It’s that time of year again, you know, the time of year when fat men in red suits invade houses, children are in a constant state of the Sugar High, threats are issued to said small children (Santa is watching you know), purses and wallets are emptied to the point of being starved, tinsel starts to shed all over nicely vacuumed floors, kittens get stuck in trees chasing shiny objects, over cheerful songs are rammed down everyone’s throats and sales shout from every shop front vying for attention.
Yep. Christmas is well and truly on its way. Love it or loathe it (guess what camp I’m in?), it’s here to stay. Well, for the next 6 weeks anyway.
To help you make Christmas as pain-free as possible, I’ve come to your present buying rescue with this Gift Guide for the Hiker in Your Life.
Spreadin’ the Christmas Cheer like a wee Christmas present buying fairy.
The gifts may not be very glamours in this post but they will be appreciated by your hikin’ likin’ mate.
Plus, I am hoping that my mum reads this and takes the not so obvious hints that reign throughout.
Annnnd if you are anything like me, shopping is not on your top list of fun things to do. Many a sigh has been had while shopping. Even my kids know the signs when it’s time to leave the shops now. “Come on Amelia, mum is starting to get grumpy, we should get her home now”. Bless their wee cotton socks.
This post may contain affiliate links, I may make a small commission in the event that you choose to buy something. Don’t worry, it won’t cost you any extra – you’ll just be helping this gal spend more time in the bush which is muchly appreciated!
Gift Guide for Hikers | Socks
Speaking of socks… all hikers need good socks. I know, I know, you’re thinking socks?! That’s something that your Grandma gets you. Well, my friend. Hikers appreciate good socks. Trust me on this one.
- Mirmaru outdoor socks are just the socks for the outdoorsy lad. Durable, built for strength and super comfy with reinforced bits and bobs. What more can you ask for in a sock? Not much is what.
- Darn Tough socks are well, pretty darn tough. I use these socks myself and no holes have been made and no blister has formed. Plus, they are super cushiony. I even wear these to work they are so darn tough.
- Cloud Line Merino wool crew trekking and hiking socks. Merino is a fab material, these babies are quick-wicking to keep moisture away from the feet. Let’s face it, that’s always a good thing after spending hours sweatin’ it up.
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Gift Guide for Hikers | Sleeping Bags
After peeling off those smelly socks, a good nights sleep is in order. To get that good nights sleep, a sleeping bag is most helpful.
(Hey, Ma? I need a new sleeping bag so I can give Pa back his. Thank you muchly).
- Hyke & Byke down sleeping bag. This sleeping bag is ultralight and is suitable for three seasons. Filled with duck down and compact to boot, this sleeping bag is pretty choice
- Teton Sports ultralight sleeping bag. This is a mummy shaped sleeping bag (true story: it took me ages to click why these sleeping bags were called ‘mummy’ sleeping bags. Theeeen I realised they are the shape of Egyptian mummies. Boy did I feel silly after that) and has extra insulation at the feet. Which is handy if you tend to get cold feet. Like yours truly.
- Teton Sports sleeping bag. If you don’t like the mummy shape, this envelope-shaped (normal shaped, huzzah!!) sleeping bag will be right up your alley. Super warm and super comfy. Guess what? It’s even survival rated.
Gift Guide for Hikers | Boots
Hiking boots are the holy grail of hiking equipment. A pair of boots can either make or break your hiking trip. Bad boots = sore feet, blisters and cursing with every step. Good boots = happy feet and a happy hiker.
- Hi-Tec tend to be a cheaper option, my current boots are Hi-Tec boots and I have had no worries with them at all. Mine aren’t as lightweight as some other brands but they do the trick just nicely.
- Keen is a good brand, their boots are durable, waterproof and lightweight. Ma swears by her Keen’s.
- Forsake Patch is another good brand. These boots look less like hiking boots and more like sneakers (or trainers, depending on where you are from) but have the durability, waterproof-ness (it’s a word) and other stuff that is required in a hiking boot. Don’t just a boot by its looks, that’s all I’m sayin’.
You might also like: How to choose the perfect hiking boots.
Gift Guide for Hikers | Backpack
Backpacks are kind of essential when hiking. You won’t get far without one. Unless you like carrying armfuls of stuff. Which you probably don’t. When looking for a new backpack there are a few things to keep in mind:
Some good options are:
- Venture Pal 50L pack. Lightweight, padded straps, durable and a large capacity, this makes a great beginner backpack.
