The Ultimate REI Outdoor Gift Guide for 2017


*This post is sponsored by REI.

**UPDATE: Our 2017 Outdoor Gift Guide was updated for the 2018 Holiday Season. This holiday season, wouldn’t it be great if you could get all of your shopping down in one fell swoop? We’ve scoured REI and our own gear closets and put together this ultimate outdoorsy gift guide featuring the best gifts for hikers, campers, van lifers, photographers, dog-owners, outdoor parents, and more.  Broken down by category, there is a unique outdoor gift for every kind of adventurer in your life, and every single gift idea on here is available at REI. That means less time running around shopping and more time to #OptOutside.  And don’t forget, if you’re an REI member you’ll be earning dividend points with all of your holiday purchases. That means when April rolls around, you’ll be getting 10% back as cash or credit towards new summer camping gear.

Outdoor Apparel Gifts for Women

Our favorite outdoor gifts for the special lady in your life – and that means moms, sisters, daughters friends, and lovers.

  • Patagonia Hooded Down Sweater

This Patagonia down hoody is a classic. Warm, compressible, and windproof, it’s a go-to for cold winter weather.

  • REI Screeline Hike Tights

The North Face used to sell awesome hiking tights but unfortunately, they are difficult to find now.  REI’s Screeline Hike Tights are awesome replacement tights. Not only are they warm and flattering, but they are also super durable and even have side pockets to hold all your favorite snacks and essentials. 

  • North Face Shellista II Mid Winter Boots

These North Face Shellista Mid Winter Boots are perfect for snowy strolls or for slipping into something comfy after skiing. 

  • Force of Nature Water Bottle

“Buster of Moves” whether on a trail, on the water, or on the slopes. This Force of Nature water bottle is a great gift for your badass gal pal or girlfriend.

  • Sorel Out ‘N About Slide Slippers

I wear these slippers on chilly mornings when I’m letting our dog Charlie outside. I love the look, the diversity, and durability of the indoor/outdoor sole.

  • Pistil Osa Hat

This is one of the warmest winter hats I have, and I love that it covers and keeps my ears nice and toasty. 

The ultimate outdoor gift list featuring best gift ideas for hikers, campers, van lifers, photographers, dog-owners, paddlers, outdoor parents, and more

Outdoor Apparel Gifts for Men

Outdoor gifts for him – that special hunk, dad, son, or bro.

  • REI’s Wallace Lake Flannel

We originally had the Marmot Ridgefield Shirt Jacket on our list but with our 2018 updates, we’ve swapped in REI’s Wallace Lake Flannel. It’s perfect for sitting by the campfire or winter walks and comes in 6 unique color options.

  • Patagonia Hooded Down Sweater

I love my Patagonia down hoody so much I had to include the men’s version. Warm, compressible, and windproof, it’s a go-to for cold winter weather.

  • Sorrel Falcon Ridge Slippers

A super comfy slipper for lounging around the house, playing fetch in the yard, or rummaging around in the garage.

  • Sherpa Adventure Gear Renzing Hat

These wool hats are fair-trade certified and hand-knitted in Nepal by a women’s co-op.

  • Arc’teryx Conveyor Belt

This mountain belt is built for the outdoors, yet nice enough to wear out for dinner and drinks.

Gifts for Outdoor Photographers

Outdoor gadget gifts for the person who likes to capture their adventures on camera.

  • GoPro Hero 7

You all know that the GoPro is my go-to action cam. I use it for all of my solo travels and my YouTube videos, and the GoPro 7 continues to raise the bar on previous GoPros. 

  • Gorilla Pod

You don’t need a flat, level surface with this tripod. The arms wrap around anything from tree branches to hiking poles, allowing you to frame and be in your shots.

  • Peak Design Slide Camera Strap

I used this camera strap on my Everest Basecamp trek to capture stunning photos. I love how easy it adjusts and slides so you can quickly bring the camera up to your face.

  • GoPro Karma Grip Video Stabilizer

The only way to get smooth GoPro footage is with a Gimbal. The Karma Grip is one of the only GoPro gimbals that you can both hand hold or mount using any of the standard GoPro mounts. For anyone who is serious about making videos, I’d highly recommended investing in a gimbal, as it will take your videos to a whole new level. Here’s a video I posted on Instagram that was shot with the GoPro Karma. See how stable it is compared to hand holding the camera?

  • Moab Lander iPhone Case 

Does anyone else have issues with their iPhone when they are out in cold temps? This iPhone 6/6s/7/8 case uses thermal technologies to extend your battery life in extreme conditions. You can also snag one for iPhone 6+/6s+/7+/8+ or the iPhone X.

