25 Christmas Gift Ideas For the Outdoor Enthusiast in Your Life
#1 REI Lightweight Hammock
Any outdoor enthusiast is sure to love one of these lightweight hammocks! Compatible yet spacious, they are a nice addition to bring along any hiking or camping trip! Plus, REI not only provides high quality and sustainable products, but they also invest 70% of their profits back to the outdoor community – a double win!
#2 Food Dehydrator
A dehydrator is a great investment for those interested in making jerky and their own dehydrated meals. There are various dehydrators out there but this is one we have used for years and are still very happy with it! Although it is a little basic when it comes to features (for example, it doesn’t rotate), it gets the job done and doesn’t break the bank! Currently found at Canadian Tire.
#3 Passes for Canmore Cave Tours
A must do experience: discover and explore the Rat’s Nest caves of Grotto Mountain. Canmore Cave Tours offers tours ranging in difficulty and time to suit any comfort level (4.5-6 hours). Beyond climbing and crawling through the cave, you get to see and explore fluorescent rocks and minerals. Experience caving is not required. Book your tour online: Canmore Cave Tours
#4 Osprey Hydration Pack
Ask any outdoor adventurist how important a good pack is – the effects are undeniable.
Osprey is an excellent brand making long-lasting, functional, and lightweight packs without completely breaking the bank. Most of their packs come with a specialized compartment for handy, BPA-free water bladders. They believe in the importance of finding the right pack to fit your body shape, and even have a sizing and fitting guide on their website.
To top it off, ALL of their products are under warranty – FOREVER.
If something goes wrong, you can contact them and they will help you out. Find these beauties at any sports equipment store such as MEC, Atmosphere, or SportChek.
This is a good one for your outdoor enthusiast who has all the gear, all the knowledge, all the bragging rights already.
Houseplants help bring the outdoors inside. Many of them help purify the air and remove environmental toxins, aside from really brightening up a space with lush green colours.
They’re also incredibly fun to shop for because there are SO many different types of species. Each plant has a specific design, texture, hue, and vibe – and I like to think people’s choice of houseplants reflect their inner nature, which makes this gift more personal.
There are shade plants, sun-loving plants, drought-tolerant plants, you name it. Keep your special person in mind while wandering a garden center and I guarantee something will pop out at you.
If you are nervous about the extent of your giftee’s green thumb, start here.
#6 Trail Books
Trail books are an awesome gift to give someone for extra inspiration and ideas on where to head out on their next adventure! Kananaskis Trail Guides has numerous editions and provides extension information on one of the most beautiful regions to hike in Canada. That being said, other books are available on snowshoeing trails and cross country skiing in Western Canada. Perhaps even consider a trail guide book for other regions and parks such as Waterton or the Kootenays! Visit Chapters/Indigo or Owl’s Nest Books to pick out your outdoor trail guide!
#7 For Her: MEC TREK PANTS
It is often difficult to find a pair of women’s outdoor pants that are both functional and cute. Surprise the women in your life with a pair of the MEC Trek pants that happen to be just that! These are warm and fuzzy fleece pants that will keep the warmth in when you are out!
- Can be used for layering – streamlined leg prevents bulking
- Made from warm midweight polyester fleece
- Front pockets with hidden zippers
- Made with bluesign-approved fabric – sustainable material with a reduced environmental footprint!
#8 For Him: Smartwool Merino 250 Baselayer
These awesome long johns from MEC can be used as a base layer when engaging in outdoor activities such as skiing or snowboarding or as an extra layer on chilly evenings! These are the perfect gift for any men in your life because they are crucial for comfort and warmth and often not an item men would be willing to buy for themselves… he will thank you later!
- Ideal for camping, hiking, and other outdoor sports and activities all year long
- 100% merino wool (comfy and warm!)
- Sweat wicking, naturally antimicrobial
#9 GSI Halulite Minimalist Cookset
Super lightweight and compact, this cookset comes with 0.6L pot that duals as a drinking canister (heat protecting sleeve included), mini “oven mitt”, as well as a compactible eating utensil. Cook and eat your dinner in this pot, or fill it up with your favourite hot drink! (The lid also has drinking slots!)
#10 Dog Sledding
Gift someone with one of the most stereotypical Canadian experiences: dog sledding! Snowy Owl Sled Dog Tours and Howling Dog Tours offer day and multiday trips based out of Canmore. Above partaking in an absolute thrill, spend an amazing day out in the beautiful country and learn about the history behind dog sledding. And, don’t worry, these companies take incredibly good care of their dogs; they’re dedicated to ethical and humane practices. They even offer summer tours to meet and greet the dog teams!