- Mountain Top 70L pack. A bigger pack for multi-day hikes, this pack has internal framing, extra compression straps and daisy chains to hang that pesky gear you want easy access to.
- Teton Sports 65L pack. This pack has multi-position torso adjustment – meaning to can adjust the fit of the pack to fit a wide range of body sizes. This is a comfortable pack with padding galore as well as all the bells and whistles with compartments, compression straps and pockets.
Gift Guide for Hikers | Trekking Poles
Trekking poles can be a hiker’s best friend – none of this diamond business, trekking poles are where it’s at. They save knees, make downhills a little less treacherous and help pull you up the hills. They also make a handy ‘I’m just going to lean over, rest my head and pretend that the hill looming ahead isn’t there’ pole
- BAFX Products anti-shock trekking poles have grips that are ergonomically designed, extendable and are lightweight. What more do you need in a basic trekking pole?
- TrailBuddy trekking poles are a little bit more pricey but come in different colours (hey, Ma? My next pair I would like in red please, so I can get up the hills faster, k?), they are super tough, have cork handles (comfy in hot and cold weather, boom!) and have all the bells and whistles.
Gift Guide for Hikers | Hydration
Hydration is a key element when doing the hiking. Lack of hydration leads to headaches, sunstroke and all sorts of unpleasant happenings.
Hydration for hikers can include:
- Purification tablets
- Collapsable water bottles
- Good ole fashioned water bottles
- Water filters
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Gift Guide for Hikers | Magazine Subscription
Give the gift that keeps on giving. With a magazine subscription, your beloved hiker will thank you each and every month when the postie drops by with an envelope full of goodness.
Great mags include:
- Wilderness Magazine (hey, Ma! You can always renew my subscription?)
- Outside Magazine (US based but international subscriptions available).
- National Geographic – can’t go past the OG of outdoor mags.
Gift Guide for Hikers | Inspiration
Everyone needs a little inspiration every now and then.
- A walking guide to New Zealand’s long trail. This book maps 3000-kilometre trail in 40-kilometre sections, with maps by leading map maker Roger Smith of Geographx. An essential guide for anyone planning to walk the trail (hint hint).
- A tale from the trail: Te Araroa – The Long Pathway.
- America’s great hiking trails: Appalachian, Pacific Crest, Continental Divide, North Country, Ice Age, Potomac Heritage, Florida, Natchez Trace, Arizona, Pacific Northwest, New England.
- Great Hiking Trails of the World: 80 tails, 75,00 miles, 38 countries, 6 continents. Divided into six sections, the book groups trails by theme: pilgrimages, historic hikes, mountain hikes, wilderness trails, trails through diverse environments, and long-distance trails. Each featured trail has its own section, with a map and photo gallery focusing on what makes it one of the most magnificent hiking trails anywhere in the world.
(my coffee table books are (L-R): Hiking Photography: All you need to know to take better photos on every trail, A walk a day: 365 short walks in New Zealand and Te Araroa: The New Zealand Trail)
Gift Guide for Hikers | Sleeping Mats
Sleeping mats. The ground is hard, but sleeping mats aren’t. Give the gift of comfort this Christmas. Which is kind of like the best gift really.
- WellaX ultralight self-inflating sleeping pad is ultralight (less than a kilo), compact but inflates nice and thick. Well, nice and thick for an ultralight sleeping pad.
- Sleepingo ultralight sleeping pad is again, ultralight and comes with a lifetime guarantee. This should put your mind at ease.
Gift Guide for Hikers | First Aid + Survival Kits
First aid + survival kits can literally save yo’ ass. In fact, that’s just what they are designed to do. Why not give the gift of survival to your hikin’ bud?
- Swiss Safe 2-in-1 first aid kit + bonus mini first aid kit. Full 120 pieces first aid kit plus a bonus 32 piece mini first aid kit.
- Lightweight 200 piece first aid kit. Fits nice and snug in your hiking bag with all the essentials and without the extra weight
- Stealth Squads 42-in-1 survival and first aid kit. This kit has both survival gear and first aid along with a bonus ebook.
Gift Guide for Hikers | The Extras + Bells and Whistles
If your hiker chum has all the gear already, don’t panic, I have some extra hiking gear for those that Have Everything. These aren’t essentials but boy do they make life easier.
- Solar powered portable charger for all your devices.
- Garmin Foretrex 401 waterproof hiking GPS
- Hiking journal
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So there you have it, all hiking bases covered in one handy post. How… handy!
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