Top Outdoor Gifts for Adventure Photographers

Check out more of our favorite gifts for photographers. 

Gifts for Car Campers

These outdoor gifts are for campers, newbies and experts alike.

  • REI Co-op Camp Bundle

This all-in-one bundle of a sleeping bag + sleeping pad + 2 person tent is perfect for people getting their feet wet in camping. It’s quality gear, and you can’t beat the price.

  • REI Co-op Flexlite Chair

This lightweight camping chair made by REI comes in a lot of cool colors and has a similar design to the more expensive Helinox chair (but at a fraction of the price).

  • Barebones Forest Lantern

This Barebones Forest Lantern combines a vintage look with modern capabilities. It comes with a USB port that you can use to charge your phone, and the lantern itself runs off of rechargeable batteries.

  • JBL Charge 3 Portable Speaker

Waterproof, a super long battery life, and bomber sound. This JBL Charge 3 portable speaker will make you the life of the party. Check out our favorite outdoor podcasts to listen to for inspiration.

  • Yeti Tundra 65 Cooler

If you’ve been on a multi-day rafting trip, you know that Yeti is the cooler of choice for keeping food fresh, beers cold, and cocktail ice frozen for days on end.

  • SpikeBall

Spikeball is volleyball meets 4-square. It’s a lightweight, packable game perfect for car camping, rafting trips, or a day at the beach.

Check out more great camping games to enjoy with family & friends.

Gifts for the Camp Chef

The camp chef needs the right tools to cook you that delicious dinner. Here are our favorite outdoor cooking gifts.

  • Camp Chef Everest 2-Burner Camp Stove

This Camp Chef stove is efficient, easy to set up, and gets a pot of water boiling in no time. It also has an ignition switch so you don’t have to track down a lighter to cook your meals.

  • Hydro Flask 10 oz Wine Tumbler

Whether you want to keep your white wine cold or your hot chocolate hot, this Hydro Flask tumbler keeps your drinks at the right temp and is durable enough to take a beating around camp. If you’re looking for a new favorite cocktail to enjoy around the campfire, here are our favorites.

  • Lodge Camp Dutch Oven

A dutch oven is one of the most diverse cooking tools. Chili over the fire, cinnamon rolls, and even dutch oven tempura, which is Kim’s (BFT’s Content Director) specialty. Here are six great one pot camping recipes to try.

  • Sea to Summit Ultra-Sil Kitchen Sink 

With this camping kitchen sink, clean-up is quick and easy.

  • WACACO Minipresso GR Portable Espresso Machine

Be a trailside barista for all your friends with this portable espresso machine. Don’t forget to pack your favorite ground-up beans from home.

Gifts for Outdoor Parents

Just because you have a kid doesn’t mean you can’t go outside. Here are our top 3 gifts for outdoor parents at REI.

  • REI Kids’ Co-op Nodder 25 Sleeping Bag

As your kiddo grows, this 3-season children’s sleeping bag can lengthen allowing you to stretch it out over multiple seasons.

  • Deuter Kid Comfort Air Child Carrier

With this great hiking child carrier, you can throw your little one on your back and still have room to spare for your day hiking essentials.

  • YayLabs! SoftShell Ice Cream Ball

This ice cream making ball will keep kids entertained while camping. It’s the perfect post-hike treat for your family to enjoy together.

Gifts for Adventurous Dog Owners

Take your best friend with you on the trail. Here’s our favorite gifts for dog owners. 

  • High Roller Ball

This ball will last throw after throw, bounce after bounce. If your dog has lots of energy, they will love chasing it around the yard or camp.

  • Ruffwear Front Range Dog Harness

If your dog is the kind that pulls on you, this Ruffwear Front Range harness helps you stay in control and prevents the leash from getting tangled around your dog’s legs.

  • Carabiner Light

This carabiner light easily attaches to a dog’s collar and is great for evening hikes.

  • GoPro Fetch Camera Mount Dog Harness

See the world from your dog’s perspective. This GoPro Fetch mount allows you to attach a GoPro to your dog’s back and capture some fun POV footage.

  • Ruffwear Dog Bowl

These Ruffwear dog bowls are lightweight and foldable, so you can throw them in your backpack (or your dog’s). They also have a sturdy wide base, making it difficult for your pup to knock them over.

Best Outdoor Gifts for Adventure Dog Owners

Gifts for the Jet Setter

Practical gifts for the international traveler who never seems to settle down.

  • Patagonia Lightweight Travel Mini Hip Pack

Fanny packs are back in style. Whether you are headed to a music festival or traveling and don’t want to carry a purse, you’ll barely notice this lightweight, super stylish Patagonia hip pack.

