I love getting things in my stocking that I can use on all of my outdoor adventures including hiking, backpacking, and camping. When I start my Christmas shopping, I see so many little gifts for stockings that really aren’t useful or are really cheap and don’t last long. For myself and my family, I like to get things we can use that are versatile for our outdoor needs, either in the woods or on the river. This year, I have put together the ultimate list for stocking stuffers and gifts for the outdoorsy person in your life. Many of these are great and handy for people who travel too! Here are some of the best outdoorsy gifts that are practical and useful.
Stocking Stuffers Under $20.00
The holidays are perfect for restocking what we have used throughout the year. It is also a good time to add some of the smaller gear and gadgets to our camping and backpacking packs. Stocking stuffers should be small, affordable, and practical. Most items here are under $20.00 and any outdoorsy person would appreciate any of these items. Some of these stocking stuffers are under $10.00.
Carabiners– I love carabiners. They have so many purposes, especially if you are backpacking or camping. You can use them to attach things to your pack and to hang things like a Hammock or a clothesline. They really are a very useful gadget. I have even used the tiny ones for anchors for paracord when I needed to tie something down and didn’t have a Bungie. Carabiners come in all sizes. I prefer ones that don’t just clip.
Smelly Proof Bags – These are a fantastic gift for anyone who spends any time in the outdoors. They come in all sizes and are clear, white, or black. If you are a follower of leave no trace principals then you are aware of deterring animals from your camping or hiking site or disposing properly of waste. That is why I love their black bags and the clear ones are fantastic for any type of food storage, especially to store food inside a bear bag. Because they are reusable and durable, this is the only bag I use for camping.
NoSweat Hat Liners – If you ear a hat or helmet while being outdoors, NoSweat hat liners will eliminate sweat from dripping into your eyes and also ruining your heat. You can check out our review here for the NoSweat hat liners.
Pocket Knife – This is the perfect gift for anyone who likes any outdoor activity. It is one of the first gear items that our kids get, besides a backpack. I really love my Opinel. It stays sharp for a long time, is easy to sharpen, and looks beautiful.
Socks– My current favorite sock is Swiftwick. They have socks for active men and women, and for all types of athletics, sports, and outdoor adventures. I don’t talk about this often, but my feet are awful! I have very large, sweaty feet and it’s hard to find a sock that fits and also takes good care of my feet. (I’m a size eleven) I wear men’s socks most of the time, but it has been amazing to find a sock that suits all of my outdoor needs, that fits, keeps my feet from being cold and wet, and looks cute. Swiftwick also has socks for all weather. I personally love the Vision and the Pursuit currently. I not only love the fit and the feel, but I also love the compression and built-in support. Swiftwick socks come in many styles and colors and for men and women.
Survival Grenade – It doesn’t hurt to be prepared. With so many more people getting out this year more than ever, there are even more people getting hurt or lost. My dad is truly an eagle scout, so every Christmas he sends us new things to add to our emergency kits. About ten years ago, he put together a basic emergency kit for camping and our cars, and there have been a few times that it has been very valuable and useful. Last year, he sent us Survival Grenades, a small kit that has everything in it to start a fire and fish, and includes a small knife and para cord. I can imagine if you can build a fire and shelter and find food, you would be able to survive while lost.
Silicone Bowl– A silicone pill cup, makes the best hiking or backpacking bowl or cup. Lightweight and compact, it’s perfect for any outdoor adventure. My sister introduced these to me on our last backpacking trip and I love them. A lot of people use the silicone pill cups because they are deeper, but I love these ones because you can clip them to your pack with a carabiner. It’s taking repurposing to a different level. Or, use them for their original purpose for your canine hiking buddy.
Morsel Spork– Sporks are great for eating when hiking or backpacking. But what is even better, is the Morsel Spork, which also has a spatula edge. This is the perfect multi-purpose utensil when backpacking or camping.
