45+ Best Outdoor Gifts for Teens and Tweens

By Joshua Davis •  Updated: 12/12/22 •  23 min read

Fact: It is getting harder and harder to find quality, practical, worthwhile outdoor gifts for teens who love adventure and time outside.

While the world seems to be retreating indoors and revolving around video games and social media, there remains a glimmer of hope.

My son Luke (13) at the summit of Enchanted Rock, Tx with his Osprey Ace 38 daypack.

Teens and tweens of the tech age can benefit from gifts that encourage them to stay connected with the natural environment and answer the call of the outdoors.

We have curated some of the best gift ideas for teen boys and girls who love exploring beyond their homes, whether they’re looking for something new or an upgrade to their existing outdoor gear.

Let’s give our kids even more reasons to GET OUTSIDE!

Camping Gift Ideas for Teens and Tweens

If you’re a family takes regular camping trips, it may be time to allow those adventurous teens more independent freedom by beginning to build their own camping gear arsenal.

Even if they’re not quite old enough to commandeer the keys to your precious Wrangler and head out for a weekend in the wilderness without you (insert pitiful whimper), these gifts will provide them with extra independence as they slowly transition from tweens and teens to self-sufficient adults.

If you start now, by the time they’re ready, you’ll be confident that they have the necessary outdoor skills and know-how to carry on your legacy and love of the outdoors.

1. Hammock

A lightweight, packable hammock is excellent for last-minute, fair-weather camping trips or simply lounging around camp or even the backyard.

We’ve trusted ENO for years. Their SingleNest Hammock is ideal for teenager seeking some solace in the great outdoors.

ENO SingleNest Hammock
  • Supremely comfortable, breathable and fast-drying FreeWave™ fabric
  • Made with exclusive crinkle treatment for exceptional softness and packability
  • Extended 9.5 ft. hammock body creates more room to stretch out, lay flat and relax
  • Time-tested, triple-stitched seam construction creates unmatched durability
  • Includes a custom side-release buckle and larger cordlock for easy setup and pack-up
  • Integrated stuff sack and internal stash pocket
  • Just 16 oz., the SingleNest packs down to the size of a mango
  • Specially designed carabiners easily attach to all ENO hammock straps or other secure anchor points and help maintain correct orientation for a safer, easier hang
  •  Straps and suspension system not included
Available Now on REI Co-op
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2. Lightweight or Ultralight Tent

Learning to pitch, pack, and maintain a standard tent is a critical skill for any camper, and providing a teen with their own tent allows them to practice these skills without having to relinquish the family’s gear.

Mountainsmith Lichen Peak 1-Person Tent with Footprint
  •  No-see-um mesh wall panels and the large angled door give you a front-row view as the first stars begin to peek through the atmosphere
  •  After counting several shooting meteorites (and slapping a few mosquitos), you can close up shop and turn to the internal gear storage for your headlamp and map
  •  Interior mesh storage pockets
  •  Waterproof rainfly is "cap-style" for reduced weight
  •  Bathtub floor construction with taped floor seams for added protection
  •  Clip-pole attachment lightens the weight and improves breathability
  •  Includes a footprint (something that most others don't)
Available Now on REI Co-op
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The Mountainsmith Lichen is a great gift for teens who need a space of their own on a family camping trip and who are just beginning to explore the more technical sport of backpacking and backcountry camping.

3. Camp Mess Kit

Cooking outdoors can be an incredibly rewarding experience and introduce teens to culinary arts from around the world! A lightweight, easy-to-use camping stove provides them with the independence to create their own culinary masterpieces … and to give you a hand when it’s time to cook on the next camping trip.

MSR PocketRocket Stove Kit
  • Weighs just over 3 oz. and can boil a liter of water in less than 4 minutes
  • Simple to operate, with no priming, preheating or pressurizing required; simply screw it onto the canister, turn it on, light and start cooking
  •  Fully adjustable flame; control valve is easy to operate even with gloved hands
  • Compatible with most self-sealing canister fuel
  • Minimalist set includes a 2-liter hard-anodized pot, a strainer pot lid, 2 deep bowls, 2 insulated mugs, an integrated pot handle, and 2 folding sporks
  •  Two 12.5 fl. oz. double-walled insulated polypropylene mugs with sip-through lids
  •  Everything nests within the 2-liter pot for easy packing
  •  Fuel not included
Available Now at REI Co-op
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4. Headlamp or Clip Light

There’s no such thing as having too many headlamps! Headlamps are an essential piece of gear for any camper and come in handy when setting up camp, fishing, or enjoying nature around the fire after dark.

Petzl Actik Core Headlamp
  • 3 white lighting levels
  • Continuous red lighting helps preserve your night vision and strobe to signal your location
  • Mixed beam (flood and focused) helps you to see near and far
  • Single button for quick selection of brightness or light color
  • Center-mounted pivot lets you to easily orient the lamp in the desired direction
  • Detachable, washable headband is reflective for added visibility
  • Lock function prevents the headlamp from turning on accidentally
  • Comes with 1250 mAh CORE rechargeable battery; also works with 3 standard AAA batteries
  • Also compatible with alkaline, lithium or Ni-MH rechargeable batteries
  • Battery charge indicator
  • Rechargeable via type-B micro-USB port; 3 hour charging time
  • Included Shell LT storage pouch can transform the headlamp into a lantern


Available Now on REI Co-op
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5. Lantern with Power Hub

Yes, I agree. There’s some serious nostalgia surrounding that green steel, 10-pound Coleman gas lantern you inherited from your grandfather; but, seriously, it’s time to upgrade.

A smaller, rechargeable lantern with multiple light settings provides the same nostalgic feeling but comes with a few extra perks. Oh, and how about a lantern that has won some awards?

Goal Zero Lighthouse 600 Lantern & USB Power Hub
  • Provides 600 lumens of multidirectional/adjustable light
  • Utilize 360° of light or save on power and runtime by adjusting the dial to illuminate only half the lantern
  • Lantern features collapsible legs and a built-in handle for convenient storage and transport
  • Can recharge via USB, solar or hand crank; solar panel not included
  • Rechargeable lithium battery can power phones and small USB devices
Available Now on REI Co-op
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6. First Aid Kit

No matter how careful they are, cuts, scrapes, and minor injuries can occur while camping. A compact first aid kit with all the necessary items should always be part of their camping gear arsenal.

