If you’ve never hiked or you’re just not familiar with hiking accessories and gear, start with REI. Simply put, hikers know REI gifts rock. And if you’re shopping for a hiker or anyone who loves outdoor activities, you’ll love how easy they make it to find everything you need.
Let’s start with some essentials before getting to some more creative, out-of-the-box gift ideas.
1. First Aid Kit
Nothing ruins a day on the trail quicker than an injury. Hopefully, the hiker on your list never has to open this First Aid Kit. But should something happen, they’ll be prepared with the basics.
The kit was put together specifically for people heading to the outdoors, be it forests, mountains, or both. It comes with bandages to stop bleeding, sting and blister relief, ice packs, medicine for pain and allergic reactions, and more all in a clearly labeled kit weighing less than 1/2 a pound. It’s an absolute hiking must.
Luckily, I’ve only ever needed my Headlamp when I’ve actually planned to hike after dark or camp out overnight. Its bright light comes in handy and the red night vision worked great while volunteering at a baby turtle rescue where night beach patrols were part of the job.
Either way, though, it always has a place in my bag. Anything can happen to cause a delay in getting back to the trailhead. This headlamp provides peace of mind for any hiker who needs to find their way back in the dark. It’s one of the best gifts for outdoor lovers because it’s useful and offers some safety when the trail isn’t as well-lit as needed.
3. CrazyCap by Waatr
Help the hiker on your list stay hydrated with CLEAN water! CrazyCap is a 100% rechargeable UV LED water purifier spotlighted by TIME Magazine as a Top 100 invention of 2020.
You can attach it to most reusable water bottles or gift a CrazyCap with one of their CrazyCap water bottles as a complete set. Simply fill the bottle with water and activate CrazyCap to kills viruses, bacteria, and microorganisms, and remove mercury.
Not only are plastic bottles bad for the Earth but they also heat up with the outside temperature for a completely UNrefreshing way to quench thirst on the trail. For hikers who plan to camp or do multi-day treks, CrazyCap solves the problem of needing to carry days-worth of water in your pack.
If you’re looking for a gift for the outdoor enthusiast on your list that combines usefulness, innovation, and uniqueness, look no further than CrazyCap!
4. Anker PowerCore Portable Charger
Without a doubt, this Portable Charger is one of the best gifts for hikers. It’s powerful, has 3 USB ports, and can last for a multi-day hike without needing to be recharged. The USB ports can also power strings of lights and portable speakers.
The 2 micro-USB ports also work for charging camera batteries like those in the Sony a6000. While camping out in the Okavango Delta with no facilities, this allowed my camera and phone to stay charged and ready to snap as many wildlife photos as I wanted.
5. REI Co-op Ruckpack 28
If this was a list of gifts for backpackers, a larger capacity bag would be in order. But for those hikers who want a versatile backpack that can serve as a daypack plus, as well as a backpack for city sightseeing, the REI Co-op Ruckpack 28 answers the call.
It has comfortable shoulder straps, plenty of nooks and crannies large and small, as well as an interior pouch that can serve as a hydration reservoir compartment or a place to store a laptop. There’s even an included rain cover to keep hiking gear and other essentials dry.
6. Black Diamond Trekking Poles
Anyone who’s hiked can vouch for the knee and lower leg strain that comes with trekking downhill. Trekking Poles are the best way to distribute the effort and reduce the work knees do to get hikers safely back to level ground.
These are light, adjustable, sturdy, and can be used to hike in any season. Day hikers and multi-day backcountry trekkers of all ages will appreciate strapping this hiking gift to their outdoor packs. These are easily one of the best outdoor gifts for men and women.
7. Swiss Army Knife
A Swiss Army Knife is one of the most timeless outdoor gear gifts because it’s just so useful! This handy blade also comes with a screwdriver, tweezers, scissors, a nail file, and even (wait for it!), a toothpick!
Clip it to a key ring or backpack ring for safekeeping. Then, let the hiker on your list discover ALL the many ways this little tool will come in handy on the trail!
8. Kahtoola Microspikes
Let’s just say, I really wish Santa had left a pair of these under the tree for me last year! They would have been put to good use while hiking at Rocky Mountain National Park this fall. An early snowstorm melted away quickly but the ice on the trail at higher elevations was a challenge in just hiking boots. But, these Kahtoola Microspikes slip on easily over shoes or boots for rock-solid traction in icy conditions.
Beyond their function, what makes this a great gift for people who like to hike is how small they are! They can fit inside a pocket or a small backpack compartment ready if and when the conditions get slippery.
