Gift Guide: Practical Gifts Every Hiker and Outdoor Enthusiast Will Need

By Rosunnara Roth
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Photo Courtesy: Thomas Barwick/DigitalVision/Getty Images

If you’re facing an uphill battle figuring out what to give your friend who loves to hike every weekend, don't sweat it. We’ve scouted for items and done the hard work for you. Whether you want to make sure they don't get lost or give them the right tools to start a fire anywhere in the wilderness, these unbelievable items are sure to be valuable additions to their outdoor gear collections.

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Travel Light and Communicate Smart Using a Mini GPS with Built-In Bluetooth

Are you worried that your friend could get lost in the wilderness one day? If you’re ready to drop some serious dollars, give them the Garmin InReach Mini GPS with Built-In Bluetooth to ease your mind. Roughly the size of a palm, this mini GPS allows off-the-grid explorers to communicate with others through text messages.

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Photo Courtesy: Garmin

If someone triggers an SOS alert, the GEOS 24/7 emergency team will answer and track their route to rescue them. The wearable device also allows people to connect with family and friends from anywhere, even without cell phone service. Getting lost for days in the wilderness won't happen with this GPS, and you can regularly check-in with your buddy. The small, portable size makes it easy to take on every trip.

A Super Strong Trowel to Leave No Trace

The TentLab Ultralight Trowel deserves a standing ovation for holding up nicely when people need to dig their own bathroom in the great outdoors. Sometimes, a site won't have public restrooms, so your hiking buddy won't have a choice but to use a trowel to find some relief. This trowel is known to be solid and effective, important features to avoid snapping it in half in the middle of the mission.

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Photo Courtesy: Tentlab; Sports Recreation Mall

No one wants to carry a heavy bag while hitting the trail, so it's also great that this trowel is lightweight and very portable. Hikers can throw it in their bag and be good to go. Your recipient will appreciate that you don't want them to have a "crappy" time in the wild.

An LED Headlamp for Lit Adventures

It’s a bright idea to gift any hiker or outdoor enthusiast with a headlamp. Have you ever been spooked by a mysterious figure or accidentally collided with a tree branch in the dark? It’s not fun. A headlamp will help your outdoorsy friend feel prepared and safe when trips take longer than expected.

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Photo Courtesy: Home Depot

The Lumen Dual Color LED Headlamp brilliantly beams in three different modes: high, medium and light. It's impact and weather-resistant, so it's basically unbreakable. If your recipient is spending the night outdoors, this device can light the path during those late trips to the restroom or the car. Their hands will also remain free for any necessary tasks.

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An Unbeatable Hand Warmer to Feel Toasty

When the cold won’t leave, the Zippo 12-Hour Hand Warmer can keep your hiker friend warm and cozy during their trip. It creates a flameless heat wherever it’s needed, so they won’t have to worry about their hands or feet freezing in the woods. Best of all, the portable mini furnace can be used over and over again.

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Photo Courtesy: REI/YouTube

This hand warmer doesn't sacrifice warming power for portability, as it offers 2.5 times more heat than disposable heat packs and produces no waste. It wouldn’t be surprising if your friend told their old gloves to take a hike the moment they put this in their hands.

A SteriPEN for Those Questionable Water Sites

When the water at the campsite seems fishy, a water filtration system is a must. Meet the SteriPEN UV Water Purifier. This lightweight water filtration device quickly destroys almost 100% of harmful microorganisms, such as Giardia, bacteria, viruses and protozoa.

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Photo courtesy: Shop.com

Designed for outdoor purposes, the SteriPEN works like a charm if your recipient needs to use it multiple times a day. It can actually be reused for up to a whopping 8,000 liters. Plus, its water sensor can be utilized as a flashlight. This life-saving device is very useful if your nature-loving pal runs out of clean water or faces an emergency on a long trail.

Tackle Poor Weather and Emergencies with a Fire Starter

A fire starter comes in handy in more ways than you can imagine. Besides making a fire for s’mores, an outdoor enthusiast may need to light a fire to keep warm in rain, hail or snow. Candles and matches might not work in bad weather, so Gerber Fire Starter is the best option to ensure your recipient doesn’t have to worry about it getting wet.

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Photo Courtesy: Gerber

The water-resistant starter is compact and easily attaches to a backpack, keychain or lanyard, so packing it won’t be a problem. It’s the ideal gadget for emergencies, thanks to the 100 dB whistle built into the product. This fire starter will put matches to absolute shame.

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A Reusable Silicone Food Storage Bag Set to Leave No (Plastic) Waste

Say goodbye zippered bags and hello to reusable bags. If your friend loves taking food and snacks with them on their adventures, treat them to this set of Reusable FDA Approved Silicone Food Storage Bags. The bags zip tightly to keep food fresh and delicious.

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Photo Courtesy: Houzz.com

It's good for the environment and your friend's wallet, because they won't spend any more money on plastic bags that they usually throw away. Color dyes, BPA, BPS, BPF, plastic and latex? Not these baggies. They are a healthy replacement for plastic storage. After all, your giftee is a lover of nature.