Adventure Medical Kits Ultralight/Watertight Medical Kit
  • Designed for life in the bottom of the pack, zippered ripstop silnylon outer bag has 2 inner DryFlex™ watertight pouches to ensure contents are kept clean and dry
  • Wound care items: 3 butterfly closure strips, 2 triple antibiotic ointments, 3 antiseptic wipes and 1 pair of nitrile gloves
  • Bandages: 8 sterile dressings, 2 non-adherent sterile dressings, 2 conforming gauze bandages, 5 adhesive bandages and 3 knuckle bandages
  • 10 yards adhesive tape, 1 elastic bandage, 11 precut and shaped moleskin pieces and 3 alcohol swabs
  • Medications: 6 ibuprofen, 2 aspirin, 2 antihistamine and 2 AfterBite® sting-relief wipes
  • Other equipment: splinter picker forceps, 3 safety pins and a 26 x 2 in. roll of duct tape
Available Now on REI Co-op
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7. Survival Kit

A teen-friendly, lightweight survival kit can help give any outdoor enthusiast the confidence to take on whatever Mother Nature throws at them. This kit should include items like a fire starter, whistle, headlamp, multi-tool, and other basics.

SOL Scout Survival Kit
  • Survival blanket, signaling mirror, rescue whistle, fire striker, waterproof tinder, compass, duct tape and a survival fishing and sewing kit
  • SOL Survival Blanket reflects 90% of radiated body heat; survival instructions are printed directly on blanket
  • Mini Rescue Flash Signal Mirror and 100-decibel Slim Rescue Howler pea-less whistle
  • Fire Lite striker is waterproof and tested to produce over 5,000 sparks
  • Tinder Quik easily ignites and burns for up to 2 minutes, even when wet
  • Liquid-filled button compass
  •  2 in. wide mini roll of duct tape has many uses; measures 50 in. long
  •  Also includes a survival fishing and sewing kit packed in a vial
  •  Kit weighs 5.4 oz. and measures 6 x 3.75 x 1 in. and fits into the RF-welded dry bag


Available Now on REI Co-op
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Encourage them to experiment with the kit at home in the backyard so they are familiar with the items and know how to use them in an emergency.

Then, restock used-up items and remind them to keep it in their pack at all times.

8. Leatherman Multi-Tool

Earning the privilege of owning and carrying your first knife is a rite of passge. It signifies, amongst other things, a transition(ing) from a sheltered youth to a responsible, self-sufficient adult.

A multi-tool like the Leatherman Wave Plus provides the perfect platform for teens to learn the importance of proper blade maintenance, safety, and resourcefulness when something needs a little tweaking or repairing.

Leatherman Wave Plus Multi-Tool
  • The 18 tools include needle-nose and regular pliers, premium replaceable wire/hard-wire cutters, electrical crimper, wire stripper, 420HC knife, serrated knife and saw
  • Also includes spring-action scissors, 8 in. (19 cm) ruler, can opener, bottle opener, wood/metal file, diamond-coated file, small and large bit driver and medium screwdriver
  • Many features are outside-accessible, allowing you to access them when the multitool is folded and closed
  • All features are locking and can be operated with a single hand
Available Now on REI Co-op
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9. Daypack or Backpack

Speaking of their pack, a good camping/hiking daypack or backpack needs to be more than their repurposed JanSport from school.

A lightweight, adjustable hiking backpack will be the foundation of any teen’s outdoor gear arsenal and provide plenty of room for all their essentials on longer trips. It should have comfortable padding, breathable straps, adequate pockets, and a sternum strap to make carrying heavy loads easier.

Check out our post on the Best Backpacks for Kids – you’ll find many helpful recommendations for tweens and teens needing a daypack or backpacking pack.

Also, consider a hydration pack that incorporates a water reservoir with a drinking tube so they can stay hydrated while on the move. One of our favorites for older teens is the Osprey Stratos 34 Day Hiking Pack.

Osprey Stratos 34 Day Hiking Pack
  • Integrated raincover
  • Zippered front stash pocket and dual zippered hipbelt pockets
  • Side stretch mesh bottle pockets and internal hydration sleeve
  • Stow-on-the-Go trekking pole attachment
  • Dual side compression straps and single ice axe loop with bungee tie-offs
  • Front panel lash loops for attaching extra gear
  • Panel loading design with a burly #10 zipper delivering wide access to main compartment
  • Zippered access lower compartment with a floating liner keeps contents more organized and accessible
  • Zippered mesh pocket with key clip at the top of the pack provides easy access to important items
  • Zippered pocket on top of the front panel offers a spot for sunglasses or other delicates
  • Accessory straps on lower front panel are perfect for pads or blankets
Available Now on Osprey
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10. Sleeping Bag and Sleeping Pad

When they were little, my boys would go, go, go until they spontaneously passed out on the cold, hard floor of the tent and slept there … all night long!

But now, they’re older, bigger, and becoming aware that gravity is a beast.

The Trailhead Kit from Kelty is an unusually great deal in that it includes a 30°F Mummy bag as well as a self inflating sleeping pad that’s great fro campers and beginning backpackers … all for an unusually low price.

Kelty Trailhead Sleeping Bag and Pad Kit
  • Go-to beginners’ backpacking kit includes 30 degree mummy sleeping bag & SI sleeping pad
  • Cozy CloudLoft Synthetic insulation
  • Soft 190T Poly-Taffeta shell and lining
  • 1” self-inflating mummy pad
  • Shared duffle for grab-and-go convenience
Available Now on Kelty
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11. Camping Chair

If you’re like me, you never bothered to buy your kids their own camp chair when they were little ‘because, let’s be real, they never sat still long enough to use it anyway.

But now that your teen has developed a taste for the outdoors, they deserve their own comfortable camping chair to enjoy all that nature has to offer.

We’ve researched some great options in our Best Camping Rocking Chair post; however, if you are looking for something more compact and lightweight, we also recommend the REI Co-op Flexlite Camp Chair.

REI Co-op Flexlite Camp Chair
  • Updated seat eliminates tension zones and provides comfort for a wider range of bodies; updated pole pockets utilize pull loops and larger openings for an easier setup
  • Sets up easily using an aluminum frame that's similar to the frame on a lightweight tent; 4-leg design provides stability
  • Abrasion-resistant ripstop polyester seat also has a Durable Water Repellent (DWR) finish to resist moisture and stains
  • Folds down easily to store in the included stuff sack; only 1 lb. 11 oz.
  • Made to reflect our love for people and the planet through the use of bluesign®-approved polyester
  • bluesign®-approved materials conserve resources and protect the health of the environment, workers and wearer (you!)
Available Now on REI Co-op
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Choose something lightweight and packable with plenty of cushioning and back support.

