To master the art of avoiding portages I have taken up the art of whitewater paddling. Year after year I have tried to bring less, traveling lighter and living more simply. However, in recent years, after working with many experienced outdoor guides I have developed a list of once luxury, now essential packing items. Here they are:
1. Camp pillow (Therm-a-rest Compressible Pillow)
I have tried it all; scrunching up a sweater, stuffing clothes into a pillowcase, placing things under my therma-rest, but nothing compares to the comfort of an actual pillow.
2. Hammock (Woods backpacker Hammock)
The ultimate in camping luxury. Nothing beats setting up camp and noticing two perfectly spaced trees right by the water. Nap time.
3. Coffee maker (GSI Java Press 30 oz)
Aeropress, French press or percolator…as long as there’s coffee! The GSI Java Press is an easy and efficient press. It comes with a warmth capturing sleeve and coffee is ready in as a little as 5 minutes.
4. Lantern (Hybrid Solar Lantern)
I recently invested in a solar powered lantern and couldn’t be happier. It is the perfect tent buddy whether you are afraid of the dark, love playing cards at night or find lighting as important as I do, this lantern is perfect and long-lasting.
5. Watercolor set (Winsor & Newton watercolor pan sets)
Intimidating to some, but art truly is relaxing and doesn’t judge. Watercolor is a camping and user friendly tool as there are compact sets that allow you to toss it in your backpack or boat and go! (If that is too much, a camera works great too!)
6. Fishing rod (Okuma Spinning Travel Kit)
Whether you play it simple with a jig and worm or step it up a notch with a tackle box, a fishing set-up is always a great choice!
7. Binoculars (Bushnell Off Trail 8×25 Binoculars)
In a boat or up a hike, binoculars allow you to leave the wildlife alone, while still getting an up-close look!
8. Baby wipes (Any will do!)
No sink, missed a day swimming? No worries.
9. Camp chair (Helinox Ground Chair)
You can’t deny it, when you sit down by a fire and someone pulls out their collapsible camp chair the ground feels just a little bit harder. They are great when the ground is wet, or when you back is sore. The helinox is a stable and durable option.
10. Dutch oven (GSI Hard Anodized Dutch Oven)
Dutch ovens are the ultimate cooking buddy. They make unbelievable cinnamon buns, bake your fish to perfection and make the cheese on your pizza melt.
The outdoors can be about roughing it, but it can also be a time to relax and treat yourself. So go on, bake some cinnamon rolls, press that coffee and hop in your hammock!
These items can be found at a variety of stores including: MEC, Canadian Tire, REI, Bass Pro Shop, Sail, Cabela’s etc.
Looking for an adventure to try out your new piece of gear? Wilderness North offers fully-outfitted adventures into the Canadian Wilderness for folks of all ages. Find out more.