Unique Hiking Gifts
How about a few gifts for outdoor enthusiasts that are unexpected or something they might not buy for themselves? These gift ideas include a mix of experiences, preparedness, and perhaps even a surprise!
9. National Park Pass
You may not know where they want to hike but you can make sure the cost of entry is on you. The America the Beautiful National Parks Pass is a unique and cool gift for hikers because it’s valid for an entire year and allows up to 4 adults in the same car (Kids 15 & under are free.) to enter all the National Parks, National Forests, and other areas protected by the National Parks System.
From National Park family road trips to a group of friends looking for a few days in the backcountry, this gift may look small all wrapped up but is actually a gateway into the vast natural beauty of the United States.
10. Moon National Park Guide
Along with the park pass, this National Park’s Guide gives a detailed look at each park that’s guaranteed to ignite some serious outdoor wanderlust. The book comes with itineraries and in-depth hike descriptions, along with maps, essential info, and at-a-glance sections for ideas and top experiences.
This Moon USA National Parks book isn’t your average guidebook. I take it on all my own National Park adventures and still drool over the incredible color photos. Plus, the National Parks stamps area at the start of each regional chapter turns the book into a souvenir of which parks have been visited.
11. Food Dehydrator
I’m going to bet you never thought a list of gift ideas for hikers would include a Food Dehydrator! Outdoor lovers know, however, that having snacks on the trail is a must. And, it doesn’t get healthier than snacks prepared at home with fresh ingredients.
Food Dehydrators dry fruits, veggies, and meat (for jerky) in just a few hours. These dehydrated snacks can last for a long time and hold up to 90% of the original nutritional value naturally found in the food source. Rich in flavor and protein, hikers will love packing their own homemade snacks for the trail.
12. Sol Emergency Bivy
No one ever thinks they’ll have any problems on the hiking trail until it happens to them. Unique gifts for outdoor lovers can certainly include an item someone may not think of for themselves. The Sol Thermal Bivy is all about being prepared should a hiker unexpectedly have to spend the night outside.
This super lightweight body sack is designed to trap and reflect a person’s body heat towards them to keep warm overnight. The material also protects against elements like wind and rain. But best of all, it weighs just 3.8 ounces and rolls up into its 3″ stuff sack for one of the all-around best outdoor gifts you can buy.
13. UBeesize Tripod
A small tripod with bendy legs is just the right camera accessory to have on the hiking trail. It’s lightweight and can easily fit into a backpack side pocket. Wrap it around a tree branch or railing to take hands-free photos with the click of a button. Or position it as a traditional tripod when the trail is even enough to allow for balance.
Whether the outdoor enthusiast on your list has an iPhone, an Android phone, a camera, or a GoPro, they can securely attach it to the tripod to capture creative shots and videos of their adventure.
Hiking Gifts for Her
Shopping for gifts for outdoorsy women? Along with the right hiking gear and accessories, hiking clothes are designed for performance in all kinds of weather. The items below are always on my hiking trip packing list.
- 14. Hiking Boots: These favorites of mine have gone on every hiking trip from Patagonia to the Grand Canyon for the last 4 years and counting. They’re comfortable, have a solid grip, and are incredibly durable.
- 15. Hiking Pants: Convertible pants are great for multiple seasons or when trail conditions warm up or cool off unexpectedly. I have these a couple of colors and use them year after year.
- 16. DU/ER Performance Jeans & DU/ER No Sweat Everyday Pants: Both of these pants prove outdoor gifts for women don’t have to look frumpy or have one purpose. I’ve added these to my hiking and travel wardrobe because they’re designed to stretch for active performance and wick moisture away. The best part is their versatility. I can wear them for city sightseeing and hiking, which makes my travel bag a lot lighter on trips where I’ll be doing both.
- 17. Fleece Jacket: This is one of the best gifts for the outdoorsy girl in your life! I’ve worn mine on the trail as a jacket, as well as layered them with puffy vests and winter gear for snowshoeing and skiing.
- 18. Torrentshell Rain Jacket: Two things can ruin a good hike, getting soaked from the rain and carrying around a bulky jacket…just in case it rains. This handy Patagonia shell jacket solves both of these problems. It’s waterproof, breathable, stuffs into its own pocket, and clips to a backpack.
Gifts for an Outdoorsy Guy
Clothing hiking gifts for men are all about performance combined with sweat and body heat regulation. The hiker on your list will appreciate gear that can be as flexible and rugged as he needs it to be.
- 19. Hiking Boots: One of the best hiking gifts for men, these outdoor boots have all-terrain traction that’ll keep his feet warm and dry in any condition.