This way, you’ll both be able to sit and relax in comfort around the campfire.

12. Fishing Gear

You don’t have to be a pro angler to fish with your kids. A simple rod, reel, and tackle box are all you need to create some great father-son/daughter memories.

Pick out a compact, portable fishing kit that can be used anywhere by taking a gander at our Best Backpacking Fishing Poles post.

Hiking Gift Ideas for Teens and Tweens

Exploration and discovery of the natural world is just built into us … and it runs wild in our younger years.

Equip your aspiring explorer with everything they need to get out there: the gear as well as the know-how!

A well-stocked daypack inspires teens to explore and connect with the outdoors.

While we’ve already touched on daypacks, hydration packs, and headlamps in a previous section, there are still plenty more items to consider when it comes to hiking gift ideas for teens and tweens.

13. Baseplate Compass

Learning to use a compass in conjunction with topographical maps is a quintessential outdoor skill for all teenage boys and girls. A basic SUUNTO A-10 baseplate Compass is a great way to introduce them to the basics of navigation, so they (and you) can have more confidence when venturing out on their own.

Suunto A-10 Baseplate Compass
  •  High-grade steel needle with jewel bearing
  •  Balanced for northern hemisphere
  •  Fixed declination correction scale
  •  Liquid-filled capsule for stable operation
  •  Detachable snap-lock lanyard
  •  Made in Finland
Available Now on REI Co-op
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If you’re not familiar with using a compass yourself, then this is a GREAT opportunity to master a new skill with them!

14. Trail and Park Guides

Learning about the national park or trail you’re about to experience before the trip even begins is not only a part of being prepared; but, it builds excitement and anticipation for the adventure ahead.

Find a comprehensive national park guidebook or trail-specific guide that coincides with your next family trip. Carve out some time to sit down together and involve them in planning by letting them pick out trails to explore, landmarks to discover, and activities to participate in.

After all, one of the best gifts you can give your kids is your know-how!

15. Trekking Poles

Now that their old and strong enough to help you shoulder the weight on the trail, they’re going to need their own trekking poles.

REI Co-op Trailbreak Print Trekking Poles - Pair
  • REI-exclusive grips offer light, breathable foam in ergonomic shapes that accommodate a variety of hand sizes and positions comfortably
  • Adjustment locks have oversize levers for easy adjustments between users or to adapt to slope angle
  • Trail baskets boast a generous size for flotation in soft soil and snow
  • Soft, lightly stretchy wrist straps enhance comfort
  • Ensure levers are fully tightened and locked before each use; levers loosen in transport and over time, so they may need to be tightened to achieve proper locking tension
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Not only will they take some of the load off your back and knees, but they also act as an additional support system, especially when hiking over rocky or slippery terrain.

Look for a pair that has adjustable lengths so they can “grow” with them and is light enough so your teen can carry it with ease.

Backpacking Gifts for Teens and Tweens

Although many of the gift ideas above are suitable for a young, aspiring backpacker, here are a few more that can help make their first overnight backpacking trip easier and more enjoyable.

Backpacking is much more specialized than day hiking, so they’ll need equipment designed specifically for the activity: ultralight and compact.

16. Compact Satellite Communicator

I’m not a helicopter parent. I know because, after 13 years of teaching the children of helicopter parents, it’s clear that I just don’t meet the criteria … thank God.

Still, as my 13-year-old creeps toward adulthood (and his own adventures without Dad), my stomach knots up a bit.

A satellite communicator and GPS is expensive; but, I rest easy knowing I can keep an eye on his whereabouts and safety with a compact satellite communicator.

Here are two options I highly recommend:

Best Overall Satellite Communicator
Garmin inReach Mini 2 GPS Communicator w/ Smartphone Integration
  • Stay in touch globally with 2-way communication, tracking and interactive SOS capabilities (active satellite subscription required)
  • Pairs with Garmin devices, such as wearables and handhelds, so you can use them to send and receive messages or trigger an SOS
  • TracBack® routing navigates you back to your starting point the same way you came
  • Share your location with loved ones back home using your MapShare™ page or with coordinates embedded in your messages
  • Use the Garmin Explore™ app on a compatible smartphone to plan trips, access topographical maps, create waypoints and courses you can sync to your device and more
  • Up to 14 days battery life in full sky view, or up to 4 days in moderate tree cover for standard activity recording and 10-minute tracking mode
  • Rugged, impact resistant and water-rated to IPX7— exposure to water of up to 1 meter for up to 30 min.
  •  ... and a LOT more!


Available Now on REI Co-op
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Best Budget Satellite Communicator
ZOLEO Satellite Communicator
  • With over 200 hrs. of battery life, it provides reliable access to 2-way messaging, check-ins, weather forecasts, location sharing and SOS alerting everywhere on earth
  • Connects to your device via Bluetooth to extend your messaging coverage
  • When cellular or Wi-Fi coverage is unavailable, messages are transmitted over the Iridium® satellite network for seamless coverage with no gaps (subscription required).
  • Location Share+ lets you share your location and bread crumb trail
  • Send SOS alerts via the app or the SOS button on the device with 24/7 emergency response monitoring
  • Check in via the built-in button (or app) to let others know you're OK
  • Send your GPS coordinates in any message
  • Device has MIL-STD 810G shock resistance and IP68 dust and water resistance (submersion to 4.9 ft. for 30 min.)
  • Includes a lanyard, carabiner, 20 in. USB cable, Quick Start guide and 2-year manufacturer's warranty
Available Now on REI Co-op
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These devices allow him to send me text messages even when he finally ventures out miles away from civilization, so I don’t have to worry as much about where he is and if he’s safe.

Plus it doubles as an emergency device in case of an unexpected weather event or other mishap.

Just knowing he has a way to call for help in case of an emergency is worth the investment. It’s peace of mind you can’t put a price on.

17. Backpacking Handbook

Backpackers evolve with every excursion, learning from trial and error what works and what results in utter disaster.

However, it doesn’t always have to be that way.

A great backpacking handbook can provide the foundation for all things related to planning an overnight excursion and provide information on what gear is needed, possible itinerary ideas, safety tips, and other helpful advice.

