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71+ Ultimate Gift Ideas For Hikers and Backpackers in 2024

a girl with a hiking backpack in front of an alpine lake

Hikers and backpackers often have a lot of their own gear, but many times they don’t have all the necessary gear they need or can use an updated version of what they have. In this guide we will provide you with the ultimate list of gift ideas for hikers and backpackers. 

I remember when I first started hiking, my backpack didn’t fit properly to my body type and it would strangle my shoulders. I would try to carry only the essentials and nothing more. But once I updated to a women’s backpack that fit me, I could pack the bag with everything I needed and it still felt relatively light! 

Hiking is a cheap way to explore but the gear can add up quickly if you buy high quality gear. Here are some great gifts for hikers and backpackers. 

This post may contain affiliate links. Disclosure policy.

Using A Web Browser Extension When Buying Gifts for Hikers or Backpackers Online

I quickly want to mention a brilliant way to save money this holiday season. And that is with a web browser extension. These companies run in the background while you are shopping and try to find you discounts, coupon codes, or cash back opportunities on the products you are already planning to purchase. It’s literally a win-win.

Here are a few browser extensions I always have running on my computer and has saved me hundreds of dollars over the years. 

Day Pack

a girl pulling hiking snacks from her backpack

Let’s start off with the #1 item a hiker or backpacker needs, a backpack. For hikers, they will need a much lighter pack, usually ranging from 10-30 Liters. A backpacking pack usually ranges from 35-100+ Liters depending on the length of the trip.  

Jake’s and my personal favorite Day Packs are the Gregory Maya (Women’s) & Miko (Men’s). There is a separate sleeve for a hydration bladder, a large pouch, a small sunglass/snack pouch, two water bottle side pockets, a large mesh pocket in front, and many other useful features. We think the perfect size is 25 L, but it does come in smaller sizes. 

For Backpacking Packs we suggest the Osprey Eja (Women’s) & Exos (Men’s). This is a minimalist style backpack that is designed for ultra-lightweight backpackers with the pack weight being under 3 lbs. For an average backpacker, a 50-65 Liter pack will be adequate for anything from a comfortable overnight trip to multi-day trips. 

Backpack Rain Cover

REI Rain Cover

You will definitely want a way to keep your backpack dry so the gear inside doesn’t get wet. The REI Co-op Duck’s Back Rain Cover comes in all different sizes and easily stretches over your pack to keep everything inside dry until you get to your end destination. Check the volume tech spec for the appropriate rain cover size. 

Extra small usually fits most day packs, but the various other sizes depending on the backpacking packs liter capacity.

Merino Wool Clothing

a man wearing Merino Wool on the beach posing like a model, showing an eco-friendly gift idea for hikers and backpackers

Merino Wool is one of the best eco-friendly gift ideas for hikers and backpackers. The material of merino wool is odor-resistant, breathable, and keeps you cool in the hot sun.

Hikers and backpackers can wear it multiple days in a row and not have to worry about the smell. Also by wearing merino wool, it reduces the amount of clothing you have to carry along on a trip. 

We have worked together with Icebreaker on a 7-day challenge wearing their clothing every day for 7 days straight without washing it. After 7 days, the clothing was surprisingly not smelly! We feel they have super high-quality clothing.

Unlike synthetic clothing, merino wool helps reduce the impact of plastic microfibers on the planet. So not only does merino wool keep a hiker or backpacker comfortable on a trail, but it is also eco-friendly! You can now buy merino wool in shirts, pants, socks, underwear, neck buffs etc.

Our favorite brand for merino wool is Icebreaker, Unbound Merino, Smartwool & IsoBaa. They offer a variety of different styles of clothing, from working out, to business casual attire, and even underwear. They now also have a women’s line at Unbound Merino.


LifeStraw Peak Water Filter Straw | REI Co-op

A LifeStraw can be a super helpful gift idea for hikers and backpackers that can literally save their life out on the trail. For safety precautions, it is always a good idea to carry an alternative way to get clean water when hiking. Accidents happen and sometimes you are on a trail longer than anticipated or you didn’t pack enough water on a super-exposed hike.

LifeStraw is a portable water filter that can get you safe drinking water from nearly any water source out on the trail. (For example, if you are out in the desert where water is limited, you might find a puddle to safely filter clean drinking water).

A Lifestraw is the perfect present for hikers to just throw in their backpacks when hiking or backpacking because it is lightweight and could save their life!

Platypus Gravity Works

Platypus GravityWorks Water Filter 4 Liter Filter

For backpackers, they may want a larger water filtration system. The Platypus Gravity works is our go to water filter when backpacking. It’s super easy to use and filters water super fast. You can read more in-depth details in our Platypus gear review.

Neck Buff

a girl wearing a neck buff at the Bonneville salt flats showing a great gift idea for hikers and backpackers

The perfect item to keep you cool or warm on a hike is a neck buff because it has multiple uses! You can dunk a neck buff in water to cool you down when the sun is beating on you and also to protect you from the sun. Or if it is chilly, a midweight neck buff will act as a scarf to keep you warm.

We also use them for covering our noses when we use drop toilets or porta potties.


a woman wearing chacos crossing a log in a river

Chaco’s are the ultimate adventure sandal and one of the best gift ideas for hikers and backpackers. These sandals are great for hot weather, river hikes or to just wear around the campsite.

They hold a sturdy grip on wet rocks and stay tight on your feet making them the perfect hiking sandal. Chaco has several different models, depending on your needs and dozens of straps designs.

