Family Fun From The Inside...OUT!
Are you the ‘Indoorsy’ type shopping for an ‘Outdoorsy’ loved one, friend, or coworker? Not sure what your favorite hiker, backpacker, kayaker, hunter, fisherman, prepper or survivalist in your life already has or may still need? Just looking for some last-minute items to fill out that Christmas stocking? We’re here to help!
THE MOST ABSOLUTELY EPIC THING ABOUT THIS LIST: If they already have one, more is better! Nearly every item on this list is a stocking stuffer that ANY outdoor enthusiast, from beginner/casual day hiker to the most hard-core adventurer, needs, and needs more of!
I made this SUPER EASY for you! ALL links go to Amazon, there are no sizes to guess, and the research is done. Items start at just a few dollars and, although a (very) few exceed the $50 or $100 mark, there are budget-friendly options for all of these ideas. Where I did not have personal experience with a product, I combed the web…I have spent days researching these products and reading reviews. I am a fanatic about buying the right thing the first time.
These are gifts that will NOT be unwanted or returned!
Please note: Prices stated here may be different on the item pages, I found some GREAT deals as I put my list together over the past few weeks! I thought giving you some idea as to what to expect would be helpful.
Grab a coffee, get comfy, & get shopping!
When you’re done here, check out our next post for a few of our favorite outdoor-themed INDOOR family games, for some fun family Christmas gifts to put under the tree!
It’s More Fun Outdoors! is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. I typically only post affiliate links to products we use and love, but, with nearly 90 products listed here, we wouldn’t get this list out until after Easter if we tried them all!
As always, be sure to read and adhere to the manufacturer’s care and use guidelines for all gear listed here! And use your good common sense out there!
Rest assured I have put the same care and thought into this selection that I would for anything I might buy for us, and my screening process is VERY thorough! (I have actually added several of these items to my own Christmas list 😉 )
Now, on to our stocking stuffer list!
HAND WARMERS: Great not only for keeping your hands warm, but for warming up frozen boots on a frigid winter camping trip! A must for every emergency kit.
EnergyFlux Enduro 7800mAh – Rechargeable double-sided hand warmer, USB external back up battery pack charger, 55lm LED Flashlight: PHEW, that was a mouthful but check this out! It is not only a hand warmer, but serves as backup power source to charge other devices, AND…it has a flashlight! Multi-purpose is king on long treks! Stays warm for 6.5 hrs on high and 7 hrs on low. $41.20 on Amazon.
PARACORD: What is it good for? In a pinch, it can be a spare shoelace, it can hang a tarp for shelter, hang your food away from animals, secure a splint or make a sling, make a snare, be made into a thread for sutures, fishing line, or sewing a gear repair…so many possibilities. It is very strong for its minimal weight and bulk, and something no outdoor enthusiast should be without.
I was originally going to just research specs/suppliers and post a link to buy a length of paracord, but as I searched, I found some very creative ways to add paracord to an emergency kit!
The Ultimate Paracord Survival Kit Bracelet: Not just a wearable twelve-foot emergency length of paracord (strength not specified that I could find), within the weave of this bracelet there is a 16-PIECE SURVIVAL KIT! Contains a fishing kit, compass, ferro-rod and striker, tinder, scraper and more. $25.99 for a large on Amazon.
Paracord Grenade And Paracord Bracelet Set: Approximately 21 feet of 500lb paracord, in the form of a bracelet and a ‘grenade’ you can hang from your pack. Within the weave of these two items there is a TWENTY-ONE-PIECE SURVIVAL KIT! Contains a fishing kit (two of everything!), d-shackles, a piece of foil for signaling or cooking, a needle, a scalpel blade and more. $18.00 on Amazon.
Paracord Survival Fishing Kit: A more specific kit. Within over nine feet of 350-lb paracord you’ll have a compass, fishing kit, and fire kit. Attaches to your pack with the included carabiner! Lifetime warranty. $14.99 on Amazon. The seller is running a holiday promotion, use Holiday promo code 9NVCMQOC to save on two of these cool kits!
HIKE GOO BLISTER PREVENTION CREAM: A foot care arsenal needs some PREVENTION and hikers swear by Hike Goo!
