20 Items to Add to Your Outdoor Collection

Outdoor gear can be costly, so a rule of thumb is to buy items slowly and invest only in what you need. Here are 20 Items to Add to Your Outdoor Collection. These items have made it easier to navigate the outdoors and have been great for certain seasons. They also provide ideas for you to add to your collection at some point.

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Outdoor Collection 

Outdoor gear and apparel can be purchased from REI, Columbia, DICK’S, Big 5, and Amazon, to name a few. The best time to shop in most of these locations is when they have sales, which is an excellent time to stock up on new items to add to your collection. If you’re a member of some of the stores, take advantage of the discounts and coupons they send out; they will help save you money in the long run!

20 Items to Add to Your Outdoor Collection:

1. Camping Lights

Camping lights are a fun way to create a nice, comfortable ambiance outdoors. They are great for providing light when it gets dark in the evening, and you can use these camping lights in your tent, inside your car, or decorate your camping spot outside. It would be best to have a good power bank to connect them to; they last long hours and come in white or multicolor; there are also battery-operated camping lights.

Camping lights

2. Seat Pad

The Nemo Seat Pad is made from recycled materials; it provides a nice layer of comfort when you want to sit down outside and not worry about sitting on a rock or the ground. This pad is lightweight for camping trips; I took it backpacking, but it might be too much for someone wanting to carry less weight. If you prefer comfort when sitting, this is perfect for you!

3. First Aid Kit

A first aid kit is one of the most important things you can add to your outdoor collection. I carry one in my backpack and keep another in the car just in case I need to stock up. Your kit may include different items; here are some suggested items I keep in mine: bandaids, tums, Pepto tablets, cramp medicine, pain medication, alcohol wipes, and even Dramamine for road trips in case of motion sickness.

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4. Hammock

A fun item to add to your collection is a hammock. I highly recommend having one because it adds another layer of comfort outdoors. Most hammocks are easy to use; you need to find two stable tree trunks to put them in between; if the tree trunk is large, it is better so the hammock is more stable. The ENO hammocks are durable and come in different colors; the hammock fits inside a small bag, making it easy to put away during outdoor trips.


5. Lantern

Having good lighting in the wilderness when it gets dark goes a long way! Whether it’s for inside your tent when you are looking for something or just trying to set something up at night before bed. In my opinion, a good lantern with bright to dim settings is good. A lantern I suggest getting is the Black Diamond Moji + Lantern light; it is lightweight and has different color settings.

6. Trekking Poles

Not everyone is a fan of trekking poles, but they are suitable for snowshoeing adventures and come in handy for long treks with a bit more incline. Trekking poles help support the knees, give a good balance, and assist in navigating through the snow. The Cascade Mountain, Tech Trekking Poles, are suitable for beginners. They also come with all the accessories you need for different terrains, which include snow baskets, sand/mud baskets, rubber tips, a trekking pole clip to hold the poles together, and a carry bag that holds everything together in one place.

Trekking poles

7. Hydration Backpack

A hydration pack is one of those items you should always have on your list if you spend a lot of time outdoors. Gone are the days when you hike with a water bottle at hand throughout your journey, and although it is still common, the best place to keep your water supply is on your back, where you don’t have to worry about carrying anything and can be hands-free. Hydration packs are convenient, and the water bladder typically holds about  2 liters of water; most packs are insulated, so it helps keep your water cold during your journey.

Castle Rock State Park

8. Gaiters

Gaiters are a great addition to your outdoor collection; they protect your legs during snowshoeing, in wet conditions, and on muddy trails. The fabric on gaiters is waterproof and will keep your legs warm throughout your trek. I recommend having a pair because they can be handy. I also prefer using them when hiking in the rain to keep my legs and shoes from wetting.


9. Handheld Fan

A handheld fan can come in handy during the hot summer months. Fans are great to use inside your tent, on a hike, or simply lying outdoors on a hot day. Even if a handheld device doesn’t interest you, a portable mini fan could be helpful inside the tent; you can clip the fan with the hanging hook it comes with, and you’ll be set to go!

10. Whistles

In California, you may encounter bears, and something as small as a whistle can go a long way to protect you. Not only are they great for making noise, but in general, a whistle can save your life if you find yourself in a sticky situation and need someone to find you.