Lighten Up!: A Complete Handbook For Light And Ultralight Backpacking (Falcon Guide)
$12.95
  • Shows you how to pack light without sacrificing the essentials or your safety
  • Featuring solid advice and trail-tested tricks from outdoors expert Don Ladigin
  • More than 150 humorous and helpful illustrations by the incomparable Mike Clelland
  • The ultimate guide for beginners and old hands alike
Available Now on Amazon
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02/07/2023 11:12 pm GMT

18. Ultralight Backpacking Stove (Kit)

I mentioned the Pocket Rocket Stove Kit under camping gifts ideas above; but, this kit is so practical, so versatile, so compact and lightweight … it’s the kit I wish I had when I first started backpacking. It bears repeating.

MSR PocketRocket Stove Kit
  • Weighs just over 3 oz. and can boil a liter of water in less than 4 minutes
  • Simple to operate, with no priming, preheating or pressurizing required; simply screw it onto the canister, turn it on, light and start cooking
  •  Fully adjustable flame; control valve is easy to operate even with gloved hands
  • Compatible with most self-sealing canister fuel
  • Minimalist set includes a 2-liter hard-anodized pot, a strainer pot lid, 2 deep bowls, 2 insulated mugs, an integrated pot handle, and 2 folding sporks
  •  Two 12.5 fl. oz. double-walled insulated polypropylene mugs with sip-through lids
  •  Everything nests within the 2-liter pot for easy packing
  •  Fuel not included
Available Now at REI Co-op
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19. Water Filtration System

I love spending my hard-earned dollars on the latest backpacking gear. On the other hand, there are some things that (like diapers … parents back me up on this) are necessary but totally un-fun to exchange your moolah for.

Sawyer Squeeze Water Filtration System w/ Hydration Pack Adapter
$34.99 $29.08
  • Lightweight, Easy To Use Portable Water Filter Removes Harmful Bacteria, Protozoa, Cysts, Sediment, And 100% Of Microplastics
  • 0.1 Micron Absolute Inline Filter Fits In The Palm Of Your Hand And Weighs Just 2 Ounces
  • Built-In And Removable Flip Top Sports Cap; Spray Water Straight Into Mouth Or Bottle From Included Pouch; Also Fits Standard Water Bottles With 28 Mm Threads
  • Includes Two Reusable 32-Oz, Bpa-Free Collapsible Pouches That Roll Up Tightly For Easy Packing, Drinking Straw, One Set Of Sawyer Inline Hydration Pack Adapters For Filter, And Mesh Storage Bag
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02/07/2023 11:42 pm GMT

The Sawyer Squeeze Water Filtration System is as hip as any water filter can hope to be; but, it is infinitely hipper when someone gifts it to you (like diapers … parents, am I wrong?).

20. Lightweight Pocket Knife

I would love to own a $200 Benchmade; but, fact is, I tend to lose my knives … it’s an old guy thing.

Teens tend to do the same.

Gerber Mini Paraframe Serrated Knife | REI Co-op
  • Blade is forged from high-carbon surgical 440 stainless steel
  • Handle is cut from 314-grade stainless steel with an open-air design that makes it lightweight and strong
  • Both blade and handle have a non-reflective black titanium nitrate finish
  • Frame lock holds the blade securely in place
  • Design allows smooth, easy one-handed opening
  • Features a stainless-steel pocket clip for quick access
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Still, a solid, even lighter-weight knife can be had for a fraction of the cost. For me, as a teenage boy, the coolest gift my father ever gave me was my first knife. Ah, memories.

21. Blister and HotSpot Relief Pack

It’s another one of those items no backpacker enjoys spending their precious pennies on; but, to need it and not have it can completely smother all the fun in a backpacking trip.

eNZees Foot Soother Multi-Activity Pack
  • Provides 15-20 applications (depending on the size of your hot spots)
  • Biodegradable and compostable, organic New Zealand lambswool reduces friction between sock and skin, and wicks away blister-causing moisture
  • Naturally occurring, curative lanolin in the wool soothes and softens your skin
  • Perfect for hikers, skiers, bikers, dancers, walkers or anyone who spends time on their feet
  • eNZees weave their fibers into your socks as you walk, helping hold it into position; when you're ready to remove them, a simple, firm tug releases them from your socks
  • No scissors, tape or glue needed
  • Lightweight, compact and packaged in water-resistant packaging for on-the-go use
Available Now on REI Co-op
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22. Ultra Minimalist Sandals

There is nothing more satisfying then peeling off your boots and socks after a long day of hiking and letting your tired dogs breathe.

The ultra-minimalist sandals from Xero Shoes allows your feet to breath and flex while protecting them with a durable yet incredibly flexible sole.

Xero Shoes Lightweight Minimalist Genesis Sandal
$47.99
  • Rubber sole
  • Lightweight sandal that features a super soft toe loop and grippy soles for unmatched comfort
  • Patent-pending tension adjustment system! Find the perfect fit in seconds, then you can slide your Xeros on and off in a flash
  • 5mm FeelTrue sole offers just-right protection and the ground feedback that your feet love.
  • Promotes healthy and sustainable lifestyles which is why the Genesis is made with zero animal products; you can trim your sandal to match your foot shape with kitchen scissors
  • Available in men's, women's, and youth sizes
Available Now on Amazon
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02/07/2023 11:32 pm GMT

It’s the perfect gift for any aspiring backpacker who wants to keep their pack weight low, but still enjoys protection and comfort while chillin’ at camp.

23. Backcountry Trowel

The same diaper philosophy I applied to the water filter above applies here. It probably doesn’t rank on their list of “Coolest Gifts, ” and …

…if you asked me, I would have said “no” to a $20 trowel; but, if someone gave it to me … well then that’s a different story.

TheTentLab The Deuce #2 UL Backcountry Trowel
  •  4 teeth on the leading edge of the blade are shaped and placed for cutting roots up to 0.5 in. thick as you run into them in your cat hole; teeth don't obstruct normal digging
  • Finger-grip contours on the handle ensure a secure grip
  • Thin edge of aerospace-grade aluminum cuts through small roots and tough ground
  • Weighs just 17 grams (0.6 o.z), which is the weight of 3 U.S. quarters
Available Now on REI Co-op
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Who says you have to sacrifice style when poopin’ in the woods … not me!

