25 Gifts for Hikers That Anyone Would Love
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The hiker or outdoor lover in your life will surely adore one of these gifts for hikers that make hitting the trail even more enjoyable.
The best gifts for hikers
If you’re looking for an activity that’s good for your mind, body, and spirit, you can’t get much better than hiking.
Spending time out on the trail has been found to reduce stress, sharpen thinking, increase creativity and improve mood, according to research published in Landscape and Urban Planning, PloS One, and PNAS.
Plus, it’s a great way to get both a cardio and resistance workout, thanks to the up-and-down nature of the trails and the stability and strength required to scramble over rocks and uneven terrain.
Since so many people are hitting the trail these days, we rounded up some of the best gifts for hikers to give to the trekkers in your life.
(And here are 16 hiking quotes to get you inspired.)
Darn Tough Hiking Socks
“Darn Tough Socks makes the most comfortable, durable, best fitting socks,” says adventure photographer and avid hiker Kelly Shoul, owner of In Love and Adventure in Colorado.
The seamless construction and moisture-wicking material can help your feet feel snug and remain blister-free.
“They even guarantee them for life,” Shoul adds. “If you need to, you mail in your clean pair of socks, and they’ll send you a code you can use on their website for a free pair.”
So although socks might seem like a silly present, they are one of the best gifts for hikers.
(Here are the other best types of hiking socks for your feet.)
Gregory Maya 10 Pack
“My husband and I both own Gregory daypacks, and we love them so much! They are super comfy and distribute the weight of your pack plus your items perfectly,” Shoul says.
What sets these backpacks apart: “Gregory backpacks have the most sturdy, chunky, solid hip-belts of any backpack,” Shoul explains. “Because of the solid hip belts, the weight on your hips is super comfortable. You can hike for miles with these packs on and not even realize you’re wearing a backpack.”
Rumpl Original Puffy Blanket
“Any outdoor lover needs one of these,” says Shoul, of this weather-resistant, insulated blanket from Rumpl. “My husband and I had been eyeing up the Rumpl blanket for a few years, but the price tag always deterred us.”
After purchasing it for her husband as a Christmas gift last year, she says it’s worth every penny. “The material is really soft and feels really nice against the skin. It’s super warm and lightweight but also breathes,” Shoul says.
Opinel Colorama No. 7 Knife
For a multi-use knife that’s stylish, small, and handy, go for this Opinel folding pocketknife.
“It has a nice balance of size and weight,” says Emily Appelbaum, a contributing writer for the Family Destinations Guide. “You’re going to be able to cut food, build a cut rope, and perform most tasks that you need to do while on a hike. It’s a really light knife that’s good in every backpacking trip.”
Mountain Hardwear Women’s Dynama Hiking Pants
“For any woman who has curves, these pants are the most comfortable for a day on the trail,” says registered dietitian, certified personal trainer, and avid hiker Kayla Girgen, founder of Nutrition Untapped. “They have a stretch waistband, pockets, and are UV- and water-resistant.”
Plus, the stylish ankle length of these pants from Mountain Hardwear means you can wear these pants to any casual outdoor get-together.
If you prefer to let your legs breathe, check out these hiking shorts for women.
Sea to Summit Aeros Premium Inflatable Travel Pillow
“For overnight hikes, I thought I could just use a sweatshirt for my pillow, but that was a quick regret—my sleep was terrible,” Girgen says.
“Then I got this [Summit Aeros] pillow. It’s a lightweight option that takes up minimal space in your pack. It’s soft-touch and isn’t noisy if you toss and turn.”
Jetboil Flash Camping and Backpacking Stove
“Whether you are pulling an over-nighter or just a day trip, you can make coffee, heat soup, boil water, and more with the Jetboil system. This is a must-have for any hiker,” Girgen says of the gas-powered stove, which boils water in less than two minutes.
For an even more impressive gift, add one of the compatible accessories like the coffee press, hanging kit, skillet, or cooking pot.
Explorer Cold Brew 4 Caffeine Sampler
The hiker in your life who can’t go without a morning brew will love this cold brew sampler from Explorer. The two-ounce bottles of cold brew are small enough to stow more than one in a pack. Then to drink, you simply mix one small bottle with eight ounces of water to make a ten-ounce cup of coffee that will yield a delicious caffeine boost on the trail.
RapidPure Scout Inline Water Purifier System
Even when hiking on a day trip, you might not be able to carry enough water.