Stargazers Reference Guide– Watching the night sky in the middle of nowhere is one of my favorite things to do. In the back country, there is no pollution, so I can easily see the Milky Way and the constellations year round. This pocket guide is a neat tool to have on starry nights to quickly find your favorites constellations. Plus, the stars in it glow in the dark in this handy guide for easier use as night!
Night Sky Playing Cards – Playing cards are always a fun item to take on any camping trip. These playing cards have all of the constellations and each suit represents the best season for viewing them.
PATCH band-aids– These have become my favorite band-aid. Not only are they made from organic bamboo, but the kid’s band-aid has cute little pandas all over it. These are super soft and do not hurt when you take them off. The band-aids come in four “flavors”: kids with coconut oil, activated charcoal, aloe vera and natural for any type of cut, bruise, burn or scrape. Because they are already treated, no more messy tubes and bottles.
First Aid Kit– This little first aid kit is perfect for any hiker or backpacker. It has all the basics that you need and it can attach to your pick for easy access with a carabiner.
Portable Clothesline– Camping with little kids can be rough because they are tough on clothes. Puddle jumping, falling in the creek, and spilling cocoa are just a few mishaps that we have had that I have had to change the kids’ clothes. When you don’t have a washer available. You can easily wash and hang clothes from para cord or this nifty clothesline. This clothesline is awesome because it has clips attached.
Laundry Detergent– What a lifesaver if you have to wash clothes and you’re in the middle of nowhere. Kids and adults have messy accidents and it’s not like you carry your whole closet with you. This is the perfect travel detergent for anyplace and anytime. Did I mention it’s travel size, follows the leave-no-trace guidelines with no suds and is TSA compliant?
Fire Starter Kit– Fire is important when you are camping or in the back country. Not only it is important for warmth or light, but it may also be your cooking tool or even a safety tool. This little kit from UCO is awesome and keeps everything in one place.
Backpacking Spice Kit– I don’t like bland food. When we go car camping or in the RV, I can pack as many spices as I want. But when I am backpacking or hiking, I don’t want to have to carry the extra weight. I have one of these, and I use it for black pepper, garlic, and my favorite seasoning salt. My husband carries garlic, cayenne, and lemon pepper.
Compass– A compass should be something that everyone should learn how to use and should take with them on any adventure. As a safety item, it is at the top of my list. I do not want to get lost in the woods. A map can only get you so far sometimes. And what happens when your GPS stops working?
Mini Speaker– The one thing I enjoy more than watching the stars in the mountains, is watching the stars while being serenaded. This little speaker is perfect if you want a little music, and we have used ours to stargaze and listen to The Piano Guys or Lindsey Sterling.
Backpacking Soap– Not only is this light-weight and portable for hiking and backpacking but because there is no mess, it is also great to carry in your purse for every-day and also travel. No more mess. Soap paper is one of the things my husband introduced me to when I started backpacking with him. It’s a lifesaver, and everyone should have some, especially moms.
Face Mask– Being outdoors for the majority of my life, I have to really take good care of my skin. One of the things I do is using a face mask every couple of weeks. My current favorite is 7th Heaven, a division of the UK-based company Montagne Jeunesse, which has natural face masks. I got to try recently three “flavors” of the peel-off mask: the Dead Sea, Tea Tree, and Coconut Clay. My face is so soft!!! You can buy these online, at Walmart, Walgreens, and many grocery stores. **Thanks 7th Heaven for kindly sending these to us as a courtesy to try.
Pee Cloth– For all you ladies out there, every year companies are creating new and practical items for women, to make it easier for them in the back country. One of these innovative items is the pee cloth by Kula. If there is one thing you buy for a woman who loves to camp, hike, or be active in the outdoors, this is the item. With it’s scientifically proven design, you have less mess, less waste, and really cool gear. It’s odorless, easy to clean, and easily hooks to your bag or can be neatly folded. Did I mention it’s reflective and easy to find in the dark? I found this review on Garage Grown Gear to be very useful.
