Hiking and Camping Gear
Find the best hiking, backpacking, and camping gear and outdoor essentials right here. We’ve got your ultimate gear list covered for your next day, weekend, or thru-hike trip, whether you're hitting the backcountry or the local frontcountry.
See our top hike and camp gear picks, including price comparisons, in any outdoor product category: backpacks to tents, sleeping bags to pads, camp stoves to cookware and food, knives to multi-tools, lights to navigation and electronics, trekking poles to water treatment, even dog gear.
Browse thousands of independent equipment reviews and ratings by real hikers, backpackers, alpinists, and paddlers, to select appropriate, dependable, field-tested gear for your next adventure.
10 Essentials for Backcountry Travel
While a comprehensive hiking, backpacking, or camping gear list depends on many factors (season, climate, terrain, distance, activities, and personal preference), certain outdoor gear is essential whether you’re exploring the trails in your local woods or heading off on an extended backcountry climb or ski.
Wherever you're going, always bring appropriate hiking and outdoor gear for each of the 10 Essentials:
- Sun protection
- Insulation (extra clothing)
- Illumination (lights)
- First-aid supplies
- Fire (starters)
- Repair kit and tools
- Nutrition (extra food)
- Hydration (extra water)
- Emergency shelter
Recent Hiking/Camping Product Reviews
ITP A3 EOS AAA Flashlight
Ultralight half ounce AAA Flashlight 96 Lumens. This is one of the worlds smallest and brightest mini flashlights. 2.5 inches long 11 grams, (0.4 ounces) Uses 1 AAA battery High 96 Lumens (55 min), Med 22 Lumens (4 hrs), Low 1.8 Lumens (50 hrs) To lend you some perspective, a big D-cell Maglite only puts out 27 lumens, which is roughly the ITP's medium setting. The low setting (firefly) is perfect for times when you don't want to disturb anyone, such as packing up early at a shelter,… Full review
Black Diamond Gizmo
Very light weight and affordable. If you like the K.I.S.S. method (keep it simple stupid), this is a great pick for a headlamp This time of year it seems essential to have a headlamp to run after work. It's dark at 430 and that's when I get out there. The other night I was on my jog and felt something bounce off my head, after looking around there was nothing to be seen. Then again it happened... Suddenly I notice it's pitch black and I'm not really sure where my feet are landing. Apparantly my… Full review
Deuter Pace 36
The Pace 36 is a weight-shaving daypack with a very light frame and wide mesh hip belt. I applaud Deuter for figuring out how to make a bag this light that is also quite comfortable. The pockets and features are things people can actually use; I would take this along as a winter day/summit bag. The Pace 36 can carry a surprising amount of weight comfortably, but it would not be my choice for consistently carrying more than 30 pounds on a regular basis. The simplicity that helps make this so easy… Full review
Marmot Nusku 2P
This Nusku 2 has become my most used tent. It packs small enough for use on a motorcycle or tobaggan and can be relied on in any weather. I was looking for a freestanding four season tent that had a smaller pitch than my Andromeda 2. I settled on the Marmot Nusku 2 based on previous experience with Marmot equipment and the design specs for the tent. I have used the tent in spring, summer, fall and winter and have found it to be a faithful addition to my equipment choices. It pitches quickly and… Full review
Friendly Swede Paracord Bracelet
Officially called "The Friendly Swede Adjustable Premium Paracord Bracelet with Fire Starter and Sharp Eye Knife," this paracord bracelet includes a useful emergency fire steel and a cutting implement that doubles as a fire steel striker in addition to about 17 ft/5.18 m of paracord. Quality components make this a good survival-style bracelet for anyone who doesn't mind the bulk of this hefty bracelet—campers, hunters, or anyone who wishes to be prepared for the unexpected. What It Is Paracord… Full review
SOL Escape Bivvy
A mylar blanket does a better job of reflecting heat. I've tested this bivy in temps from the 40s down into the teens. Every time I ended up colder than when I didn't use it at all. Instead of reflecting heat back to me, the Escape Bivvy seemed to conduct heat away from my body like a heat sink. I contacted customer service and their idea was that the bivy was compressing the insulation in my mummy bag. That sounded like a good theory since it doesn't offer much room with a sleeping bag inside. Full review
Kelty Men's SB 20
Testing the SB20 down to 13 degrees. After an exhaustive search for a shoulder season bag, I stumbled across the SB20 on sale and couldn't pass it up. I had looked at the Montbell bags, which were heavier and not as warm. The Western Mountaineering Alpinlite was 2 oz lighter, but was more than double the price at $540. Not a good price per ounce saved in my opinion. I knew that Kelty made bombproof backpacks, but I've never considered one of their bags, because they've always been too heavy. Full review