The Wishlist: The Outdoorsman’s Holiday Gift Guide

Dec 9, 2014

Category: Gear

The wilds of the world call to some men more than others, beckoning them to explore far and wide, risking their lives to ascend the highest peaks, ford the iciest streams, and plunge the depths of the most exotic women. For these men there is only the next horizon and the stories that go along with a life of adventure. To live with that kind of passion takes dedication, an iron will, and above all, amazing gear.

To outfit your outdoorsman properly, we’ve found the 20 products that will keep him alive and help to bring him home safely with tales to tell.

Leatherman Skeletool CX

Leatherman Skeletool CX

Tactical Swiss Army: Leatherman typically makes tools for fixing things on the fly, but this time they have made something that not only fixes, but can mean the difference between survival, and death in the heart of the jungle. Stainless steel and Tungsten coupled with easy open blades make this a must-have on any wilderness trek. [Purchase: $58]

Garmin Fenix 2 GPS Watch

Garmin Fenix 2 GPS Watch

For Lost Boys: The Fenix 2 is partly a fitness tracker if that entices your outdoorsman, but more than that it is a way for them to stay connected while testing their mettle. Waypoint tracking, a 3-axis compass, altimeter, barometer, and total connectivity offer peace of mind for the wanderer and those at home. [Purchase: $400]

Patagonia Men's Nano-Air Hoody

Patagonia Men’s Nano-Air Hoody

Everywhere Wear: From freezing summits to warm base camps, the Nano-Air can do it all. With unparalleled stretch and breathability that earned it the Gear of the Year Award from Outside magazine, this has a pedigree for warmth and comfort under any conditions. [Purchase: $300]

LifeStraw

LifeStraw

Liquid Life: Outdoorsmen encounter some funky water when out in the world (or just south of the border) which can make them sick or even kill them. Give them the gift that will ensure they will never die of polluted water or suffer from Montezuma’s Revenge, no matter how contaminated their source. [Purchase: $20]

GoPro Hero4

GoPro Hero4

For the Record: Nothing truly happens unless it is on YouTube. To make sure that all of your guy’s exploits are captured for eternity – and for bragging rights – give him the world’s most advanced action camera. It records in full 4K underwater and over land with the highest framerate of any action camera to date. [Purchase: $500]

MSR Fury Tent

MSR Fury Tent

Home Away from Home: The two person Fury Tent is the best mountaineering survival tent out there. It bears double-walled protection yet is slender enough to be anchored to a tiny ledge. The insulation, 36-inch square footage, and low weight are incredible and easy to transport. [Purchase: $476]

Zippo Hand Warmer

Zippo A-Frame Hand Warmer

Pocket Rocket: It might use the same fuel and have the same design as a Zippo lighter, but this is a pocket warmer for the ages. With just one filling you can get 12 full hours of incredible warmth to keep all your fingers functioning or heat up the bottom of your sleeping bag. [Purchase: $15]

Smartwool Mountaineering Crew Sock

Smartwool Mountaineering Crew Sock

Playing Footsie: On a good arctic adventure, you lose a couple toes. On a great one, you don’t lose any. Make your outdoorsman’s every excursion great by letting him keep all his little piggies with these comfortable, sub-zero tested thermal socks. [Purchase: $19+]

Handpresso Wild Hybrid Coffee Machine

Handpresso Wild Hybrid Coffee Machine

Mobile Barista: Sleeping on the ground or dangling from a tree can make a man feel like an animal. Help him regain his humanity with a stellar cup of coffee or shot of espresso no matter where he is with the simple, lightweight, beautifully crafted but poorly-named Handpresso. [Purchase: $123]

Kelty Folding Cooler

Kelty Folding Cooler

Beer Box: Capable of holding 20 cans and ice, but also able to shrink down to a truly mobile size, the folding cooler is a cup holder, a footrest, and a welcome companion on any camping trip or backyard barbecue. [Purchase: $45]