Hiking Journal– Journaling is such a great way to self-reflect as well as document your adventures. This cute travel-sized one is perfect for hikers and backpackers alike. I love to journal and write while sitting on top of mountains or looking out over lakes.
NoSo Patches- These awesome patches are perfect for repairing gear and coats. My favorite puffy coat got ripped one year and I was s0 devastated. However thanks to NoSo, I can easily repair much of my outdoor gear like sleeping bags, tents, backpacks, ski pants and jackets. NoSo has lots of different colors and pre-cut shapes and is easy to use so you can repair your own gear.
Gear Aid Tenacious Tape – Tenacious tape is a good way to fix any of your outdoor gear, including sleeping bags, coats, packs and tents. I usually keep a roll in our camping box.
Ear Buds – I love to listen to music while hiking or gazing at the stars. Have you ever listened to Lindsey Sterling on a lake at night, with just the stars for light? It is pretty amazing. I needed some Blue-ray compatible ear buds, that had long battery life, were affordable and durable. I love my SoundPEATS for being outside.
Gift Card– What about a gift card? Some people are very particular about their gear and what better than getting them a gift card towards the purchase of that one piece of gear they really want? Amazon, REI, Cabellas, Garage Grown Gear, and Sportsman’s Warehouse are awesome picks for outdoor lovers.
Tooth Powder– No more mess! A little goes a long way, so when you have to keep weight in mind, this is what you want. It’s all-natural with no nasty chemicals and easy to throw in your bag. I sure like convenience.
Handwarmers– Whether you are camping in the summer or enjoying winter sports, hand warmers can really come in handy. As a family, we use these all year long and make life so much better when it is cold.
Paracord- This is one of the most versatile items that anyone who loves being outdoors should have. You can use it to tie stuff down, tie things together, or hang things. I’ve used paracord to make a raft, hang a bear bag and make a clothesline.
Collapsible Water Bottle– What an innovative piece of gear! Perfect for travel, every day and outdoor life. This collapsible water bottle easily stores away in your pack or even your purse. You can even attach it to your backpack.
Buff– I love buffs. They are awesome as a headband, bandana, face mask and more. No wonder they wear buffs on Survivor. These are an awesome piece of gear for the outdoors.
MontYBoca Trail Meals Cookbook– If you are someone you know is sick and tired of eating freeze-dried meals, chili or hotdogs, then this is the perfect gift for them. It is not impossible for people to eat well when traveling or outdoors. I have tried several of these recipes and they are a game-changer for eating delicious food in the back country or camping. It’s small size is perfect for any backpock. If you want to learn more about MontYBoca, you can go to their website, or check out these recipes that I tried for my blog: Beef Jerky Stew, Dirt Bag Egg Benedict, Caramelized Bananas and Garlic Chicken with Artichokes and Mashed Potatoes.
Powdered Cocktail Mixes– I don’t drink often, but it is pretty epic to end a hard day on the trail with a nice mixed drink. One of these days, someone will come up with a way to make ice instantly.
Moleskin– This is perfect for hot spots, and blisters when you are hiking, backpacking or trekking. You should always take good care of your feet.
Signal Whistle– You never know when this will come in handy. I do not think anyone can be over-prepared for an emergency when outdoors. I have heard several stories from people, that having a whistle saved their lives. One year, my daughter used hers to whistle back and forth with a marmot.
First Aid Kit – For any adventure, you should have a first aid kit. I have a really big one for camping that unfortunately gets used often. The smaller first aid kits I like to carry for backpacking and day hiking.
For other great stocking stuffers and gift ideas for outdoorsy people, my hiking gift guide has a large selection of hiking and camping essentials.
These are all great items that any outdoorsy person would love. For more ideas, you can check out the 2019 gear finds or 2019 outdoorsy kids’ gift guide. One of our most popular and useful posts for gifts is the Gift Guide for Outdoorsy Men. What is something on this list that you would love? With the right gear and items, you can be outside with no limits.