- 20. Hiking Pants: Convertible pants are a must for guys who love to hike. My hubby gets warmer (and sweatier) than I do even in cooler temperatures. Having the option to quickly unzip the pant legs into shorts helps him stay comfortable no matter what the weather is.
- 21. DU/ER Performance Jeans: Clothing hiking gifts for him aren’t only about looking the outdoorsy part. My hubby l-o-v-e-s these jeans for their comfort stretch and their ability to regulate his temperature. He’s always hot…but not in these jeans. And they look great if your guy needs to transition to a casual dinner out.
- 22. Fleece Jacket: Whether on the trail, ski slope, or just by the fire after a day spent outdoors, these fleeces are warm, versatile, and cozy for layering or to wear on its own. My hubby has one in black and shh…I’m eyeing another one for Christmas!
- 23. Patagonia’s Nano-Air Vest: This vest is perfect for those chilly temperatures in early spring and late fall. It knows how to insulate for warmth without the added bulkiness of a typical puffy vest and also breathes when the trail inclines get the heart pumping. It’s a great versatile piece for hiking and other active outdoor activities.
Gifts for Outdoorsy Couples
The couple that plays together, stays together! And hiking with a special someone sure is a great way to leave the distractions of technology and life behind to reconnect in nature. Of course, these ideas about gifts for hiking couples can also make great hiking gifts for women or men on their own. I’m just biased because I think it’s a ton of fun to enjoy the outdoors with my guy!
24. Eno DoubleNest Hammock
This lightweight hammock for two just requires 2 trees and the urge to relax. Its strong fabric is capable of holding 2 adults who’d like to laze away some time staring at the view.
Despite its strength and capacity, this powerhouse hammock weighs just a pound and packs down into its stuff sack to the size of a softball. For hikers managing their pack’s weight, the usefulness and portability of this hammock make it a no-brainer to have around for whenever the time is right to kick back and unwind.
25. REI Co-op Half Dome 3 Plus Tent
If the plan is to hike into the backcountry and camp out together, this REI Half Dome Tent has enough space for couples, their gear, and even a fur baby who loves to hike. This tent is one of the best gifts for hikers and campers.
Hiking couples will love how REI combined function with a bit of outdoor romance. In addition to being spacious, this tent protects against the wind and rain with its side and end coverings. But, when the night is clear, the mesh on top can be uncovered to reveal a starry night sky for cozy side-by-side viewing with that special someone.
26. Marmot Trestles 30 Sleeping Bag
Why a Sleeping Bag for 1 in a section all about couples who love to hike and enjoy the great outdoors together? For those times you’re doing a multi-day hike together, use the zippers to connect the 2 sleeping bags. It’s easy to do if one has a right zip and the other has a left zip. All other times, it’s still a useful sleeping bag on its own.
This Marmot mummy-shaped sleeping bag is meant for 3-season use, insulated for nights when the temperature hovers around freezing, but with ventilation options for warmer nights. I tested this bag firsthand during southern Africa’s winter when the overnight temperatures were in the low 30s and slept warm and cozy in my tent.
27. Black Diamond Moji Lantern
Need some tent or trail mood lighting? This Moji Lantern gives off 100 lumens of light and lasts for up to 70 hours with just 3 AAA batteries. Looking to dim the lights? The dimmer switch lets you adjust the brightness.
The hook at the top is perfect for hanging the light inside the REI Half Dome Tent or on a backpack for trail light after dark. Take off those headlamps inside the tent and cozy up underneath this lantern’s warm, inviting light.
28. Jetboil Flash Cooking System
After a long day on the trail, it’s rewarding to find a spot to camp out and enjoy a meal. For hikers looking for a quick camp meal without needing all the gear that comes with campsite cooking, the Jetboil Flash Cooking System is the answer.
Water boils in under 2 minutes and can be used to rehydrate freeze-dried meals and make instant soups and hot drinks. Couples (and singles of course!) can spend time appreciating their time together instead of fussing over campsite meal prep.
29. Coffee Press
Morning coffee is essential even for a non-coffee drinker like me (yes, shock and horror!). Nothing ruins a day quicker than if my other half doesn’t get his morning caffeine fix. So I always have a Coffee Press for our overnight hiking adventures.
Just add grounds and hot water (thank you Jetboil) and press. Voila! Outdoor coffee in a flash. Whoever said happy wife, happy life is 100%. But morning joe = happy beau is just as true!
Gifts for Hikers Under $25
No need to break the bank on hiking gifts! You can still be incredibly thoughtful with these gift ideas. They could even go together with a few of the hiking-themed stocking stuffers below for a complete gift bag or basket.
