Good news campers, we’ve picked the best gear we got to review this spring so you know what to buy for your next camping trip. Gear has to be practical and lightweight as our crew ventures deep into the backwoods.
Editor’s pick: Zpacks Poncho
I like this one because it was extremely practical. It acts as a rain poncho while hiking or canoeing and as a tarp once we set up camp. I used it as a ground sheet too and it worked really well in every scenario. It was vented so I didn’t sweat too much when wearing it in a storm.
You need to take some time to fold it properly, but when you do it takes up very little space in your bag and it’s lightweight too. I used it extensively and it hasn’t ripped or gotten any holes in it.
GearBest Inflatable Pillow
Purists will scoff at the idea of a pillow as a waste of space, but I have never found my rolled up clothing to be a comfortable substitute. Personally, I don’t go anywhere without this guy. It comes in at only 0.221 kg so its great for long trips. It self-inflates and you can just press down on it to let the air out. But really, the only thing that matters is that it is super comfortable! You can get it wet, in fact, I like to take it for a swim with me so I can float around with it. It comes in at under $7 and its worth every penny for the way it improves your sleep.
The Z Pack is my sleeping bag of choice for a number of reasons, but the most important one is that I am always as snug as a bug. I first got the Solo Quilt to deal with the Canadian winters. It’s damn cold here and I feel like I always have cold feet when I am out in the winter. This puppy let me go backwoods camping through fall and most of winter without a cold piggy in sight. It’s light enough for most fall camps, but I love it because it folds up super small so I have more space for food!
Big Agnes Insulate Air Core Sleeping Pad
When it comes to general quality and eco-friendly design, Big Agnes = epic badassery. This pad packs up light and tight and sports 3.25″ of comfort with PrimaLoft™ synthetic insulation that keeps you warm. It’s durable, lightweight 70D nylon diamond rip-stop top and bottom and comes with a repair kit. Honestly the very best rest I have ever enjoyed while camping.
OK this is the bomb diggity, the Rolls Royce of camping chairs. I have always considered camping chairs somewhat unnecessary and far too heavy addition to my camping gear repertoire until now. The Helinox Chair One folds up super small and the aluminium frame makes it light to carry. Its comfortable, able to hold 320 lbs and a now essential part of every camping trip.
We have tested this twice, and on both occasions, fellow campers offered to buy it from me. Not a chance – get your own! Here are the stats:
- Weighs a paltry 1.9 lbs and rolls up smaller than your Sunday paper
- Anodized DAC aluminum poles
- Supports up to 320 lbs.
See more review at The Travel Gears.
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