Or gifts to put a twinkle in someone’s eye…
We all know people who are hard to buy for – either because they don’t seem to ‘need’ anything, or because what they’d like is out of our price range. Outdoor folk are no different – but there are a lot of great gifts that are useful, fun and relatively inexpensive. I love those things that make people say ‘why didn’t I think of that?’. I am also extremely practical/frugal/thrifty, etc…
I’ve compiled a few ideas that I wanted to share. These are a bit random – things I’ve used or reviewed mostly. Feel free to leave a comment telling us what you think makes a great holiday gift for an outdoor enthusiast!
Now, in no particular order.
Great traction devices for icy walkways. I’ve used them to go out and feed our animals when the weather is below freezing and the snow is frozen solid. It makes a treacherous trip out back much safer. Many times I’ve taken them along on hikes when I wasn’t sure of the conditions – and always been happy to have them with me. I’ve worn them out on the lakes when ice fishing and am much more sure footed than normal. I’ve had many people ask about them – and when they find they are a Maine Made product, they like them even more. They easily hang from my pack, or stow away in the glove box of my car. They are made in the USA. The Stabilicers Lite start at $22 MSRP.
KT Tape has become a favorite of mine. I injured my ankle last summer just as I was about to fly from Boston to Salt Lake City for the Outdoor Retailer Show. I knew walking around for 4 days on my ankle would not be easy. Sitting all day on the plane didn’t help with the swelling either. KT Tape to the rescue! I was taped up and walking the next morning, with fewer problems than expected. I loved the fact that I didn’t feel restricted in my movement as much as an Ace bandage would restrict me, but I did have some support. I continued using the tape all week, and found my ankle recovered much more quickly than I expected. I am sure if I had been able to stay off of it, it would have been even faster. Check out the website – the informational videos are great!
Mini Flashlight – I received a 12v Spotlight a year ago, and still use it quite a bit. It stays in my car and comes in handy for many uses – checking tire pressure, finding whatever rolled under the seat, etc. It is always with me when I go hiking or camping – charged and ready. It slides right into the car’s power supply and charges while I drive. It has become one of those small items, that make a big difference. How small? Just about 2″ believe it or not. It puts out quite a bit of light too. I’m amazed at how bright it is and how long a charge lasts. I can’t tell you how long… because I never let it die completely. They come in 12 colors, and with either a lanyard or carabiner. There are other charging options also. Under $20 MSRP.
Liquid Solutions Tea-Zer – Need a cup of tea on the run? or on the hike? I’m thinking while snowshoeing… The Tea-Zer from Liquid Solutions is a fun, simple way to make a cup when you stop. Just add the tea in the top, and hot water. Wait a minute or two, and a wonderful, hot cup of tea is ready. I’ve used this while camping and it is fantastic. I’m not sure I’d carry it on short hikes, but if I am stopping for lunch, I’m taking it with me. I even took it with me when I went to visit a friend who wasn’t feeling well. I’d never been to her place and didn’t want to have to try to find her tea pot, etc. I took the Tea-Zer and made tea to go along with the goodies we were having. It was easy, and she loved checking it out.
Lincoln Canoe and Kayak Sleds – Ok, so the Lincoln Canoe and Kayak Sleds won’t fit in a stocking, but they are just so cool! And beautiful! And unique – I just had to include them. The sleds are made by hand one at a time using 3 layers of fiberglass and a small amount of kevlar for reinforcement. The exterior is a gel coat, the same material they use in their kayaks and canoes. The colors and designs are eye catching, sort of reminds me of the Ribbon Candy we used to get at Christmas time as kids. These are much more durable than most of the current sleds on the market – and will outlast them by far. After seeing them in use last winter – they really MOVE!! Made one at a time in Maine – another product made in the USA! From what I hear, from order to shipping is under a week!