24. Ladies’ Wilderness Potty Kit

I am one of the (too few) fortunate guys out there that married a girl who loves camping and hiking in the great outdoors.

As such, I am keenly aware that, when it comes to doin’ your business in the woods, the ladies get the proverbial shaft.

Kula Wilderness Potty Kit
  • ULTIMATE leave no trace wilderness/travel/everything potty kit
  • Antimicrobial, waterproof hygiene bag with interior snap pocket
  • Personal Urination Funnel
  • Ultralight trowel
  • Compact Nalgene soap container
  • Kula Cloth
  • Weighs 5.1 oz. with dimensions 6" x 9" stowed
Available Now on Kula Cloth
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Here’s an outdoor gift for teen girls that makes a huge difference in ‘doing business’ outdoors.

25. Gear Repair Patches

Down Jackets. Sleeping Bags. Windbreakers. Backpacks.

Everything gets a rip in it eventually. And sewing up that hole takes time … and more supplies.

Gear Aid Tenacious Tape Repair Patches are easily one of the top stocking stuffers for teenage adventurers.

Gear Aid Tenacious Tape Gear Patches
$10.69
  • Easily complete a jacket repair with peel-and-stick Tenacious Tape Gear Patches; no heat required, just remove backing and apply
  • Ultra-strong adhesive bonds permanently to synthetic materials including nylon, vinyl, rubber and plastic; it’s also machine washable
  • Make nearly-invisible repairs to holes and tears on outerwear, backpacks, sleeping bags, and gloves with this black nylon fabric tape
Available Now on Amazon
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02/07/2023 11:47 pm GMT

It’s lightweight, incredibly strong, and looks cool (hip, groovy, rad, wicked, sick … avant-garde… whatever it is they’re saying these days) when applied. Plus it sticks to just about any fabric you throw at it.

26. Bear Canister

Depending on where your aspiring backpacker loves spending time, a bear canister is a great gift … even if they’re not visiting bear country.

BearVault Bear Canister for Backpacking – 4 sizes
$73.50 $69.95
  • Hikers of every age, build, and fitness can now carry their own food safely.
  • For backpacking ultralight with 1-2 days of food for regular hikers, or pack calories like an ultralight pro and get 4-5 days in.
  • Leave your lunch at the base in this little bear resistant canister to protect it from bears and wildlife while you have fun!
  • Clear Sides, Wide Opening, Tool-Free, Doubles as a Camp Stool
  • Grizzly (IGBC) Tested and Approved as bear resistant food storage
Available Now on Amazon
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02/07/2023 11:52 pm GMT

True, stashing your grub in a bear canister prevents waking up to one of nature’s largest mammals visiting you for a snack, it also keeps the little critters at bay who would, otherwise, chew through your tent and pack to get at the goodies inside.

Neither is pleasant to wake up to. I speak from experience.

27. Merino Wool Socks

Believe it or not, there exists such a company that produces high-quality, comfortable merino wool socks… and guarantees them FOR LIFE! I lie not!

Darn Tough Hiker Boot Sock Full Cushion
$26.99
  • 66% Merino Wool 32% Nylon 2% Lycra Spandex – Machine Washable
  • Midweight sock with high density cushioning throughout the entire sock for full on comfort and performance
  • True Seamless technology allows for an undetectable seam fusion for an Ultra-smooth, invisible feel.
  • Sits mid-calf for added protection and warmth
  • Fast action wicking pulls moisture away from skin, so no more sweaty, stinky socks
  • All weather performance that keeps you cool in the summer and warm in the winter.
  • Guaranteed for Life. No strings. No conditions.
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02/07/2023 11:57 pm GMT

There are multiple styles and different colors available.

28. National Park Pass

This is a no-brainer for any family or individual who frequents our nation’s national parks more than 4 times a year. It pays for itself many times over.

America the Beautiful National Park Pass
  • Honored at sites managed by the Forest Service, National Park Service, Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation and Army Corps of Engineers
  • Covers entrance for a driver and all passengers in a personal vehicle at per-vehicle fee areas or up to 4 adults at sites that charge per person (kids 15 & under get in free)
  • Covers park admission only
  •  Pass is valid for 1 year from the month of purchase
Available Now on REI Co-op
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29. REI Gift Cards

A piece of Heaven’s commercial district broke off and fell to Earth. Mankind looked upon it with wonder and called it …

… R.E.I.

Who doesn’t love an REI gift card?

REI Gift Cards: Give the Gift of the Outdoors
Availabe Now on REI Co-op
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It’s like a free pass to the candy store of outdoor gear and apparel.

This makes a great stocking stuffer for active teens that love outdoor adventures.

Backyard Games and Outdoor Activities

If your tween or teen never ventures into the backyard when they’re at home, it may be because there’s nothing back there worth venturing to.

Honestly, if your backyard is nothing but dirt and dog turds, I don’t blame them.

Creating an engaging, welcoming outdoor space inspires tweens and teens to GET OUTSIDE!

Create a welcoming space in whatever outdoor space you own that makes cracking the backdoor worthwhile for kids of all ages (including yourself). Oh, and go out there with them every so often.

Here are some ideas to get you started (for the backyard and beyond).

30. Hammock Chair

Look, even if they’re still texting and scrolling, at least they’re being exposed to some fresh air and Vitamin D as opposed to being holed up in their room.

Shoot, they might even be inspired to write in a journal or read a book!

It’s a start.

ENO Lounger Hanging Chair | REI Co-op
  • Hang the chair from a tree branch or other sturdy object and then adjust the position of the footrest and the angle of recline on the chair to make yourself comfortable
  • Includes a plush headrest that supports your neck
  • Keep a cold drink nearby in the attached drink holder and stash a sandwich and book in the built-in pockets
  • Made with a sturdy 7075 aluminum frame and 210-denier ripstop nylon
  • Weight capacity of 250 lbs.
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And there’s no better way to enjoy the outdoors than by chillin’ in a hammock or seat swing. Peace and serenity abound!

Helpful Tip: I used to recommend an inflatable lounger in place of a hammock or hanging chair; but, now that inflatable loungers have been on the market for a while, it’s pretty clear that some R&D is still needed to produce one that is worth buying.

31. Slackline or Ninjaline

Got two trees? Put ’em to work!

Slacklining and Ninjalines are great ways to get outside and test your balance, agility, coordination, and problem-solving skills.