Available in tubes or single-use packs. The singles are ideal for backpackers worrying about weight!
MOLESKIN: Every hiker and backpacker uses it at some point, and it is worth its weight in gold when it is needed!
Dr. Scholl’s Moleskin Plus 24″ x 4 5/8″ Padding Roll: 1 roll, $4.74.
Moleskin Brand Extra Heavy Moleskin – 2″ x 5 yards: 1 roll, $11.88. There were complaints about the adhesive (a zinc oxide adhesive) but one reviewer said he used this tincture with it and had good results. Tincture is $13.74 for a box of 50 swab sticks on Amazon.
GLACIER GELS BLISTER AND BURN DRESSING: These are in my first aid kit and I can tell you they are AWESOME! Not just padding for blisters, these gel pads are medicated and they are FAST relief for painful blisters. DON’T ASK ME HOW I KNOW THIS! 🙂 One should stay stuck for four days, although I never needed to keep one on that long.
Glacier Gels Blister and Burn Dressing – single pack (6 dressings per pack), $8.25
Glacier Gels Blister and Burn Dressing – two pack (6 dressings per pack) – $12.64. Get another for yourself! You won’t be sorry!
SURVIVAL KNIFE: This was my favorite research to do, because it is a top item on my own Christmas list! I am going to give you my criteria and let you look over the items yourself, because there is a lot to say about each of these fantastic survival knives!
- Fixed blade: We have several folding knives and multi-tools – I wanted a fixed blade knife for jobs our folding knives cannot do.
- Full tang: The blade goes back all the way through the handle, making it as strong as possible.
- OK for batoning: Meaning, it can split wood by whacking it with another log.
- Easy to sharpen.
- Made in the USA. Not an easy requirement anymore, except in the knife business! Mostly, I succeeded with this requirement!
- Lifetime warranty.
- Quality materials.
- Excellent reviews: No just OK, and NO reports of catastrophic failure. Bad knives are bad news…no thanks.
Here are my top picks for survival knives!
Buck Knives 0119 Special $46.60 on Amazon.
KA-BAR BK-22 Campanion $76.25 on Amazon.
SOGSE38-N Force $95.62 on Amazon.
ESEE 6P-B $139.99 on Amazon.
If you REALLY want to rock their world, include a copy of this best-seller book: Bushcraft 101: A Field Guide to the Art of Wilderness Survival
MICRO STOVE: A stove that fits in a Christmas stocking? Heck, yeah, ours go with us EVERYWHERE! These tiny powerhouses fit in your pocket, weight mere ounces, yet they will boil a liter of water in less than five minutes!
We even take ours on day hikes, maybe especially then because there is NOTHING more awesome than a hot cuppa coffee on a summit. Awesome for kayak camping and backpacking because they are super light and take up very little space. If your outdoor lover doesn’t have one, this is a must. We own and regularly use two micro stoves – so if you are not sure whether your outdoor lover has one, a second stove is a good thing. It’s a safe buy, at a NICE price, too!
We own two MSR Pocket Rockets, but I will definitely check out the Snow Peak should I need another micro stove because I am so impressed by other Snow Peak gear we own.
MSR PocketRocket Stove: As mentioned, we have two, and we love them! They boil water in 3-5 minutes, even in temps around 15-20 degrees. Comes with a plastic carry case and weighs 3 ounces, not including your fuel canister (sold separately). $34.95 on Amazon.
MSR MicroRocket Stove: Smaller and slightly lighter (2.6 ounces) than the Pocket Rocket, claims to boil a liter of water in 3.5 minutes. Takes the same fuel canister as the Pocket Rocket. Honestly, it’s a tiny weight savings over the Pocket Rocket for a significantly higher price, but if your outdoor lover is a fanatic about ounces (some really are!), this is the better choice. $59.95 on Amazon.
Snow Peak Giga Power Stove: I have no personal experience with this backpacking stove, but I can tell you that the Snow Peak gear we own is top notch and I would buy anything they make! What I like about this one over my Pocket Rocket is the additional leg to sit your pot on, for a bit more stability than the Pocket Rocket’s three legs – with a full pot of water, the Pocket Rocket can get wobbly if not on a perfectly flat surface. I am pretty sure I will give this stove a try next time I’m in the market for a micro stove again. 3.25 ounces, not including the fuel canister (sold separately). $34.84 on Amazon.