  • SteriPEN Ultra Water Purifier

We used a SteriPen the entire time we were trekking to Everest Basecamp last year. With it, we avoided wasting a ton of disposable plastic water bottles, and we also saved money.

  • Sherpani Lima Shoulder Bag

This stylish travel shoulder bag comes with security in mind; it has zippered locks and a system for locking your purse to a chair or your bus/train seat.

  • REI Co-op Shower Roll

REI’s Shower Roll has replaced REI’s shower kits. It comes with a hook for hanging and has multiple compartments to keep you organized. I love that it also comes with a built-in mirror and includes a clear TSA-friendly removable case for small liquids.

  • REI Big Haul Duffel

REI’s new duffel line can be worn carried three ways – by the handles, over the shoulder, or as a backpack. The material is extremely durable, water-resistant, and can carry a big load of gear.

Best Outdoor Gifts for Adventure Travelers

Check out our full review of the best REI travel bags & accessories. 

Gifts for the Van Lifer

Friends with a van-lifer? These outdoor gifts will help they stay clean and comfortable on the road. 

  • REI Co-op Multi Towel Lite X-Large

Whether you are showering or drying dishes, a stack of quick dry towels is a top van life essential.

  • NEMO Helio LX Pressure Shower

This portable NEMO shower has great water pressure (via a foot pump), and if you leave it out in the sun, the water gets surprisingly warm. I took this to Burning Man last year, and it was a huge hit.

  • Cabiniste Down Booties

These down booties are warm and cozy, and the sole is thick enough to run outside with if you need to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night. The fit is perfect since they aren’t unisex and come sized specifically for men or women.

  • Rumpl Puffy Blanket

This lightweight,  extra warm blanket is awesome for cold nights in the van or curling up outside to catch the evening stars.

The Best Outdoor Gifts for Van Lifers

Check out my top 15 kitchen essentials for camper van cooking.

Gifts for the National Park Lover

Love our public lands? So do we. These outdoor gifts help the National Park lover show their enthusiasm for the lands that make America great. 

  • America the Beautiful Annual Pass

At $80 a year, the America the Beautiful Pass (an annual National Parks Pass) is a great deal and helps support and maintain our National Parks.

  • The Landmark Project National Parks Beanies

We talk a lot here on the blog about raising awareness of issues that affect our public lands. Spread the message further of your support for our National Parks with these great beanies–we love the Yellowstone National Park beanie featuring the park’s iconic bison. Check out our Yellowstone National Park road trip itinerary if you haven’t already.

  • Chacos Sandals National Park Foundation Collection

We originally had These Chaco sandals are designed after Yosemite’s vibrant color scheme.

Best Outdoor Gifts for National Park Lovers

Gifts for the Backcountry Hiker

Lightweight is key in the backcountry. Here are some of our favorite outdoor gifts for backpackers and long-distance hikers. 

  • Garmin InReach

The Garmin InReach is a backcountry communication device that allows you to send messages to friends, family, or in the worst case, emergency responders when you are off the grid. It’s a great tool for giving your loved ones peace of mind.

  • MSR Hubba Hubba Tent

The MSR Hubba Hubba Tent has been around for over 10 years, and this new model is a great compromise between durability and weight.

  • Jetboil Flash Cooking System

The Jetboil is the simplest and fastest way to boil water in the backcountry. It’s lightweight and consists of a stove and a pot for cooking.

  • Black Diamond Storm Headlamp

This Black Diamond headlamp has a bunch of different settings and is water resistant, making it a great option when the weather is iffy.

  • Platypus Soft Bottle

These lightweight, foldable, and durable water bottles are awesome for backpacking since they take up no room when they are empty. These were the bottles I used when hiking the John Muir Trail.

  • ENO Sub 6 Hammock

This Sub6 Hammock is the newest, lightest hammock by ENO. I recently tested it out on a backpacking trip, and when paired with the Helios suspension system, it’s strong and sets up very easily.

Best Outdoor Gifts for Backpackers and Hikers

Best Books for The Outdoor Adventurer

Give your favorite adventurer something to read in their downtime with these popular adventure books. 

  • A Walk in the Woods

Bill Bryson’s humor will have all your adventure friends laughing while dreaming up their next big adventure.

  • No Shortcuts to the Top

This is a great read for that friend who has big adventure goals set for the upcoming year. This inspirational memoir recounts Ed Viesturs summit of the highest 14 peaks in the world.

  • Climbing from Gym to Rock

It’s a big jump, going from the gym to actual mountains. This instructional how-to book about rock climbing helps get you ready.