B BRANTON Ninja Obstacle Course + Hammock Swing for Kids
$139.99
  • Includes 50 foot slackline, gymnastic rings, monkey bar holds, monkey fist, obstacle net, swing, and hammock chair
  • Extra grip tape provided
  • Can be rearranged any way, any time
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02/08/2023 12:23 am GMT

It’s also a fun competition among siblings or friends who gather ’round the yard. Best of all, it’s an activity that kids (teenagers included) will keep coming back to.

32. Trampoline

Is there anything better than bouncing an afternoon away on your own backyard trampoline?

No. No, there isn’t. ‘Nuff said.

Zupapa No-Gap Design Trampoline for Kids
$679.99
  • 10', 12', 14', 15', and 16' sizes available
  • Exceeds all ASTM and TUV safety protocols
  • Springs are completely covered with thick, durable pads
  • Hot-dip galvanizing technology to make the frame anti-rust, more stable and durable
  • Max weight capacity up to 425 lbs.(12,14,15,16ft& 375lbs. (8,10ft)
  • Galvanized rust resistant springs(7 inch) offer impressive bounce
  • Anti-UV jumping mat provides more weight capacity
  • 6ft higher enclosure net ensures absolute safety and fastness when jumping
  • Poles are padded with 10mm foam protecting your kids from banging against the steel pole
  • Unbeatable Warranty: 10 Years for Frame, 2 Years for Jumping Mat & Safety Pad & Enclosure Net & Springs, and free replacement for other parts.
Available Now on Amazon
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02/08/2023 12:32 am GMT

Oh, and they’re excellent for star-gazing with the entire family at night!

33. A Seriously Good Telescope

If you’re going to get a telescope, then get a REAL telescope. It’s worth saving your pennies for.

After all, nothing’s worse than getting all excited about the cheaper telescope you just settled for only to find out that you can’t see a single star.

Best Telescope for All Skill Levels
Celestron NexStar 8SE Schmidt-Cassegrain Computerized Telescope
$1,599.00
  • Celestron combines legendary 8" Schmidt-Cassegrian optics with updated technology and the latest features for an amazing stargazing experience for beginners and experienced observers alike.
  • Large, 8-inch primary mirror packs enough light-gathering ability to deliver spectacular views of the Moon and planets, along with deep-sky objects like the Whirlpool Galaxy and Hercules Globular Cluster
  • With a database of 40,000+ celestial objects, NexStar SE's GoTo mount locates and tracks objects for you
  • Assembling the telescope takes just a few minutes
  • Buy with confidence from Celestron, a leading telescope brand in California since 1960.
  • Purchasing from an Authorized Dealer on Amazon gives you a 2-Year US Warranty and unlimited support from our team of US-based experts.
  • Includes a free download of Starry Night Special Edition
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02/08/2023 08:17 am GMT

Besides, the quality of optics and mechanics on a good telescope, like the Celestron NexStar 8SE, will make your aspiring astronaut forget they’re even using a telescope! The views are THAT amazing.

Get the whole family outside to explore the night sky by downloading a Stargazing app like Star Chart and prepare yourself for a great time.

Be sure to save enough pennies to grab a tripod, too.

34. Backyard Games

Get the whole family outside and involved in some friendly (most of the time) competition.

Outdoor NERF Battles are essentially the great equalizer between teens and their younger siblings … and parents!

Kubb, Croquet, Bocce Ball, Cornhole, outdoor board games … there’s always a new game for the backyard or campsite waiting to be discovered.

Choose your favorite or choose them all! It’s an easy way to get active, get fit and have a blast, too. Here are a few of our family favorites:

NERF Elite 2.0 Echo CS-10 Blaster
$33.99 $29.50
  • UPGRADE-READY BLASTER: Customize the blaster for every battle or mission by taking advantage of the removable stock and removable barrel extension, and 5 tactical rails
  • INCLUDES 24 NERF DARTS: Comes with 24 Official Nerf darts to fully load the 10-dart clip -- and 14 more darts for reloads
  • SLAM FIRE: Move the priming slide backward and forward and press the trigger to fire 1 dart. Hold down the trigger and keep moving the slide to slam-fire all 10 darts fast
  • FIRES DARTS UP TO 90 FEET (27 METERS): Go the distance with this blaster that fires darts up to 90 feet (27 meters)
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02/08/2023 12:37 am GMT
GoSports Backyard Size Kubb Viking Clash Toss Game Set
$44.99
  • Settle the score with GoSports Kubb - a fun all-ages lawn game inspired by old Nordic tradition!
  • Includes 10 Kubb Blocks, 1 King, 6 Batons, 4 Corner Stakes and a Travel Carry Case
  • Kubb rules are included and easy to learn - simply choose your side and toss batons to knock down your rival's army of kubbs first and the king to win!
  • Constructed with hand sanded knot-free hardwood for added durability and features laser engraved team graphics
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02/08/2023 12:38 am GMT
Original Spikeball Game Set
$59.99
  • IF VOLLEYBALL AND FOURSQUARE HAD A BABY - Spikeball is a fun, active, easy-to-learn game that can be played anywhere by anyone. The Spikeball Standard Kit is all you need for a good time.
  • EASY TO LEARN FOR INSTANT FUN - Yard game experts and newcomers alike can pick up Spikeball quickly as it is easy to learn but difficult to master. Like volleyball, teams alternate possessions and try to spike the ball away from each other! Rule book included!
  • PLAY ANYWHERE - Spikeball is perfect for the backyard, the beach, the park, the gym, and even your living room (if you're careful enough).
  • ALL YOU NEED TO PLAY IS INCLUDED - The Standard Kit comes with the Spikeball set, one ball, netting, and a carrying bag for easy transport!
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02/08/2023 12:47 am GMT
GoSports Classic Cornhole Set
$79.99
  • COMPLETE CORNHOLE SET: Tailgate Size 3' x 2' Cornhole Boards with 8 All-Weather Bean Bags, Carrying Case and Rules
  • BEST VALUE: ‘Tailgate’ size cornhole set at an affordable price
  • EVENT DAY FAVORITE: Hours of fun with friends and family at parties, tailgates, holiday weekends, cookouts, campsites, and more
  • COMPACT CARRYING CASE: Boards easily fold flat into the premium carrying case for portability or neat storage
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02/08/2023 12:47 am GMT
CROSSNET Ultimate Bundle 4 Square Volleyball Net Set
$104.99 $89.99
  • Ultimate Bundle features both a singles net and a doubles net to accommodate up to 8 players per round
  • First ever fully adjustable, 4-way volleyball net, and the perfect game for all occasions
  • Featuring a unique, one of a kind design that is as intuitive as it is compact, setup and breakdown is a breeze
  • Little ones and adults alike will love CROSSNET! With everything included to modify your net’s height, combined with the game’s simple, easy-to-grasp rules and objectives
  • Comes complete with singles net (4 players), Doubles net (8 players), steel uprights, travel backpack, volleyball, pump, boundary lines, and rule book. 
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02/08/2023 12:57 am GMT

Shopping for these close to the holiday season can increase your chances of scoring a great deal!