Snow Peak Giga Power Stove with Auto Start: Same as above, but with a piezo ignition so you don’t need to light it with a lighter or matches. Quite honestly, I do not hear a lot of good reviews about those ignitions, save yourself a few bucks and include a BIC with the manual stove. $49.95 on Amazon.
EMERGENCY MYLAR BLANKET (SPACE BLANKET): Practically weightless, and an emergency preparedness MUST.
Please note – these products are meant to keep you alive in an emergency. They are not made for extended, primary use.
ENDLESS USES IN AN EMERGENCY. These will not only help retain precious body heat in a survival situation, they can be used to signal rescue crews, to collect and melt snow for fresh water, a flashy fishing lure, a tarp shelter…
The list goes on, and while you can do a lot with the basic mylar sheet, I found a couple of other options to consider. Keep some in your home and car first aid kits, they are very inexpensive and take up hardly any space.
Emergency Survival Mylar Sleeping Blanket – 2 Pack: A definite upgrade in heat-retention efficiency from the basic sheet of Mylar, this is a mylar sleeping bag for one. Two-pack, one for your wilderness emergency kit and one for your car emergency kit. Reviews on this particular 2-pack indicate these are big, which is a good thing if it’s all you have between you and the elements! $4.40 for the two-pack on Amazon.
Emergency Survival Mylar Thermal 2 Person Sleeping Bag: A two-person option…even better for generating life-saving body heat! Accommodates two adults, measures 64″ X 87″. $7.95 for one on Amazon.
Emergency Survival Mylar Thermal Reflective Cold Weather Shelter: A ready-made tarp shelter for emergencies! Accommodates two adults, and measures 8′ X 3′. $7.95 for one shelter on Amazon.
You may want to consider something a bit more durable than Mylar, and these are highly recommended!
Adventure Medical Kits SOL Emergency Bivvy, 84″ X 36″: A more rugged and reusable emergency bivy than the mylar products above, but still very small and light. The choice of many fellow members of the outdoor forums I participate in. Includes a stuff sack to store for additional use! $13.99 on Amazon for one-person, or get a two-person bag for $19.99.
HEADLAMP: The easiest day trip can go much later than expected, and my headlamp goes everywhere I go!
A little tip from my many miles of night adventures on water and land: rather than fool with changing batteries in the dark, I actually carry a spare headlamp, already loaded with fresh batteries, so I am on my way really fast should my batteries die.
This is an item that every outdoor lover needs at least two of!
Petzl – TIKKINA 80 Lumen Headlamp: Budget-friendly and reliable, we carry these as spares. I have owned several Petzl lamps and they have never let me down. The Tikkina boasts an 80-lumen output which is not far reaching or exceptionally bright, good for walking around camp, and close proximity tasks. Claimed 180 hours of burn time on three AAA Batteries. Weather-resistant (this does NOT mean waterproof!), assorted colors. $19.95 on Amazon.
Black Diamond Equipment Storm Headlamp: WATER PROOF! A bit more firepower than the Tikkina, the Storm Headlamp boasts a max 100-lumen output on the bright setting, and a burn time of 200 hours. Takes four standard AAA batteries. $49.95 on Amazon.
Black Diamond ReVolt Headlamp: RECHARGEABLE BATTERIES INCLUDED! (no worries, I am giving you a couple of trail-friendly charging options here as well! 🙂 ) This rechargeable headlamp also boasts a 130-lumen output, several mode options such as red and strobe for emergencies, meter to indicate battery life remaining, can run on the included Black Diamond rechargeable batteries (charging cable included too!) or standard AAA batteries, and boasts a max burn time of up 300 hours, depending on batteries used (standard alkalines last longer!) and mode of operation. $52.02 on Amazon.
SOLAR CHARGER: I have only begun researching solar chargers for backpacking and kayak camping, so I did a TON of reading to narrow it down these three top picks. I was surprised that Goal Zero did not make my top three, but these are all great products!