“My husband and I were once on a hike in Big Bend National Park in Texas when we realized we misread the trail map,” says Alex Davis, an ardent hiker and camper and co-founder of couples health and wellness site Ryan and Alex Duo Life.
The hike wasn’t 8 miles; it was 16. With temperatures near 100°F, they hadn’t brought enough water.
This palm-sized filter connects to the tube of a hydration pack and cleans your water before it reaches your mouth. Adds Davis: “RapidPure is the only water filter we’ve come across that strains out viruses in addition to bacteria and parasites.”
Yeti Rambler Vacuum Bottle
For personal trainer, nutritionist, and hiker Christine VanDoren, hydration is key, which is why she recommends this durable Yeti bottle.
“Whether it is warm or chilly where your next adventure lies, the Yeti Rambler Vacuum Bottle will keep your drink at the right temperature, helping you stay hydrated,” she says. “It is leak-proof and made out of strong materials that will prevent it from being damaged whether you accidentally drop it on your hike or it gets tossed around in your pack.”
Gentlemen’s Hardware Glow in the Dark Water Bottle
After exposure to light during the day, the mountain illustration glows at night for easy sipping.
Night Running Gear Shoe Lights
“There are quite a lot of hikers that actually enjoy night hiking. These night lights allow you to see what’s in front of you,” says hiking and camping guide Mark Evans, a camp consultant at Summer Camp Hub.
“What I like the most about them is that you can either use them as a headlamp, shoe lights, or chest light. For hikers who enjoy some night hiking on their overnight trips, this is a great gift.”
KUYOU Hydration Backpack
For those who prefer to wear their water instead of carrying a bottle, Evans suggests this KUYOU hydration pack. “It comes equipped with a 2-liter hydration bladder and provides excellent comfort,” he says.
“It does a great job of keeping your water cool for a decent amount of time, helping you stay refreshed throughout the hike,” Evans says.
The hydration pack rests easily on the shoulders, he adds, making it a good choice for trips with tough hikes. It features a decent number of zipper compartments and two side pouches, so you can bring quite a few treats and just about anything you might need on your hike.
REI Co-op Flash Hiking Boots
For a versatile, comfortable, and approachable hiking boot, gear expert and lead editor at Backpackers.com Arthur McMahon recommends the REI Flash boots. Good footwear is one of the best gifts for hikers.
“They’re the first boots ever made by the REI Co-op, and they’ve been designed with the input of thousands of avid hikers,” he says. “If you want to give someone a comfortable hiking shoe that can do it all, the REI Flash Hiking Boots should be at the top of your shopping list.”
The North Face Thermoball Jacket
“One of my day-hiking essentials is my North Face Thermoball Jacket, which comes in styles for both men and women,” Davis says.
“This jacket has been a mainstay as it packs down small and light, yet keeps you warm in a huge range of temperatures from 30 to 60°F.”
Davis says this is one of her favorite gifts for hikers.
“I have tried a variety of puff jackets but prefer the ones from North Face because they are slimmer and longer than others, which means they fit and cinch better under a backpack,” she adds.
Peak Design Capture Clip
Many hikers take cameras along on trips, but constantly taking it out of your pack to snap photos can be a hassle. The solution: this Peak Design clip.
“This is a unique camera clip that attaches right to your backpack strap so that your camera is right at hand to capture the beautiful surroundings on your hikes,” explains Megan McDuffie, owner of the outdoors site Fresh Off the Grid.
“Personally, any time that I put my camera in my backpack, I tend to use it way less. As soon as I started using the Capture Clip, it made my camera so much more convenient to use on the trail!”
(Here are 7 of America’s most spectacular hiking trails.)
AGPTEK AO2 MP3 Player
Since every smartphone plays music now, the MP3 player is obsolete, right? Wrong, says certified personal trainer and founder of Fitness Minimalists Chad Alexander, a veteran of hiking the Pacific Crest Trail.
“Many hikers rely on their phones for navigation, so battery life is extremely precious—especially for those who are out hiking for a week or more,” he explains. “If you are looking for an awesome gift to give a hiking enthusiast, look no further than a simple MP3 player.”
Alexander recommends the AGPTEK MP3 Player as one of the best gifts for hikers. The battery life is incredible (over 60 hours), and you can stock up the removable memory card with hundreds of hours of motivating music and audiobooks.
“This little player weighs far less than an ounce, is super affordable, and it lasted me the entire 2,650-mile hike of the Pacific Crest Trail,” he says. “This MP3 player can work wonders for preserving the life of a phone and camera while out on the trail.”