Beyond-the-Backyard Gifts for teens

35. Inflatable Paddleboard or Kayak

Last year, my wife and I bought our first inflatable stand-up paddleboards (iSUPs). From that point on, we spent hours every weekend paddling up and down the Guadalupe River with the boys. An absolutely perfect way to spend a lazy Sunday as a family.

A tandem inflatable paddleboard (and a visit from a best friend) makes a great gifts for teens who love the outdoors.

Check out our posts on The Best Inflatable Paddle Boards and Best Tandem Kayaks to kick off your own family’s weekend adventures on the river, lake, or coast.

36. Scooter, Skateboard, Mountain Bike

While these three ideas are excellent for older kids as well as younger kids, I’m not quite qualified to make any recommendations … yet.

We live in the Texas Hill Country which, by default, means that our roads ascend and descend some beastly hills that make riding anything unmotorized around our “neighborhood” an exhausting chore.

That being said, I haven’t thoroughly researched or tested anything in this category; but, …

… it’s an idea worth mentioning … so, I mentioned it.

Techy Outdoor Gifts for Teens and Tweens

Outdoor gifts for teens do not have to exclude fun techy stuff. In fact, a few cool gifts come to mind.

37. All-Weather Portable Powerbank

Finally, you convince them to get outside only to see them, moments later, saunter back through the back door and disappear into their room. Hm …

You investigate.

As it turns out, their phone battery dwindled (oh, dear merciful God!!!) and, of course, they dare not go back outside and leave it unsupervised whilst plugged into the wall.

Insert eye roll.

A portable power bank means more hours listening to music or getting lost in an audiobook … OUTSIDE!

Powerbanks have a myriad of useful applications when camping, hiking, backpacking, or even as a means to keep them outside a bit longer.

Our post on the Best Portable Power Banks has tons of helpful ideas. Check it out!

38. E-Reader

Lightweight and compact e-readers like the Amazon Kindle make a great gift for teens who love to read. With an e-reader, they can keep up with the latest YA releases or download trail and park guides on the go.

All-New Kindle (2022 release)
$74.99
  • The lightest and most compact Kindle, now with a 300 ppi high-resolution display
  • Read comfortably with a glare-free, paper-like display. The adjustable front light and dark mode make reading effortless, day and night.
  • Get lost in your story. Tune out messages, emails, and social media with a distraction-free device specifically made for reading.
  • Now with extended battery life – A single charge via USB-C lasts up to 6 weeks.
  • Now with 16 GB to store thousands of books – Double the storage capacity of the previous generation.
  • Find new stories – With Kindle Unlimited, get unlimited access to over 2 million titles, thousands of audiobooks, and more.
  • Designed with sustainability in mind. This Kindle uses 30-75% recycled plastics, 90% recycled magnesium, and has 100% recyclable device packaging.
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02/08/2023 01:12 am GMT

Encouraging a lifestyle of reading is a critical. habit for little kids as well as older and younger teens. An e-reader provides boundless opportunity for them to explore and discover what fascinates them.

39. Amazon Audible Subscription

Maybe listening to books is more their gig. In that case, an Amazon Audible Premium Plus subscription gives them access to an endless library of audio literature read and narrated by professional voice actors and …well, narrators.

Outdoor Family HQ's Top Pick
Audible Premium Plus
$14.95 $0.00
  • Try Audible Premium Plus and Get Up to Two Free Audiobooks!
  • Audible is a membership service that provides customers with the world's largest selection of audiobooks as well as podcasts, exclusive originals and more.
  • Your Audible membership is free for 30 days. If you enjoy your Audible trial, do nothing and your membership will automatically continue. We'll send you an email reminder before your trial ends.
  • Download the free Audible app to start listening on your iOS or Android device. You can also listen on any Alexa-enabled device, compatible Fire tablets, Kindles, Sonos devices and more.
  • You can cancel anytime before your trial ends and you won’t be charged. There are no commitments and no cancellation fees.
Get Your Free 30-Day Trial on Amazon
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02/08/2023 09:52 am GMT

Audible not only makes countless titles accessible for a great price, they also provide monthly credits to download free books.

Woo-hoo! Free gifts! Let’s go!

40. Activity and Fitness Tracker

For kids who are more intentionally active with their outdoor activity, a fitness tracker, like the Fitbit Inspire 2, is a way to keep them motivated and competing with themselves.

Fitbit Inspire 2 Health and Fitness tracker
  • Includes free 1-year Fitbit Premium trial for step-by-step fitness and nutrition programs, personalized insights, motivation and sleep tools
  • 24/7 heart rate precisely tracks calorie burn, resting heart rate and heart rate zones
  • Enjoy up to 10 days of battery for daily progress without constant charging
  • Track all-day activity including your steps, distance, hourly activity and calories burned
  • Choose from 20+ exercise modes to get real-time stats during your workouts—or let SmartTrack® automatically recognize and record your exercises
  • Earn Active Zone Minutes as you progress toward your weekly 150 min. of heart-pumping activity
  • Track your time in light, deep and REM sleep, then get a Sleep Score to better understand your sleep quality each night
  • Water-resistant to 50 meters, so you can wear it in the shower, pool and beyond—plus, it automatically tracks how long you've been swimming
  • Stay motivated by connecting with friends, competing in challenges, earning badges and celebrating goal milestones
Available Now on REI Co-op
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41. Bluetooth Earbuds

Those audiobooks can be much more immersive with a quality pair of earbuds. Also, scientific research has shown that listening to your favorite jams makes exercising outdoors 1,000,000% better.

What research do you ask?

Mine. Yesterday. It sucked 1,000,000% less with bumpin’ tunes.

As a professional penny-miser, I have searched far and wide for a solid pair of immersive-sounding wireless ear buds that don’t break the bank. My findings?