Instapark® 10 Watt Solar Panel Portable Solar Charger: Dual USB Ports for iPhone, iPad & all other USB Compatible Devices, 10 watt, high-efficiency panels, 9x6x2 inches and 1lb. $49.70 n Amazon.
Poweradd Apollo2 10,000mAh Portable Solar Panel Charger: Holds four charges to an iPhone 6/5S, or more than two charges to a large capacity smartphone like iPhone 6 Plus. Two charging ports. VERY compact! 6×2.9×0.6 inches, 9.6 ounces. $22.99 on Amazon.
Anker 8W Single-Port Portable Foldable Outdoor Solar Charger: Exclusive PowerIQ Technology: Detects your device to deliver its fastest possible charge. Single charger port, 9.25 × 6.69 inches, 13.76 ounces. $39.99 on Amazon.
CARABINERS: No such thing as too many! Like Paracord, they just come in handy in so many situations.
Black Diamond Neutrino Wiregate Carabiner: A single ‘biner, easy, one-handed open wire gate. Great and safe for dangling all of your favorite gear, whether from a climbing harness or a day pack! $8.95 on Amazon
MassMall 5Pcs 3″ Aluminum Carabiner with KeyRing: A budget version 5-pack of 3-inch carabiners. Not safe for climbing or entrusting expensive pro to them while rapping down a 70-foot cliff, but good for securing lighter items to your pack, or securing the car keys inside your pack for a day hike or paddle. $7.99 on Amazon.
ANEMOMETER/PORTABLE WEATHER STATION: OK…I would not call this a necessity, and nobody really needs another if they have one already….but if they don’t, well, these are just plain COOL!
We carry one on all of our adventures to record conditions for our trip reports on the blog. But we also like to know stuff…just to know it. Awesome gift for any nature nerds like us!
Kestrel 2000 Pocket Wind And Temperature Meter: Measures and displays maximum, current and average wind speed, wind chill and air/snow/water temperature (°F, °C). WATERPROOF! For that alone, we may upgrade 🙂 $94.00 on Amazon.
Kestrel 4500 Weather & Environmental Meter w/Compass: MEGAMOMETER!!! I hope this one is within our budget some day because it is SUPA COOL! Waterproof, senses wind speed, temperature, humidity and pressure and displays up to 16 total measurements. Options include case color, Bluetooth® wireless data transfer and standard or red night vision preserving backlight. $252.32 for the standard model on Amazon. Consider picking up a carry case ($16.50) for this model!
HAND CRANK FLASHLIGHT: Exceptionally handy because they never need batteries!
Energizer Weatheready 3-LED Carabiner Rechargeable Crank Light: One minute of cranking yields three minutes of light. Lifetime LED, and a carabiner to hang it within reach! $16.94 on Amazon.
Chromo Inc Immedia-Light Hand Crank Flashlight 4 Pack: A 4-pack in assorted colors, very budget-friendly if you have multiple stockings to fill. LED light and carry strap! $14.99 on Amazon.
Safe-T-Proof Solar, Hand-Crank Emergency Radio, Flashlight, Beacon, Cell Phone Charger: The mother of all hand crank devices! Solar AND hand-crank powered light, radio, and CHARGER! $24.27 on Amazon.
BACK COUNTRY BEAR PROTECTION: Here are a few widely used options to head off close encounters safely for your outdoor lover and the bears.
Counter Assault Bear Deterrent: 10.2 ounce with holster. Bear spray is a controversial subject, some say it works, others, not so much. If you are thinking of buying this for someone, you might want to ask them what they think of it first. $41.03 on Amazon.
Falcon Safety Super Sound Horn: Our choice in the back country, our black bears are typically very easily scared off with loud noise. These horns are LOUD, lightweight and small. They also make great distress signalers! $9.99 on Amazon.
Frontiersman Bear Bell with Magnetic Silencer: Most bears will run off if they hear you coming, but may attack if surprised. These will prevent a surprise encounter. Velcro strap, and a magnetic silencer. Attach to a dog collar or harness to keep the pup out of trouble and more easily tracked if lost. $4.99 on Amazon.
CAMPFIRE COCKTAIL HOUR ESSENTIALS: A nice glass of wine or a shot of your favorite spirit by the campfire? SURE! We have that covered, too!
