Five Faves Camping Edition – 8/3/18
We went hiking three times in July, so I wanted to share some of my favorite outdoors gear. We started out pretty easy (Rattlesnake Ridge) where we only brought a water bottle. A couple weeks later we hiked Mt. Ellinor on the Olympic Peninsula which is a rather difficult day hike (these poles were SO helpful). July culminated with a 2-day backpacking trip in North Cascades National Park (specifically, Cascade Pass and Sahalee Glacier). This gear is what I have found to be the best “crossover gear” for someone who enjoys car camping, occasionally goes backpacking, and regularly hikes. That is to say, you could find a lighter sleeping pad for backpacking or a better stove for car camping, but I wanted something that would work well for either.
This has been my hiking reservoir for a few years and I love it. It has a convenient large mouth opening making it easy to fill and clean. I haven’t had any issues with leaking — the top Ziploc-esque seal is tight and the hose is well constructed.
This cookset has been great for both backpacking and car camping. The stove is a little more versatile than a JetBoil (which only boils water/cooks soups). This stove allows us to use a small pan to make grilled cheese sandwiches or scrambled eggs while car camping. However, the pot alone boils water quickly for freeze dried meals or hot cocoa! The only thing I don’t love about the cookset is the cutlery — it works fine, but I spent a couple dollars on a sturdier all-in-one eating utensil.
Make sure to go to REI for fuel (you can’t order fuel on the internet) and don’t leave it on the car before heading into the backcountry for two days…
You would have thought I was making PQ buy gold plated camping forks when I forced him to buy a sleeping pad — he thought it was *that* unnecessary. After one night, he admitted he slept better than he ever had in a tent. I didn’t think I would love the AirRails along the sides as much as I do, and I am very pleased with this sleeping pad.
I love this tent because it’s just larger than a two-person tent (hence, 2.5). It sleeps two, with room for a dog or a couple backpacks at your feet. I appreciate the ability to sit up, change clothes, etc. It’s also large enough for 3-4 people to play cards together comfortably. The body of the tent sets up quickly without stakes and is largely mesh (perfect to see the stars in nice weather).
The exact sleeping bag I have (Women’s Heratio 32) is no longer available, but the Ratio 32 from Mountain Hardwear looks to be the newest model. It’s warm enough for anything I’ll be camping in and packs down easily to fit in the bottom of my pack. I love the light green color I was able to find, but this gray probably hides dirt better!