  • The Backpacker’s Field Manual

A complete how-to guide on everything backpacking, including first aid and ultralight hiking.

Gifts for the Water Lover

  • NRS HydroSkin Gloves

Cold water or weather won’t create excuses with these great gripping gloves that cut wind and cold chill out.

  • NRS Thrive Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board Bundle

This inflatable stand-up-paddle board stores small, but provides the stability and durability of a solid SUP. It even has a bunch of D rings that you can use to attach gear if you want to take it on a grand adventure.

  • SealLine Discovery View Dry Bag

These translucent dry bags allow you to find where you packed your sunscreen, snacks and extra layers so you can enjoy more action time on the water.

  • ORU Kayak

The ORU Kayak is foldable and fits in a backpack. It’s perfect for the apartment or van-dwelling paddler who doesn’t have a way to store or transport a normal kayak.

Best Outdoor Gifts for Paddlers

Gifts for Winter Junkies

  • Reversible Polar Buff 

The classic Buff taken to an advanced level. I love having the soft fleece lined side of this reversible Buff next to my skin for added warmth. I always wear it on cold days when I’m skiing.

  • Outdoor Research Verglas Gaiters

Gaiters are an important piece of equipment for anyone venturing out on the trail in winter, as they help keep snow out of your boots. These Outdoor Research Gaiters (men’s / women’s) are a great option for winter hikes or more serious expeditions.

  • MSR EVO Snowshoes

These snowshoes are a great value and a nice set for someone who is just getting into snowshoeing. They are fairly lightweight, maneuverable, and will last for years.

  • Transpack XT1 Ski/Snowboard Boot Pack

For skiers and snowboarders who like to travel. Your boots are the most important piece of equipment, and this ski/snowboard boot bag makes it easy to take them with you.

  • Yaktrax ICEtrekkers Diamond Grip Traction System

If icy sidewalks and trails make you nervous, these Yaktrax easily slip over your shoes and provide excellent traction even on the slickest of surfaces.

Best Outdoor Gifts for Winter Junkies

Best Stocking Stuffers for Adventurers

Some quick and easy stocking stuffers to round out our list of outdoor gifts. 

  • Darn Tough Hiking Socks

Hands-down my favorite socks for endless miles (here are their men’s hiking socks too). Plus if any Darn Tough socks get a hole they will replace the entire pair–they are built to last.

  • Gear Aid Tenacious Tape

There’s no need to throw away your sleeping bag or tent just because it has a hole in it. Use this Gear Aid Tenacious Tape to quickly repair your gear on the go.

  • SaltStick Electrolyte Salt Capsules

A friend gave these to Kim, BFT’s Content Director, on her PCT thru-hike and they’ve been a must in her hiking first aid kit since. They are great for any athlete to minimize muscle cramping, heat stress, and fatigue due to unbalanced electrolyte levels.

Still not sure?

  • Give an REI Class as a Gift

Learn bike maintenance, common knots for outdoor adventures, basic outdoor rock climbing skills, or more at one of REI’s classes. This is a great gift for your minimalist friends who prefer experiences over gifts. If one of your favorite outdoor adventure friends just moved, it’s also a thoughtful gift to help them meet others who enjoy the outdoors in their new locale.

Like this outdoor gift guide? Share it on Pinterest!

The ultimate outdoor gift list featuring best gift ideas for hikers, campers, van lifers, photographers, dog-owners, paddlers, outdoor parents, and more

 Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means if you make a purchase, I receive a tiny bit of compensation at no added cost to you. I only recommend products that I have tried out and truly love, and any purchases you make help keep this blog going. Thanks for all of your support, and if you ever have any questions about any of the products featured on my site, please email me. Thanks! Kristen

There are 5 comments on this post.

About the author

Hi! I'm Kristen....blogger, hiker, sunset-watcher, and dance floor shredder. I feel most alive in the outdoors and created this website to help you enjoy the best that the West has to offer.

5 Comments on “The Ultimate REI Outdoor Gift Guide for 2017

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  1. Nice choice of gift ideas! Gonna get some snow shoes for this winter 🙂

    […] Bearfoot Theory. This list is sponsored by REI, but I trust Bearfoot Theory for all things outdoorsy. Gifts that get you or a family member outside more are worth every penny if you ask me. […]

    This list is great, I got a few of these last year and my buddy loved them. However, you should add campcloud hammocks on here for sure. I found their site a few months ago after seeing they sponsored most outdoor trade shows. Their prices are half off other hammock companies and I think the designs are pretty awesome, but maybe that is just me! But quality is definitely amazing. It’s if you do another write-up!

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