Nalgene 12 Oz Flask: I looked at a TON of flasks when we stated backpacking and the Nalgene was what I chose! Lightweight and holds more than the titanium flasks, and it’s a NALGENE…it will last awhile! The cap is a shot glass. $8.95 on Amazon. Don’t forget to pick up a funnel for mess-free fill-ups!
Vargo Titanium Funnel Flask: A smaller and more elegant flask than the Nalgene, and the cap is also a funnel! Eight ounce capacity. If I had not found the Nalgene, this was my choice for a backpacking flask. $66.13 on Amazon.
MoiChef Collapsible Reusable Wine Bottle: Full bottle capacity (often an issue with these containers!) Large mouth for easy fill-ups, BPA-free and no taste transfer. Ring for attachment with a carabiner. Nice!! I have a wine-loving backpacker friend that I am picking this up for! $9.95 on Amazon.
Rivers Edge Products CAMO Stainless Steel Wine Glasses: I ABSOLUTELY ADORE THESE WINE GLASSES!!! THAT IS ALL!!! 🙂 $18.75 for two glasses on Amazon.
POCKET-SIZE MULTI TOOL: We have a Leatherman, and we use it on just about every back country trip! You cannot go wrong with any of these multi-purpose tools.
LEATHERMAN Skeletool CX Multitool: THE name in multi tools. The Leatherman of choice for the weight-wary backpacker. Outside-accessible blades, five ounces, and a 25-year warranty backs it up! $66.97 on Amazon.
CAMP COFFEE – SNOW PEAK TITANIUM MUG & SPORK: I didn’t bother with any other makers…because I love my Snow Peak set SO MUCH!
The double wall 450 mug holds plenty of coffee and keeps it piping hot for a long time! Not just any old titanium set, Snow Peak made anodized pieces in different colors. The colors don’t just make me happy – it is handy to know whose is whose when we break out our mugs in the morning for coffee and cocoa. They make a snug lid, and matching sporks, too!
MUG: $45-$55 on Amazon, depending on color. I paid around $60 for ours and YES…they are worth it if coffee is important to your outdoor lover!
SPORK: $12.95 – $15.90 on Amazon, depending on color.
LID: $3.96 on Amazon.
Don’t forget the COFFEE! I use the stick packets, rather than the teabag type – the used bags are too messy to deal with in a pack-it-in-pack-it-out place (pretty much everywhere we go). The sticks take up very little room and weigh next to nothing. Just open, empty into the mug and add water, and toss the tiny packet into a ziploc for trash. I do double them for a strong enough cup of coffee in my 450ml mug. $3.99 for a box of 22 on Amazon. Here’s an organic variety, $8.74 for a box of 25 on Amazon.
LUCI LIGHT INFLATABLE SOLAR POWERED LANTERN: A fun, compact, lightweight camp lighting solution, these are very popular on my hiking and backpacking forums! Solar powered!
MPOWERD Luci Aura Light: The Luci light in an assortment of fun color choices! Reviewers did complain that the colored lanterns are not bright enough for camping, but they would be a fun nightlight for the kids in the tent! $25.99 on Amazon.
LUCI Lux Inflatable LED Solar Lantern with Frosted Finish: White with a frosted finish for softer light. $19.95 on Amazon.
BACK COUNTRY WATER TREATMENT: Even if your outdoor lover tends to take shorter trips, you just never know. Anyone getting out in the woods should have some way to get safe drinking water.
There are several excellent, affordable options that will fit in a Christmas stocking…and will not add too much to a day pack!
Sawyer Products Mini Water Filtration System: Very popular filtration system, tiny and only two ounces. Use the filtering straw to drink directly from a water source, or use the pouch and filter a bunch to take on the trail. Around $20.00 on Amazon, depending on the color you choose. A bunch of colors if you are buying for more than one person!
LifeStraw Personal Water Filter: I remember reading about these a couple of years ago – and how backpackers visiting third-world countries drank directly from rivers with this filter! Amazing! Filters up to 1000 liters of contaminated water WITHOUT iodine, chlorine, or other chemicals. $19.93 on Amazon.