Note: Many hydration packs and outdoor backpacks have a whistle on the top strap. Check your current pack because you never know when you will need it.


11. Tent

One of the top outdoor gear items you could have is a tent. The tent size you purchase will depend on your needs, the type of adventurer you are, and if it is for just yourself or a small family. If you are looking for a good family tent, I suggest the Coleman Sundome Camping Tent, and for single tents, check Big Agnes or REI.


12. Multi-Tool

A multi-tool is a valuable item; many have a fire starter, a knife, a bottle opener, and a screwdriver, to name a few. There are many different multi-tools out there, but I think it is essential to have one because it has many uses for different situations, and being prepared outdoors is vital.

13. Mosquito Net

Mosquitos can be a pain to deal with, and if you are anything like me and are allergic to them, you know keeping them away is a priority. A mosquito net will keep those pesky little insects from biting your face. You may need one in the mountains during the spring and summer seasons, so it is always good to have one as a part of your outdoor collection.

Mosquito net

Everyday Hiking Tools

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14. Crampons

Crampons are a great winter item to have for ice and snow. If you love the outdoors and want to keep exploring even during the cooler seasons, crampons are suitable to carry with you in case you are in an area that requires them. Crampons are easy to put over your boots and small to carry around in your bag.

Note: Crampons and snowshoes are two different items – crampons are mainly used to give you much-increased traction on hard snow and ice. Snowshoes are for deep, soft, and fresh snow.


15. Daypack

A daypack is perfect for short trips. You can fit a good amount inside; most are lightweight. My favorite backpacks are from REI, Patagonia, and Arc’teryx, but there are numerous brands you can purchase from. Most of them fit a hydration pack and have a lot of pockets for storage and snacks on short hikes.

Sierra Nevada

16. Waterproof Jacket

Waterproof jackets are essential to have in your outdoor apparel collection. They are great to wear in rain and snow conditions; they are lightweight, easy to pack, and keep you dry outdoors. I have an REI rain jacket, which has come a long way in protecting me from wet conditions during my adventures. Still, Columbia Sportswear and Amazon have a variety of waterproof jackets that are much more affordable.


17. Sleeping Pad

A sleeping pad is one camping item that provides the comfort you need when sleeping in the wilderness. Sleeping outdoors presents challenges, but if you have a pad as a cushion layer underneath, it can make a difference. Most sleeping pads are easy to use; just a little air, and you are set.

18. Sleeping Bag

Sleeping bags are one of the most popular items to have for the outdoors. There are many sleeping bags to choose from, and deciding which is best can be a little overwhelming. During the warmer seasons, you don’t want to get one that will create too much heat. In the cooler months, you will want precisely that, so be selective in what you buy, especially since sleeping bags are one of the pricier items you will have in your outdoor collection. To find the right sleeping bag temperature, check out this resource. Here are some things to consider when buying one.

  • Summer/low-elevation sleeping bags: 32°F and above.
  • 3-season sleeping bags: 20 to 32°F.
  • Cold-weather/winter sleeping bags: 20°F and below.

19. Birdie Device

The Birdie device is a product I recommend for solo adventurers who hike and backpack and for women who travel alone. Birdie is a safety alarm; when the trigger is pulled, it sets a loud alarm and flashing strobe light designed to deter an attack. The device comes in many colors, is small to carry, and comes with a brass key chain.

Birdie device

20. Pepper Spray/Stun Gun

You never know what situation you may encounter outdoors, especially those unrelated to nature or animals. I think it is essential for most women to have pepper spray or a stun gun with them for protection. I wanted to include this last item because it can go a long way if needed. Ensure you know how to use the devices beforehand and that they are always locked so nothing goes off accidentally.

Continue reading [Hiking Boots for Women] to understand which hiking boots brands are out there and know more about which ones are good for purchase.

Your Thoughts: What is your favorite outdoor gear?

This post was about 20 Items to Add to Your Outdoor Collection. Do you have a piece of gear you absolutely need? Is there an item on your list that you don’t currently own? Share a comment below and let me know your thoughts on the type of gear you use for hiking and camping.

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