Apple AirPods (3rd Generation) Wireless Earbuds
  • Personalized Spatial Audio with dynamic head tracking places sound all around you
  • Single fit
  • Force sensor lets you control your entertainment and answer or end calls
  • Lightning Charging Case or MagSafe Charging Case
  • Up to 6 hours of listening time
  • Up to 30 hours total listening time
  • Quick access to Siri by saying “Hey Siri”
  • Easy setup, in-ear detection, and automatic switching between devices
  • Audio Sharing between two sets of AirPods
Available Now on Amazon
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You get what you pay for.

I swear by my Apple Air Pods. They’ve even taken two trips through the wash and still work like new!

42. Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker

My 13-year-old son Luke takes his BOSE SoundLink Micro Bluetooth Speaker outside with him every time he practices baseball in our backyard.

This thing sounds amazing (relative to it’s size and price), can take whatever weather you chuck at it, and it can mount to the handlebars of his bike so he can jam down the road (much safer than wearing earbuds …).

43. Smartphone Camera Lens Kit

Whether hiking, backpacking, or exploring their own backyard jungle, tweens and teens love to document their experiences and share them through social media.

What better way to influence other kids to GET OUTSIDE!

The Xenvo Pro Lens Kit for iPhone and Android give that capable camera phone a professional boost.

Xenvo Pro Macro/Wide Angle Lens Kit for iPhone and Android
$39.99
  • Compatible with all smartphones, laptops, and tablets
  • Includes TruView 0.45x Wide Angle Lens, Clarus 15x Macro Lens, TruGrip Lens Clip, GlowClip Mini Rechargeable LED Light + Charging Cable, Quick-Release Lanyard, DuraCase, EasyClip, and Cleaning Cloth
  • Eliminates dark corners, minimizes ghosting, lens flare, and other common issues
  • Lifetime Warranty
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02/08/2023 02:07 am GMT

Get them something that turns that simple camera phone into something with a lot more AWESOME!

44. Flexible Tripod for Digital Cameras and Smartphones

On the same note as the lens kit, a tripod for their digital camera or camera phone expands their photography and video-taking capabilities.

Ailun Flexible Tripod for Digital Cameras and Smartphones
$11.89 $9.89
  • Wide Compatibility: The phone holder's spring-loaded mechanism makes it easily retractable to adjusts to most phone sizes (width between 55mm - 85mm)
  • Durable and Secure: The updated tripod has a high quality metal ball joint and screw, longer and tightener pin along with improved legs and a upgraded phone holder
  • Multi-Angle Shots: 360 degree ball joint allows adjustment for multi-angle shots, and flexible tripod legs can get a level shot on an uneven surface, or wrap it on a pole, tree etc. to capture awesome shots.
  • Compact Design:Its lightweight design and easy portability mean that you can put it in your pocket or your briefcase and take it everywhere you go. And you will be ready for the perfect picture at any time.
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02/08/2023 02:12 am GMT

A tripod steadies their shot, keeps the camera in place while they move around, and allows them to capture videos with much better sound quality than just hand-held.

45. Metal Detector

One time, my son Jack found an old corroded quarter somewhere in the back half of our property.

This led him to the conclusion that there must be a massive cache of pirate booty buried somewhere back there and, thus, the great excavation of our property began … one plastic shovel full at a time.

Heather and I bought him a metal detector and one evening, to our astonishment, he came back lugging a bucketful of loot …

Fisher F22 Weatherproof Deep Seeking Metal Detector
$299.00 $229.00
  • Weatherproof metal detector that can detect Jewelry, Coins, and Artifacts on land and shallow water up to nine inches deep
  • This metal detector is weatherproof for use in the harshest weather and environments
  • A metal detector made for adults but easy enough for a child to operate
  • Distinguishes between valuable targets and unwanted metals. Quickly identify all types of buried targets by Target Categories and a 0-99 numeric Target-ID, enhanced with a 4-Tone Audio-ID System.
  • This well-balanced weatherproof metal detector weighs approximately 2 pounds and has a padded hand grip and arm cup for comfortable treasure hunting.
Available Now on Amazon
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02/08/2023 02:17 am GMT

… rusty nails, beer caps, old bolts, half a saw blade, barbed wire … a horsehoe from a bygone era.

He was so immensely proud. Next time, I was out there with him. Strangely addicting.

46. Nintendo Switch

I know, I know! You’re thinkin’: I thought this was an outdoor family site! What hypocrisy! What nerve! What heinous atrocity is this that you would recommend a gaming system?!?!?

First, it’s worse than you think. I LOVE video games.

Nintendo Switch™
$299.99
  • 7" OLED screen with HDMI-to-TV connect-ability
  • 4.5-9 hours battery life
  • 64GB Internal Storage
  • Three Gaming Modes: Handheld, Tabletop, and TV
  • Includes JoyCon controllers
  • Over 5,000 compatible games
  • Supports numerous streaming apps like, HULU, YouTube, Twitch, and many more
  • Supports single and multiplayer, same room or online
  • Parental controls for monitoring and guiding content access
Available Now on Amazon
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02/08/2023 02:33 am GMT

I also love the outdoors. Don’t faint.

Our children are natives to a tech-centric world and forcing the stigma that being outdoorsy and being a gamer is mutually exclusive of each other is, well, NOT TRUE.

I’m living proof.

A Nintendo Switch enables friends and siblings to engage each other in competitive game play anywhere, even outdoors. What a great idea!

Warning: If you get them a Switch, be sure NOT to join them in a SmashBros match. You might find yourself corrupted and drawn to the dark side.

Insert another eye roll.

That’s a Wrap!

Whether they’re already inclined to spend time outside or you’re trying to find ways to motivate them, buying them the right gift can be an effective way to further their enjoyment of the outdoors.

For birthday, Christmas morning, or for a congratulations-you’re-old-enough-to-have-one-now gift, any of these adventure gifts are sure to result in an ear-to-ear grin!

We hope this list will help you find that perfect outdoor gift you’re looking for! Until next time, happy trails!

Now, get (them) out there!

Joshua Davis

Being outdoors is freedom! Being outdoors with my wife and two boys is LIVING! Whether in my backyard or getting lost in a National Park, there’s nothing I’d rather do than explore, discover, and experience the paradise that surrounds us. Give me my family, a backpack, and a trail and my life is full!