LifeStraw Go Water Bottle with Integrated 1000-Liter LifeStraw Filter: Just fill the bottle and go! $29.95 on Amazon,
I’ll be honest, while I am sure these products are all completely safe when used properly, there is something disconcerting to me about sticking a straw into a creek and drinking. While I may pick up a couple of Lifestraws as emergency backup, I will continue to use our 6-year-old MSR Miniworks pump filter. This would take up a lot of stocking room, but once unboxed it is not terribly bulky. This thing is a work horse and we have filtered from some pretty yucky looking places without any issues! The MSR Miniworks is also very easy to service in the field, and…even though ours is quite old by gear standards…this past summer I was able to buy backup parts for anything that may fail. It is just THAT great! 75.91 on Amazon, and worth its weight in gold.
Lastly, we also carry water treatment tablets as backup – in case the filter breaks or fails.
COMPRESSION (STUFF) SACKS: Another item that you can never have too many of! They come in many sizes, with different closures.
Our brand of choice is Sea to Summit. We own both the roll-top and the eVent bags, each have different uses.
Sea to Summit Lightweight Dry Sack: Waterproof, with a roll-top closure. We have big ones for clothing and electronics, and extra small sacks for car key and other small items we won’t need on the trail, but need to keep safe and dry. Very lightweight fabric. $11.95 – $24.95 on Amazon, depending on the size.
Sea to Summit eVent Compression Dry Sack: These are THE BOMB for really packable stuff like our sleeping bags/quilts, down parkas and pants, pillows, etc. The compression straps really SQUASH things down! My down parka and insulated pants together pack down to about the size of a grapefruit in one of these sacks. $24.95 – $78.48 on Amazon, depending on size.
SPECIALTY FABRIC/GARMENT CARE: Wash & waterproofing for down, and for tech fabrics because they all require special care to remain effective.
Nikwax Down Wash Direct: $12.50 plus $7.95 shipping on Amazon. Sorry, I was unable to find a Prime seller for this one!
Nikwax Down Proof: Restores water repellency and insulation of down garments and sleeping bags. $12.25 on Amazon.
Nikwax Hardshell Clean/Waterproof DUO-Pack: For cleaning and waterproofing your technical outer layers! $18.07 on Amazon.
PACKABLE CAMPING PILLOW: For some, a luxury not worth the weight, and for people like ME, 🙂 can’t live without it! I actually take two, even backpacking.
I looked at reviews around the web for the best, and these three consistently came out on top. Small, light, and comfortable, or at least two out of three…hey….they are camping pillows!
Sea to Summit Aeros Pillow Premium: Got huge props for light weight (3.1oz) and supa-packability, but some grumbling about comfort and slipping away in the night. $36-$42 on Amazon, depending on size and color choice.
PACKABLE TOWEL/FAST-DRYING TECH TOWEL: Douglas Adams was SO right when his Hitchiker’s Guide advised to “Always bring your towel!”
We attach ours to our packs for quick access – besides the obvious, they are GREAT for dipping in a cool stream and wrapping around your neck on a hot day! These towels dry super fast and take a beating, mine is probably 7 years old! We have various sizes from the smallest for a camp dishcloth, medium for our day packs, and even the largest for a beach towel while kayak camping. Tech towels are AWESOME!
I have listed information on comparable sizes for easy comparison, there are many other options on the item pages!
BANDANAS/HEABANDS: Not always needed, but when they are, nothing else will do!
I primarily use a fleece band in the Winter because my ears get cold, but my head gets too warm in hats and hoods. Chris uses a lighter, wicking band all summer to keep the sweat out of his eyes.
Here are a few that look great, whatever the season, or even just for fun!
TRAIL GAMES: I know, I know…it never rains and you’re never bored in the back country. But juuuuust in case…here are a few fun, lightweight ways to pass the time in camp!
Mini Dice: 30 majorly miniature (5mm) dice! $6.39 on Amazon.
Mini cards: One pack of 2.5″ X 1.5″ playing cards. $3.67 on Amazon.
Travel checkers: A 6x7x1 metal box containing a miniature, magnetic checkers game. $8.20 on Amazon.
WOW…this is a long post but I hope it was helpful! Merry Christmas everybody!
Check out our next post for a few of our favorite outdoor-themed INDOOR family games, for some perfect family Christmas gifts!
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