What to buy the adventure junkie in your life? Joey Holmes is mad about outdoor clothing, gear and camping. As the editor of Cool of the Wild – a website dedicated to enjoying and exploring the wild outdoors, she knows a thing or two about what trail-loving hikers and mountain-mad alpinists would love to discover in their stockings this Christmas Day.
Here’s Joey’s guide to the top ten Christmas gifts for outdoor adventurers:
The new version of the classic Rab Microlight jacket has been named the ‘Summit’ for a very good reason. If the outdoor fanatic in your life, like me, plans to spend Boxing Day at the top of a mountain, this is most certainly the jacket for them. For active adventurers, the Microlight perfectly balances its lightweight construction with Nikwax treated Hydrophobic Down to ensure you can move quickly and easily without overheating. Pop a bottle of Nikwax’s Down Proof in its pocket for a gift that will keep on giving for years to come.
Giving someone a blanket for Christmas is like giving them a great big hug! And that’ll be their lasting memory when they’re out in the dark and the cold with the Therm-a-rest Proton. Dubbed a “security blanket for high adventure”, this is the perfect gift for anyone who enjoys a night on a cliff edge over one on the tiles!
This is a great gift for fans of the slopes. Aimed at ski tourers who need extra protection from the elements, Mammut has designed a glove that’s windproof and breathable with water repellent palms. I particularly like the little extra thoughtful details that have been added including finger webbing for securing a carabiner and a soft fabric section for dripping noses! To get the very best out of them, pair them with Nikwax’s Glove Proof — a sponge-on waterproofing product that maintains grip and breathability.
Whilst we’re on the subject of presents for winter sports fans – the new SMITH I/O MAG Goggles are high on my Christmas list. SMITH is dedicated to technical innovation mixed with stylish design, and these goggles are no exception. The MAG stands for magnets. Rimless interchangeable lenses can be swapped on the slopes easily using magnetic locking tabs — ideal if the weather turns. I find they give you fog-free, crystal clear vision and fit in synch with a helmet. As a stocking filler you could add Nikwax’s Visor Proof to
keep them rain repellent.
Lowe Alpine calls this backpack its favourite ever creation and I most certainly have to agree. It’s an incredibly well thought through bag that covers you for a lot of different occasions. This makes it the perfect gift for the all-round adventurer who loves climbing, camping, hiking, in fact anything that gets them outside!
This is a great nifty gift for the explorer in your family. It’s a lightweight tarp that can be erected into a waterproof shelter or folded up into an emergency bivi bag. It’s easy to stuff into the small sack that comes with it and it won’t add much weight to a backpack. Particularly handy for friends who aren’t known for checking the weather forecast before they head out!
Looking for a more permanent bivi bag for your adventurer friend? Then look no further than the Hunka from Alpkit. Weighing less than 400g, it packs up incredibly small making it the right choice for weight conscious backpackers and alpinists. I think it represents a value for money product that offers excellent protection and is an essential item for overnight microadventures at any time of year. Nikwax’s Tent and Gear SolarProof might sound like a present more suited to a summer birthday but it’s also a great waterproofer for bags, tents and synthetic fabrics, like shelters. It’s best applied regularly from new,
so it makes a great Christmas gift and will ensure your gear is summer holiday-ready as well.
Who doesn’t love a new base layer? I wear mine pretty much constantly! They’re practical, pack small and keep you warm; making them perfect for exploring outside in the winter. In fact, they’re a staple for any outdoor adventure lover, at any time of year. And, like socks, no gear junkie will mind receiving another one this Christmas. Helly Hansen designs its base layers from Merino Wool which means they’re lightweight and breathable and naturally antimicrobial so they won’t need lots of washing. But when you do, be sure to wash them in Nikwax Wool Wash to refresh their effectiveness.
Talking of socks, it wouldn’t be Christmas without a new pair would it? The perfect stocking filler, Armadillo’s Light Hiker Socks are great for any hiking fans in your family. Made from 100 percent wool I agree that they provide “the ultimate in foot comfort for all year round use”.
Last but not least, these Oboz Sawtooth Low hiking shoes are some of my personal favourites in the waterproof shoe world. They’re a lightweight, go anywhere shoe that has incredible traction, stable and cushioned midsoles that offer superior comfort, and are waterproof and breathable. Nikwax Fabric and Leather Proof will help to keep them in top condition and helping to ensure they last you for years to come, keeping your feet warm and dry.