Worried that Iʼd get some really bad gifts this Christmas, I visited my local outdoor store (Peterborough, Ontarioʼs Wildrock Outﬁtters) and had them make up a list of this yearʼs top camp gadget gifts. Hereʼs the list, the same one I posted on the fridge at home for my wife to see and the same one I emailed out to my friends and family, especially the ones who continually buy me a cheap sweater, or worse, a clip on tie every holiday.
Nemo GoGo Air-pole Bivy
Instead of using poles for support, the Nemo GoGo Air-pole Bivy uses an air-ﬁlled beam that creates structure and stability, and cuts down on weight. Thatʼs really cool. Just inﬂate the central arch and stake out the perimeter. And that not all; the 2 pound tent is made up of a 30D waterproof outer shell and a 30D PU coated abrasion-resistant nylon ﬂoor. And, combined with its roomy swallowtail design and an airy vestibule, condensation was minimal. Cost = $280
Gravity Filter by Platypus
The Gravity Filter by Platypus is a new water system idea that saves you the hassle of pumping the ﬁlter – works on gravity. The process is simple enough; contaminated water is poured into one bag, filtered through a hose and a Hollow-Fiber Filter Cartridge to another “clean water” bag. The system cleans 4 liters of water in just 2.5 minutes, without a single pump stroke. Its hands free. You just hang the ﬁltration system up somewhere, like a tree branch, and let gravity do all the work for you. The ﬁlter itself works just as effectively on single-cell pathogens than any other microﬁlter. Cost = $60
Squishy Bowls & X-Plates
Eating surfaces have become revolutionary with two products. The Squishy Bowl is made of ﬂexible food-grade silicone – and can resist temperatures to 400 degrees F. The bowl squishes and packs perfectly into your pack and can easily be cleaned by turning the bowl inside out. The X-Plate is comprised of a rigid food-grade nylon base, which makes an excellent cutting board, and food-grade ﬂexible silicone walls. Fits into your pack better then a Frisbee – and even doubles as a Frisbee around camp if needed. Cost = $18
Are you distressed about unpacking bruised or squashed bananas from your lunch box? No worries. Pack your potassium-rich snack in a Banana Guard. This top selling device allows you to pack individual bananas in a safe plastic holder, equipped with small perforations to facilitate ventilation (and preventing premature ripening). It comes in ﬁve colors, including Mellow Yellow and Sublime Green. Cost = $5
GSI Coffee Grinder & Glacier Javapress
Having a java ﬁx in the morning is a must for a lot of campers and the GSI Coffee Grinder adds to the pleasure. With a few cranks of the sturdy allow handle a ceramic, conical burr grinding mechanism unleashes the sweet aroma of freshly ground coffee beans. It also ﬁxes perfectly on top the GSI Glacier 18/8 stainless steel and bombproof Javapress – a double walled thermal design keeping your coffee nice and warm for up to an hour after brew time. Cost = $20
Group Cooking System Jet Boil
This is one efﬁcient camp stove. With the Jet Boil, a liter of water comes to a boil in two minutes, thanks to the patented Fluxring fused to its bottom. Where the GCS stove gets more credit, however, is its compatibility; the stove and tiny 100-gram propane/isobutene tank (capable of boiling 12 full liters) ﬁts into a stylish cooking pot the size of a large coffee mug. Cost = $120
Many users of the Whiz Easy equate the product to “freedom when nature calls.” This device, which won the prestigious 2009 Medical Design Excellence Award, give women the ability to urinate in a comfortable, discreet way. Itʼs a small, hygienic, anti-fungal, bacteriostatic, spill free, ﬂexible, easy to use pee device that gives peace of mind when nature calls.