#9 Via Ferrata Passes
Mt Norquay, in Banff, has a climbing networks called Via Ferrata. Invented by the italians, Via Ferrata, “iron path”, is a great intro into mountain climbing. Safety harnesses and installed iron bars makes accessing high alpine terrain easier and safer for those with little experience. Suitable for beginners; no experience is required.
#10 CAMP Brand Goods Clothing
Camp Brand Goods is a local company dedicated to providing high quality clothing for fellow outdoor enthusiasts. With shirts and sweaters available for men, women, and children, there’s something for everyone! Ofcourse, you can shop online, but we recommend popping in the Livery Shop to find the perfect item; an incredibly cool shop located in Inglewood (seriously).
#11 Calgary Climbing Centre Passes
Gift someone with the opportunity to test their strength and climbing skills; a perfect way to practice before heading out to the mountains! Calgary Climbing Centre currently has 6 locations and even offers outdoor classes in Banff, Bow Valley and Kananaskis.
If the outdoor enthusiast in your life doesn’t have a headlamp yet, you should definitely consider this as a top pick! Headlamps are so much more efficient than flashlights as they allow one to explore with both hands free.
#13 Traction Devices or Crampons
Traction devices and crampons allow one to explore more in winter or likewise conditions. Essential for secure snow and ice travel, these are designed for activities ranging from trail walks to ice climbing.
#15 Collapsible Bowl
Collapsible bowls are a fantastic addition to anyone’s outdoor collection. Ofcourse, they’re super compact and make packing your cooking gear a whole lot easier, but they also hold a sufficient amount of food. Bonus: they’re also easy super to keep clean!
#16 Smart Watch
Smart Watches can do more than count your steps! Depending on which model you choose, track and monitor things such as heart rate, sleep, altitude and speed. Some are even equipped with GPS and navigation! Pop into a store today to chat about which smart watch is best for you; they range from the low 100’s up to the thousands; it truly depends what you’re looking for!
The range of use for knives is pretty straight forward! And, in the backcountry, it’s especially useful to have one on hand! The outdoor enthusiast in your life is sure to appreciate a good quality knife they might not have had the chance to treat themselves to.
#18 Helinox Chair
A compact and lightweight luxury to bring along on backpacking trips and trips alike! When you pull this up around the fire, everyone else will wish they had one of these too!
#19 Universal Life Straw
Life Straw takes the hassle out of purifying personal drinking water – no pumping or heating required! LifeStraw water bottles are available, but there’s actually a universal LifeStraw adaptor kit available – meaning you can use your own favourite water bottle and attach this baby on! Simply screw on the adaptor and drink away! Available at MEC, Atmosphere and various outdoor retailers.
A UV light purifier may not be the best for filtering particles out of water, but they sure kill harmful bacteria! (And hey, a little dirt won’t hurt you!) SteriPens are even effective in foreign environments (other countries) where the bacteria makes the water bad to drink. Plus, they’re handy when it comes to purifying more than water in your personal drinking bottle. FYI: Depending on the amount of water, it only takes 30-60 seconds! If you’re interested in saving some $$, Gear Trade offers SteriPens at competitive prices. Alternatively, they are ofcourse available at MEC too!
#21 SAT Phone
SAT phones are crucial in remote emergency situations. It’s an item you hope you wont ever have to use, but one you will be so thankful for having if you do. SAT phones are loaded with prepaid cards that provide you with connection to emergency services where data and cell phone service is extremely low or nonexistent. (But remember, use is intended for serious emergencies ONLY)
#22 Travel Towel
Both lightweight and quick drying, a travel towel has so many uses in outdoor adventure. Great for drying off after a dip into a lake, or even drying off your four legged friends before they get into your tent!
#23 Burgundy Oak Adirondack Chair
The perfect chair to lounge out on your deck in. Both a local, sustainable and recycled product (they’re made from used wine barrels), this chair is super comfortable, stylish and high quality. The easiest way to get your hands on one of these is buy one directly from Burgundy Oak’s website.
The beauty of a multitool lies right in its name: multi. Having one tool with multiple purposes is super beneficial for on the go. Beyond convenience, bringing a multitool on adventures helps one be more prepared for unexpected situations that may require its use!
Snowshoes are a perfect excuse to get out in the snow! Great on trails, but versatile for use in the city too, adding these to someone’s outdoor gear collection won’t be a waste! Feel free to get yourself a pair too so you and your friend or family member can get out together!