Kit out the adventure nut in your life, or yourself! We spend a weird amount of time outdoors and playing with outdoor gear, here are our picks for every budget.
Did you see those Christmas Gift Guides that came out in November? Ha! Like we’re that organised. We start writing this at roughly the time we realise that our family’s not gonna save our arse with a Kris Kringle.
We’re a bunch of hippies at We Are Explorers, and generally encourage you to not buy stuff unless you have to. If you want to chuck a stick in the gears of capitalism, why not do a big donation to a worthy cause in lieu of presents. May I suggest planting native trees in the Snowy Mountains?
But if you absolutely have to buy something, try and keep it ethical, sustainable and local. Cheap gear has a dark side. Here are our picks for the dumpster fire of a year that is 2020.
This article is chock-full of affiliate links, mostly to Wild Earth. The legends there give us a small bit of cash for everything you buy through these links, which helps keep We Are Explorers free!
Adventure Gear Under $35
I tried to buy a gift for under $35 the other day. It was bloody hard. Here’s the raddest stuff I found.
LuminAid Packlite Nova Solar Lantern
Errything’s gotta have a long name these days. This is a solar charging, folding USB lantern that’s waterproof. You can hang it from your tent or put it on the table. It lasts up to 5 hours on boost mode! Technology be wildin’.
It’s on sale for $27.55
Zorali Campfire Gloves
Hot damn! No, not your hands silly! They’re cool as in these steezy gloves from Zorali. The only thing hot will be your campfire fashun as you deftly move logs and grab billys. Pairs well with the Pack and Carry Fireplace mentioned below.
$34.95, a small price to pay for safety.
We Are Explorers Merch
Buy our stuff! The shirts are organic and fairtrade, and the Daintree one donates 10% of sales to the Rainforest 4 Foundation.
Use the code santaclaus to get 50% off!
Sea To Summit Foamcore Pillow
Pillows are dope. When you go camping, they don’t experience a decrease in dopeness. In fact, putting your head on a pillow at the end of a sick day is roughly 80 times better than nestling into a rolled-up jumper.
Sea to Summit make these with foam offcuts from their self-inflating mats. Neat!
These are $32, not bhed!
Icebreaker Hiking Socks
Deadset the best hiking socks I’ve used. I’ve had the same pair since 2014 and they’re still up for anything. The best part is that they’re always up for back to back days, kinda like their shirts.
Adventure Gear Under $70
Dunno where I’m getting these price tiers from, but more than $70 feels like a big deal. Like kiss me in some way, lips, forehead, hand, and you might be getting a gift over $70 worth. If not, it’ll have to be one of these:
Knog Bandicoot Headlamp
We’re so stoked on the headlamps from Knog. They’re an Aussie company who like to shake up, disrupt, and generally flex their design muscles. And we’re here for it. Nab one of the Bandicoots or level up to the brighter Bilby
Nab one for $53
Friend got the climbing bug? There’s so much fancy technical kit in climbing, and it’s expensive and specialised, but you know what isn’t? A chalk bag. And they’re sooo wacky. Just make sure you don’t buy this one.
Salomon Trail Gaiters
Protection against rocks, sticks, sand, dust, pretty much everything but gators really. A trail runner who loves the rough stuff will appreciate these burly gaiters.
Get ‘em for under $60.
Talk to any coffee snob, they’ll probably agree that the AeroPress is the best coffee for the lowest price and faff of, well anything. And now there’s a travel version! All for the cost of one pineapple.
Sea To Summit Sigma 3.7L Pot
How does this crew keep doing it? They refined the bloody cooking pot. It’s so nice that there’s a warning to not use it on your stove at home, because you’ll probably want to.
$65 to pretend you’re Gordon Ramsay gone wild? I say it again: not bhed.
Adventure Gear Under $200
Y’know, ‘cause you and your partner agreed to not spend over $150, but you’ve gotta break it a little to prove that they’re just worth it.
Helinox Chair Zero
Jono reviewed this thing and honestly, the homie was relaxed enough already. Why didn’t we give it to someone more uptight?
Anyway, it weighs 510 grams, for reference the Sigma Pot weighs 481 grams. LIGHT WEIGHT BABY.
Leatherman Wave Multitool
When did Leatherman’s get so cheap? Seriously I thought you were looking at well over $200 for one of these. Knife, pliers, scissors and like 10 other features included. The raw survival instinct? That’s up to you.
Black Diamond Alpine FLZ Hiking Poles
One of our trendiest writers uses hiking poles. In fact, she swears by them. Give a pair to your ageing loved one or share a pair and be cute AF. I’ve used these exact poles and they’re great, light as, fold up small and durable because Black Diamond knows its shit.
They’re almost half price at the time of writing, get in quick!
An Akubra Hat
Saddle up! Time to go drovin’. These hats are Aussie made, family-owned and very much in vogue. Aussie country couture that’ll be just as home at bottomless brunch or an outback cattle ranch. Probably.
Hey big spender! No budget huh? You don’t happen to be Santa ‘buying a gift for the family’ do ya? I can keep a secret. Here’s some rad stuff that costs a bit.
Another thing I actually own. The wider JetBoil is easier to eat out of (though I only boil water in mine if I can), has a regulator that makes it work really well in the snow and doesn’t erupt like the narrower JetBoils. I rate it.
Zorali Pack and Stash Fireplace
Protest Australia’s gas-led recovery with this wood burnin’ beauty. Seriously though, it means you can have a fire in places where it definitely wouldn’t be ok to light a fire on the ground, and it’s ace for cooking. Give one to your cheffy mate and get thanked in bacon.
The North Face Eco-Trail Down 35 Sleeping Bag
Keep your loved one toasty with this down bag from The North Face. Even their conscience will be warm and fuzzy, it’s all recycled materials and recycled down.
Nemo Aurora 3 Person Backpacking Tent
A three person (let’s face it, a comfy two) that’s under 3kg, for under $450. We truly live in blessed times. Nemo make well-thought-out tents that are packed with features, best part about this one? The vertical walls mean you can sit up without craning your back and neck. Face it, we’re not getting any younger.
Osprey Archeon 70 Mens Hiking Backpack
This backpack is proof that backpacks don’t have to look shit. Clean, functional lines, sustainable fabrics and Osprey’s classic reliable harness tech under the hood.
$381 – style ain’t cheap!
Feature photo by @strokeofstoke