Anker Astro E1 Portable Charger
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“Another incredible gift for hikers is a lightweight rechargeable power pack,” Alexander says.
“Whether they need to charge up a camera, headlamp, or phone, this lightweight gem comes in at 4.3 ounces and will get the job done at least 2 to 3 times. I always bring an extra power pack for group hikes, and my friends can’t thank me enough when they need a quick charge.”
AeroPress Go Travel Coffee Press
For hikers who prefer a hot cup of joe to start the day, hiker, backpacker and content manager at Coffee Affection Kate McDonnell recommends the AeroPress Go.
“There’s nothing like a hot cup of coffee on a windy mountain peak or in a wildflower-filled meadow,” McDonnell says.
“The AeroPress brews quickly, hardly weighs anything, and makes great coffee. It’s the perfect boost to get you back down the trail. And the whole thing packs into a handy travel cup with a lid.”
Freefly Bamboo Lightweight Hoody
Lightweight sun shirts are a must for hikers who hit the trail during the warmer months. Julien Heron, co-founder of Outdoors Generations, favors this one from Freefly.
“Freefly shirts are made from lightweight, soft-to-the-touch, and sustainable bamboo. Unlike traditional polyester-based sun shirts, bamboo-based shirts are smell-resistant. They’re also super breathable, and they have built-in UPF protection,” Heron says. “Plus, the company has dozens of styles that look just as good in town as they do in the mountains.”
Sport Berkey Water Bottle
If you don’t hike with a hydration pack, this Sport Berkey filtering water bottle will ensure you never go thirsty.
“Water is essential for any hike, but can also add unwanted weight to your pack,” says registered dietitian nutritionist Maya Feller, founder of Maya Feller Nutrition, who recommends this water bottle.
“It solves this problem by being a portable filtration system that can filter water from any source, on the go, including remote streams, lakes, stagnant ponds, and sub-standard water supplies.”
It’s a lightweight bottle that holds 22 ounces of water, she adds, with the ability to filter more than 25 gallons.
TrailBuddy Lightweight Trekking Poles
With trekking or hiking poles for added stability, no trail is too difficult or too treacherous. This top-rated TrailBuddy pair features padded handles, adjustable heights, and four different tip options for any conditions, plus they break down small enough to tuck into a pack when you don’t need them.
Chaco Women’s Z/Cloud 2 Hiking Sandals
For warm-weather hikes, hiking sandals provide support and stability while also allowing your feet to breathe, and this pair from Chaco is one of the best. The multiple layers of straps ensure stability, while the sturdy rubber outsole and cushy footbed mean you’ll be able to traverse any terrain comfortably.
prAna Stretch Zion Pants Men’s
These water-repellent, quick-drying, sun-protecting prAna pants are stylish enough to wear in and out of the wilderness. Reviewers rave about the degree of stretch the pants have while also remaining durable.
“A satellite communication device is a great gift, especially for those who hike with small children and are worried about any of them or the group as a whole getting lost,” Evans says.
“At the touch of a button, [SPOT] sends out an SOS message so people can easily find you. You can even add a custom message to send to someone along with your location if you just want to give people updates on where you are.”
Now that you know about these great gifts for hikers, check out the most stunning hiking trails in America.
- Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America: "Nature experience reduces rumination and subgenual prefrontal cortex activation"
- PLOS ONE: "Creativity in the Wild: Improving Creative Reasoning through Immersion in Natural Settings"
- Landscape and Urban Planning: "The benefits of nature experience: Improved affect and cognition"
- Kelly Shoul, adventure photographer and avid hiker and owner of In Love and Adventure in Colorado
- Emily Appelbaum, contributing writer for Family Destinations Guide
- Kayla Girgen, RD, LD, CPT, registered dietitian, certified personal trainer, avid hiker and founder of Nutrition Untapped
- Alex Davis, an ardent hiker and camper and co-founder of couples health and wellness site Ryan and Alex Duo Life
- Christine VanDoren, RD, CPT, personal trainer and nutritionist
- Mark Evans, hiking and camping guide and camp consultant at Summer Camp Hub
- Arthur McMahon, gear expert and lead editor at Backpackers.com
- Megan McDuffie, hiker and owner of the outdoors site Fresh Off the Grid
- Chad Alexander, certified personal trainer and founder of Fitness Minimalists
- Kate MacDonnell, writer and content manager at CoffeeAffection.com and lifelong hiker and backpacker
- Julien Heron, co-founder of Outdoor Generations
- Maya Feller, MS, RD, CDN, registered dietitian nutritionist and founder of Maya Feller Nutrition