What in the world should you gift that friend or family member who likes nothing better than spending time in nature? If that person is happy simply looking at trees and rocks, and gets excited about a new pair of good hiking socks, the answer to what to buy them this holiday season can be found below.
Woods Hiking Poles
I always recommend poles for the added stability and confidence. I’ll even take along an extra pair to share with someone I know doesn’t have them. Poles are light, strong and help to distribute some of the leg work to your arms. Poles are a game changer, especially if you are carrying a heavy or awkward pack, climbing, descending steep or slippery sections, or crossing rivers. If your newbie hiker family member or experienced backcountry trekker friend doesn’t have poles, you’ll elevate their outdoor experience by getting them a pair.
Woods Pinnacle 4 Season Tent
If someone in your life needs or wants a tent, this might be it! Sleeping four people, this tent is perfect for small families or a group of friends. It keeps the weather and the bugs out, and you dry and comfortable within. It is durable and has excellent reviews. Plus, it’s a four season tent that quick to set up and take down, which I appreciate because there is nothing colder than hands busy disassembling frozen tent poles. The spacious, unique front vestibule is a good place to store gear that doesn’t fit, will keep your boots dry, and keeps you dry as you take off or put on your boots.
Energizer Vision Headlamp
Flashlights are good to have on hand, but headlamps are even better. These handy adventure lights are bright and hands-off for camp duties (like finding the outhouse) and hiking back in the dark (a real possibility as we adjust to early sunsets). A charged headlamp lives in our packs, just in case, and would be a welcome gift for any hiker or camper who doesn’t already have a trusty one.
Pelican Boost 100 Sit-on Kayak
This steady, sturdy sit-on kayak is easy to manoeuvre, glides smoothly even over shallow, rocky sections, and is comfortable enough that, even at nine-months pregnant, it was my kayak of choice for floating down the river. It’s easy to get on and off of, which is handy during particularly hot paddles, and will fit a range of sizes from kids to tall adults. It will get used all summer at the campground, whether on the river or lake.
Outbound Self-Inflating Foam Camp Pillow
Get this for your camping friend or relative, and they will think of you with gratitude every time they use it. Trust me, rolling up a puffy jacket or sweater is just not the same as a soft, inflatable pillow, so this will greatly improve any snooze on the ground.
S.O.L. Thermal Survival Blanket
The perfect stocking stuffer and lifesaver, an emergency blanket is a no brainer addition for every hiker’s pack, especially that of a Canadian adventurer’s during the winter. It’s inexpensive, light, small and can be used in a variety of ways during a survival situation.
Adventure Medical Kit
In the same vein as the emergency blanket above, a good medical kit is an essential permanent resident in a hiker’s or camper’s backpack, and a gift that will show you care. From blisters and thorns to bleeds and sprains, this lightweight kit is stocked to deal with the variety of injuries hikers can sustain. Plus, the compact kit is organized by injury, making it easy to find the supplies you need fast.
Tubbs Frontier Snowshoes
Turning a sweaty wade through snow into an easy float, snowshoes are excellent for snowy winter adventures when the trails are covered in powder. The size of snowshoes you need depends on the weight and size of the person you are gifting them to. Canadian Tire carries a range of sizes and types for kids to adults. This pair is a good starting point for adults, with double bindings ensuring no heel slippage, and they are easy to get off even if your fingers are frozen.
Tasco Essentials™ Roof Binoculars
Binos aren’t just for bird watchers. A pair travels with us on backpacking and hiking trips year-round. You never know what needs a second, closer look. Being able to watch and identify wildlife from a distance can make an outdoor experience stand out in your memories. Any nature-loving kid or adult will be thrilled to get a pair of these easy-to-focus, lightweight binoculars.
Victorinox Swiss Army Steel Pocket Knife Multi-Tool
A good knife is extremely useful for hikers and campers. A small, versatile, multitool like this one is ideal to carry in your pants or hip belt pocket, ready to use, if it’s to open a bottle of wine for around the campfire or cut some paracord for a bear hang.