30. Multifunction Head Buff
Have you picked up on a theme yet? Outdoor gifts for him and her are about versatility and this Head Buff qualifies by having 12 different ways of wearing it. The UPF fabric is made of recycled plastic and its stretchiness lets you pull it in all different directions depending on how it’s worn.
Wear it like my husband does as a hairband on windy days, a do-rag to wick away sweat, or as extra neck protection against the elements and cold temperatures. I’ve even included it on my ski packing list as an extra layer under my helmet.
31. Hiking Socks
Any hiker who’s bought imitation hiking socks (guilty!) just because they were cheap or time was short will also tell you what a mistake that was. Trust me, the hiker on your gift list will be SO excited to get a pair of Hiking Socks.
Made of merino wool for maximum comfort and durability, they protect against chafing and blisters, as well as wick away moisture and fight odor. I won’t put my feet in anything other than proper hiking socks and neither should your hiking family member or friend.
32. Hydration Tablets
Prevent blisters with hiking socks, check! Now let’s avoid dehydration and leg cramps with Nuun Hydration Tablets. Hikers on the trail can simply drop a tablet in their water bottle for a low-sugar way to replenish the minerals and electrolytes lost by sweating.
They come in different flavors and are perfect for hiking, running, and other outdoor activities. They’re even handier when hiking long distances, in the summer heat, or in high-altitude destinations like Colorado.
33. Utensil Set
Hiking trail meals are usually grab-and-go hand foods. But when you need a spoon for a thermos of soup or a fork for a container of chicken pasta salad, this Utensil Set does the trick.
This set is lightweight, yet sturdy, and doesn’t conduct heat in the way a metal set does. These are not the right utensils for cooking outdoors but they get the job done when you want to enjoy your prepared lunch from the trail.
Stocking Stuffers for Hikers
Fill a holiday stocking with hiking-themed gifts or use this list to get some hiking gift basket ideas that’ll make a creative and well-thought-out gift under the tree.
34. Tenacious Tape
Tents, backpacks, clothing, and jackets rip. This seriously strong tape stops rips from spreading and just might outlast whatever it’s holding together.
35. Insect Repellant
Let’s face it, outdoor lover or not, no one likes bug bites. They itch and sting and in some cases can even make you sick. So, any list of gifts for outdoorsy people must include ways to keep that all-too-familiar buzzing sound far away.
Deet-based bug sprays have long been used but here a few ways to avoid this harsh chemical, all of which I personally used to travel through malaria zones in Africa.
- Picaridin: This Deet-free lotion has been shown to be more effective at fending off mosquitos and other biting insects than traditional Deet-based sprays. The lotion lasts up to 14 hours, longer than a spray, and comes in a much more travel-friendly bottle than spray canisters.
- REPEL Lemon Eucalyptus: Made with the pleasant-smelling lemon eucalyptus oil provides protection of up to 6 hours against mosquitos and biting insects and comes recommended (as are the others here) by the CDC. This is my go-to insect repellant whether I’m traveling or not.
- Permethrin: This spray is not for the skin but clothing, shoes, and fabric-based gear like tents and backpacks. Before hiking or camping, hang up clothes and gear on an outdoor line. Spray them with Permethrin and let everything air dry. The insect repellent binds to fabric fibers for up to 6 weeks. I did this for a safari camping trip to Botswana and came home without a single bug bite.
Yes, smartphones come with a compass utility app but using it takes battery life. An old-school physical compass is good to have on hand for wayfinding, whether it’s for some Geocaching fun or anyone feeling directionally challenged.
A loud whistle can scare wildlife away and even alert other hikers on the trail someone needs help. Keep it in an open backpack pocket or on a key ring for easy reach.
38. Chocolate Sea Salt RX Bars
RX Bars are high-protein bars only made with real ingredients like nuts, dates, and egg whites. They’re easy to grab and go and provide a solid boost of energy on the trail. The chocolate sea salt flavor is my favorite but they come in a variety of flavors, as well.If you’re hoping to put together a hiking gift basket, skip the processed, sugary snacks and give 12 grams of protein instead. Buy them individually or in a case of 12.
39. Pocket Hand Wash
Sometimes nature calls…even when you’re already on the trail. While everyone may get a good giggle over some wilderness potty jokes, all the laughs stop when thinking about what’s left over on your hands. Avoid the chemicals of hand sanitizer and carry some pocket soap instead.
Gifts for Day Hikers
If you’re looking for gifts for casual hikers and those outdoor lovers stick to day hikes on popular, well-established trails, consider these ideas below.
40. Osprey Daypack
While the right gear is still important for comfort and safety, day hikers don’t need to carry as much as someone preparing for a multi-day hike. With that, a slim yet rugged daypack will be perfect for storing the essentials.