Light My Fire Swedish FireSteel Fire Starter

Light My Fire Swedish FireSteel Fire Starter

Sparky: Lighters run out of fuel and won’t work in the wind. Matches are easily lost and will run out. For starting thousands of fires in the worst conditions, there is no gift that will literally warm an outdoorsman’s heart more than the flint and steel fire starter complete with neck lanyard. [Purchase: $14]

Filson Alaskan Guide Shirt

Filson Alaskan Guide Shirt

Lumberjack Approved: It looks just like any other shirt, but this flannel wonder is built for breathability and mobility as well as warmth. It comes with expandable pockets, ultimate wind resistance, and pleated joints for broad movement that lets your adventurer swing an axe or skin a bear with ease. [Purchase: $98]

Fenix Tactical Flashlight

Fenix Tactical Flashlight

Pathfinder: At 960 lumens with a total battery life of 50,000 hours and able to run on either rechargeable or standard batteries, the Fenix is a lightweight go-to tactical flashlight that will help a spelunker, night tracker, rescue worker, or deep woods explorer on the right trail, even when the sun has gone. [Purchase: $71]

Survival Books

Survival Books

Read the Manual: There’s two things you need to survive in the wilderness: Luck and skill. These won’t help with the first, but will give plenty of the second with evasion tactics, hunting and trapping food, full-color pictures of plants that won’t kill you, and how to save a life – maybe even your own. [SAS Survival Guide 2E: $6The Illustrated Guide to Edible Wild Plants: $7 | Special Operations Forces Medical Handbook: $11]

Mobile Mummy 800 Sleeping Bag

Mobile Mummy 800 Sleeping Bag

Complete Cocoon: This is a 2-season sleeping bag for when the weather is either cold, or when it is really cold. Tested to below freezing temperatures, the mobile bag is light enough for backpackers and can even be worn around the legs, or as a shawl for campground mobility. [Purchase: $330]

Bushnell Legend Folding Binoculars

Bushnell Legend Folding Binoculars

Longview: Whether spotting for snipers or just looking for Blue Jays, the folding binoculars from Bushnell provide 10x magnification in a hot, tight, light little body that also boasts ED Prime glass, HD water-repellent lens coatings, and BaK-4 prisms for better visibility in different lighting conditions. [Purchase: $150]

Patagonia Capilene 4

Patagonia Capilene 4

Ballers Baselayer: The foundation of any adventure outfit starts with the baselayer, and the Capilene 4 is the best all-around, all-terrain, all-weather base on the market. The Polartec power dry high efficiency fabric both wicks moisture away and keeps it from seeping in as odor fighters keep it fresh after days in the bush. [Shirt: $119 | Pants: $79]

Spyderco Paramilitary 2 Knife

Spyderco Paramilitary 2 Knife

Cut Away: Whether your outdoorsman needs personal protection or just a quick-draw utility knife, the Paramilitary 2 has all the right moves. It can be used by either hand, has a compression lock that won’t falter, and can even be pulled one-handed with gloves on for combat or cutting. [Purchase: $192]

BioLite BaseCamp Stove

BioLite BaseCamp Stove

Fine Dining: Going off the grid doesn’t mean you should eat – or live – like a hobo. Using branches or firewood The BaseCamp can cook up gourmet meals on the huge grill-style top, keep you warm and cozy, and even charge your electronic devices for those times when “roughin’ it” requires a Bluetooth connection and a live stock feed. [Purchase: $300]

Salomon Mens Quest 4D GTX

Salomon Men’s Quest 4D GTX

Climb Time: This is the true year-round hiking boot that can go anywhere and do anything. Waterproof Gore-Tex lining, gusseted tongue to keep debris outside, a second waterproof interior bootie, breathable fabric that dries quickly and prevents mildew, bacteria, and fungus, and a Contagrip outsole that can march, meander, and scramble up any incline. Truly top of the line. [Purchase: $177+]

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