifts for shoppers on a budget, and they're perfect stocking stuffers!
1) USB Battery: USB batteries charge phones, GPS systems, or cameras on longer hikes. Portable USB batteries are a priority for any trailblazer. The Anker PowerCore is an example of a powerhouse portable charger that can recharge your phone up to 7 times.
2) Maps: An excellent stocking stuffer, trail maps of new spots are a necessary companion to your ever-exploring hiker. They allow your backpacker to plan their trek and keep track of where they're going should they find themselves without cell signal or a GPS.
3) Multitool: They're designed to aid a hiker with the element of surprise. It's not meant to replace larger tools (like a durable knife), but it's always handy to have just in case. Whether they'll need tweezers to remove a splinter or pliers to fix a zipper, multitools like the Leatherman Surge will always come in handy.
4) Reusable Food Bags: Reusable storage bags are a great way to help your mountaineer reduce their carbon footprint and stop using ziplock bags. Try out the leak-proof Stasher Bags.
5) Collapsible Lantern: Lanterns are exceptional for lighting open spaces, providing more light than a standard flashlight. The SUAOKI LED Camping Lantern collapses, making it lightweight and easy to pack.
6) LED Belt: The Illumiseen LED Belt is equipped with super-bright multicolor LED lights that will be hard to miss. Turn on the "Flashing" strobe setting for more attention-grabbing lighting!
This reflective LED belt includes an array of colors in one device. Choose from green, blue, red, pink, orange, yellow, purple, or white–whichever suits your needs best!
This fashion-forward section offers insight into some of the latest and greatest hiking apparel around.
6) Hiking Boots: A new pair of boots can make all the difference. They provide maximum protection and are extremely durable. Check out the seven boots recommended by Forbes magazine for additional ideas.
7) Hiking Jacket: Before settling on a jacket for your hiker, think of where and when they are most active in their activity. Your hiker will need solid insulation, weather-resistant material, and mobility for cold climates, making the Outdoor Research Axiom Jacket an excellent choice. In tropical (rainy) areas, opt for a rain jacket like The North Face Resolve II. It's incredibly breathable and lightweight, also making it superb for any trail runners out there.
8) Hiking Gloves: Gloves are absolutely essential for colder hikes because they keep hands warm and dry. Numb hands prevent hikers from basic tasks like uncapping their water bottles or zipping their jackets. These Mountain Made gloves keep breathability in mind and also offer touch-screen friendly fingertips.
9) Headlamp: If their trail ends up running longer than expected, leaving a less-than-ideal amount of light, a headlamp like this or this will help them see the trail (almost) clear as day.
10) Camping Sandals: For more casual hikes, they offer a lightweight alternative to a standard boot. Chaco and Birkenstock both have a myriad of suitable options.
Whether you're looking to replace your hiker's worn necessities or give them a staple they've been missing, you can't go wrong with these hiking must-haves.
11) Trekking Poles: Poles like the Black Diamond Ergo Cork increase comfort and efficiency for users. They allow hikers to cover more terrain and reduce the impact that the lower body takes on hikes.
12) Water Bottle: Hands-down, the most important tool for a hiker to have. Choose between an insulated, durable bottle like the YETI Rambler, a collapsible one like the Que Collapsible, or both!
13) Water Purifier: A hiker should never go without clean water, so equipping them with compact water purifiers like LifeStraw or the MSR TrailShot can allow hikers to utilize the natural resources once their packed water runs out.
14) Hiking Backpack: Helping hikers haul the items that keep them safe, a good pack is one of the best Christmas gifts you can give. Important factors to consider are the weight, durability, and carrying capacity of the bag. An environmentally friendly option to consider is the Osprey Archeon 30 Pack.
15) Monocular: This offers a lightweight alternative to standard binoculars but still has the ability to scout far distances. Check out two options here and here!
The oft-forgotten parts of a hiker's journey are listed here for you. These gifts are exciting, unexpected, but above all, deeply appreciated.
16) Satellite Communicator: Even if it's unnecessary, it adds an extra blanket of safety for hikers. Satellite devices like the Garmin inReach Mini give hikers a GPS and a way to communicate should they lose cell service.
17) Annual Pass to National Parks: For just $80, you can give the gift of all of America's National Parks for an entire year.
18) Portable Stove: More for extended backpacking trips and camping, but still exciting for a hiker wanting a hot meal. Devices such as the MSR Pocket Rocket 2 Stove can boil water in under 4 minutes.
19) Footwear Traction: A winter hike would not be complete without additional traction, such as the Kahtoola MICROspikes. They provide additional grip and stability in slick, icy terrain.
20) Trail Food: While also an essential, food might not be the first thought for a “gift,” putting it in the unique category. Keeping up stamina and strength is a must for hikers, so nutrient-rich food that is easily portable makes for the best gifts. There's the classic jerky, dehydrated cheese, or packs of oatmeal, but you can also have more fun with Maya Kaimal Dal packets.
Whether your hiker is new to their adventures or a seasoned veteran christened with their very own trail name, this guide is sure to come in handy for the holidays.
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