The mesh pockets on the side fit things like water bottles and bug repellent for easy reach. The inside pockets and compartments can clip small items into place and even store a thin laptop without compromising cargo space. Having traveled and hiked with this daypack all over the world, I’m still surprised by how many things this bag can hold while not sacrificing portability or comfort.
41. Sony a6400 Mirrorless Camera
The Sony a6400 has long held a spot on outdoor gift guides but also just about every guide with gifts for travelers. It’s for good reason, too! This camera takes crisp, vivid photos just like a large DSLR camera, except it’s small, light, and perfect for travel.
The lenses included with the kit can be switched out and/or upgraded. But even as-is, expect sharp landscape photos and action photos alike because the Sony a6400 has an incredibly fast ability to auto-focus and capture any moment without blur. I’ve used this camera for every trip I’ve taken for the last 4 years and love it. Day hikers, in particular, won’t regret using space in a daypack to bring this camera along.
Perhaps the day hiker on your list also includes some birdwatching or wildlife spotting on their outdoor walks. Then, a solid pair of binoculars that can handle the elements make a great gift for a hiker. This model is waterproof and has 10×42 magnification to see birds and wildlife clearly.
While multi-day hikers and backpackers calculate every ounce to ensure they can carry all the essentials, day hikers will appreciate how easy these are to wear with the neck strap to grab and focus quickly. I’ve loved using these for many trips like hiking in Arches National Park and exploring the Costa Rican jungle.
Fun Hiking Gifts
43. A Book All About the Outdoors
Fun outdoor gifts aren’t only about gear! The Lost Art of Reading Nature’s Signs is all about getting back in tune with nature by taking more notice of all the clues nature leaves for us.
This book has more than 850 tips to help the hiking enthusiast on your list notice, track, and decipher everything from what the roots of tree say to how a butterfly can give signs about the weather. After reading this book, it’s impossible to see “just” a flower, a forest, or even the stars without being more connected to all that nature reveals.
44. Hiking-Themed Decor
Home spaces should show off personality, creativity, and interests. A rustic, birchwood sign proudly stating one of the most famous hiking quotes is a great gift for hiking lovers.
The sign and letters are cut precisely with a laser and pieced together by hand. You can even choose from several different sizes for the perfect fit!
45. Personalized Hiking Ornament
Personalized hiking gifts are thoughtful and show you have the recipient’s interests in mind when choosing a present. This personalized holiday ornament comes engraved with a quote about the outdoors and the person’s name.
This beautifully made ornament is a perfect way to remember a hiking trip or a National Parks family vacation at the end of the year during holiday celebrations!
46. Hiking-Themed Tees
Gifts for outdoor lovers like hikers and campers include items that celebrate the lifestyle. Who doesn’t love wearing a quality-made tee-shirt with their passions on full display?!
These hiking-themed tee shirts make fantastic Christmas gifts for hikers!
47. Lucky Coins for Geocaching
Geocaching goes hand in hand with hiking and is a ton of fun! Geocachers leave clues so others can find the outdoor location where they’ve left a hidden trinket or treasure. Hikers can easily incorporate geocaching into their hiking adventures, but not empty-handed!
These Geocaching Coins are made with antique metal and can be used to trade and swap out the treasures found along the geocaching trail!
Gifts for Hikers with Dogs
Hiking presents aren’t just for people but also for their outdoor-loving fur babies who tag along on hiking adventures.
48. Collapsible Dog Bowls
No matter who they’re for, hiking gear gifts need to be compact and practical. These Collapsible Dog Bowls can easily fit inside or clip onto backpacks to make sure hiking dogs stay hydrated and well-fed in the backcountry.
This collapsible 2-pack makes mealtime on-the-go simple. Their durable silicone means not having to worry about breaks and their ability to hold up to 3 cups of food makes them suitable for dogs large and small.
49. Dog Carrier Backpack
Just because a beloved pet has gotten up there in years doesn’t mean they can’t still join in the hiking fun. This vet-approved Dog Carrier Backpack comes in a variety of sizes for all different breeds of dogs. It’s designed to breathe so pups will be comfortable, safe, and won’t overheat.
I’ve used this backpack successfully for my own senior pups while hiking in Shenandoah National Park and Roanoke, Virginia along the Blue Ridge Parkway. I was glad to not leave my hiking buddy behind and so will the hiking enthusiast on your gift list.
Whether you’re looking for outdoor gifts for her, him, couples, or families, there are so many great gifts for hikers! It’s up to you to decide which will bring the biggest smile to your family and friends!
Which gifts for hikers are on your list?
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