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
Lightweight—at a cost. If you look at my profile, you’ll see that my three reviews prior to this one have all been 5 stars. You might assume that I lack objectivity in reviewing the things that I purchase. Well, in my old age I’ve learned to research more carefully than I had in the past. I thought I’d done my diligence before purchasing this L.L. Bean Microlight FS 2 tent. I liked that it was very versatile in the various configurations for ventilating the tent. One could spend comfortable… Full review
Quality build and everything fits inside, including 8-ounce fuel canister. I bought this stove to replace my JetBoil in which first the piezo igniter quit, and then the burner element disintegrated and died during my 2018 bicycle tour. I wanted a stove that would hold up under extreme conditions and pack up tight and compact for travel inside my bicycle panniers. The Camp Chef Stryker 100 sure looked like a winner as I was viewing it on the Amazon website. For comparison purposes, I’ve included… Full review
Durable, warm, relatively lightweight, very comfortable mummy, small pack size, all-around good summer bag. I have and regularly use four mid '80s era (red label) The North Face Light Rider down sleeping bags. I've had them for about 25 years. They are still going strong. They're warm to just slightly below their rated 35°F, and pack down to a respectable 6" x 15". They weigh in at 1 Lb. 12 ozs. While not "ultra light" they're still light enough to be useful. While 550 down is considered… Full review
TENT DESIGN UPDATED IN 2017 Tough weather protection for a three-season tent. I ordered and received my Hilleberg Anjan 2 in early 2018, to complete the last half of my bicycle tour from Phoenix back to Wisconsin. The tent was redesigned in 2017 I believe, to address the rain protection issues that were described in the previous review. The corners of the outer tent now extend to the ground, while still offering ventilation all the way round via catenary design. I ordered the tent to give my Hilleberg… Full review
Lightweight, a fantastic chopper and splitter...much better and lighter than a large Bowie-style knife for bushcrafting and camping chores. A joy to use. This is a beautifully designed and balanced lightweight hand axe for the hiker, back country camper, and bushcrafter. You can certainly build an expedient shelter, you can fell, limb, buck, split, and carve trees that are 5-inches in diameter or less fairly readily. You can use it to skin, clean, and butcher small game. Carrying this and a small… Full review
A decent light axe for minor felling, chopping, and splitting...but doesn't compare to a good HB or GB. I bought one of these a few years ago, and have used it mostly around the house. I've found it's best for light limbing and felling, but the design of the blade is such that it really is a chopper, not a splitter. I'm surprised at how much better a smaller, lighter Granfors Bruk axe is at both felling and splitting. Buy it if you want a fairly inexpensive and durable decent axe for occasional… Full review
These older NF VE tents are brutal beasts. The newer models, as I have reconditioned two, are not made with the same quality. Just picked up a smelly VE24 today. No poles, but I have plenty of parts poles to make a set. Needs some patching to the pole sleeves, some floor sealer, and she's ready for another 10 years. I have the first of the original VE25's and it's my go-to tent 85 percent of the time when I motorcycle or winter camp. Can't stand up in it, but plenty of headroom for sitting in a… Full review