There are tons of different styles of Chaco’s, so be sure to find the right sandal type for you.


a girl laying in a hammock with an apline lake in the distance, showing one of the best gift ideas for hikers and backpackers

Our favorite activity to do once we reach our hiking destination is to set up a hammock and enjoy the view! There is nothing quite like putting your feet up after climbing up a mountain and taking a rest before climbing down. Or some backpackers are making the switch to hammock camping, instead of traditional tent camping.


Photo by Egor Myznik on Unsplash

There are many trails out there that don’t have a defined path or are hard to follow. For those hikes it is always a good idea to have a GPS in hand. It can be a good idea to have a GPS on you at all times if you are a hiker or backpacker of any level, especially for solo hikers.

Just like most technology gadgets, there can be a wide range of different products.

The Garmin InReach Mini is a popular choice amongst avid hikers. It uses satellites to communicate in case of an emergency. You use the device to call 911 and it can help send a GPS location for where you are hiking. And of course, it can help you if you are lost out on a trail. Plus you can also message loved ones when out of cell-signal.

On the more extreme side, hikers or backpackers might go with the Garmin GPSMAP 66i which comes with a pretty hefty price tag.

Rain Pants

Rain should never stop your favorite hiker from going on an adventure. I know it sure has stopped Jake and I, several times. But if you have the appropriate attire, then you should be all set to have a successful hiking adventure.

These REI Rainer Rain pants are the perfect piece of rain gear to help keep you dry out on the trail. Pair this with a nice rain jacket, backpack rain cover (listed earlier), and waterproof shoes.

Lightweight Daypack

Matador Freefly 16 packed into its stuff sack

Backpacking with a heavy pack can become straining, so it is always nice to set the pack down at camp and venture on with a light daypack. We love our lightweight Matador backpack and feel it is a quality backpack. This bag is waterproof, puncture-resistant, and has breathable shoulder straps. It’s perfect for taking those little excursions away from camp.

Matador Pocket Blanket

a couple sitting on the Matador pocket blanket which is one of the best gift ideas for hikers and backpackers

Continueing on with another quality made Matador product is the Matador pocket blanket. Once you get up to the top of a mountain or to a beautiful destination after a long hike, there sometimes isn’t a good place to plop down without getting dirty or wet.

Therefore it can sometimes be helpful to have an outdoor blanket to use and sit to enjoy a snack and take in the beautiful view. (Also a great companion at parks, beaches, and concerts).

This will be the perfect surprise gift idea for hikers and backpackers. Personally, I wish I went with the large model especially because I tend to share with Jake.

This Matador Pocket Blanket can also make a great stocking stuffer!

a Matador pocket blanket in the palm of a hand showing its small size and how its a great gift idea for hikers and backpackers

Hiking Box Subscription

a sample of what comes in a Battlbox monthly subscription

One of the best gift ideas for hikers and backpackers is a monthly subscription for getting the latest hiking gear and snacks. Some popular hiking and backpacking subscription boxes are Nomadik, Battlbox, Hiker Crate, Wild Women Box, Graze, etc.

These boxes are subscriptions that offer unique hiking or backpacking gear that will keep you thriving on the trail. There will often be good hiking snacks, the latest gear, and products that every hiker can use on any adventure.

Water Bladder

Camelbak Crux 2L

A must-have item for an avid hiker is a water bladder. It keeps you hydrated much better out on the trail than a traditional water bottle. My personal favorite water hydration pack is the Camelbak Crux 2 Liter. It’s newly designed to provide a higher flow of water and a new bite valve that’s prevents leaks whether it’s locked or not.

Camelbak Cleaner

And of course you need some way to adequately clean the water reservoir. These can be a breeding ground for bacteria growth, so you want to be able to clean these water bladders thoroughly. So a Camelbak cleaning kit can be one of the most perfect gift ideas for hikers and backpackers. It comes with cleaning tabs to really deep clean the reservoir.

Bon Dry

Bon Dry Hydration Dryer

Additionally, one more item to make sure you have a dry water bladder when stowing it away between hikes is a Bon Dry. After a hike, you can empty an leftover water and place this item inside the bladder to thoroughly dry the reservoir. Trust me, it can be hard to get all the water out of these bladders.

Solar Powered Battery Charger

the solar panels that charge a sunjack charger

When hiking or backpacking on a long trail, it can be a good idea to have a cell phone in case of emergencies. But if that cell phone dies then it is no good. Therefore having a solar charger is a great gift idea for hikers and backpackers.

a sunjack charger charging a cell phone which is one of the best gift ideas for hikers and backpackers

We have a large Sunjack Solar Panel with 2 chargers and absolutely love it! It can especially be nice for long backpacking trips, so you can charge phones, camera batteries or headlamps. But, carrying a solar charger can be heavy.

So when we go on shorter backpacking trips or hikes we only bring a single Sunjack Charger. But be sure to have it charged up before hiking if you don’t plan to bring the additional solar panel with you.

Backpacking Stove

a backpacking campstove sitting outside a tent with a mountain in the distance

After hiking for miles with a heavy backpack, there is nothing better than a warm cooked meal for dinner. The most popular campstove is a Jetboil which is lightweight yet practical for backpackers. 

Another popular backpacking campstove is the MSR Pocket Rocket. This backpacking campstove is ultralight weighing only 2.6 ounces.

Ceramic Pot

While the jetboil comes with a pot to boil water, the MSR Pocket Rocket does not. So a non-stick, lightweight ceramic pot is the perfect companion.

Inflatable Pillow

sea to summit inflatable pillow, which makes a great gift for hikers and backpackers

An inflatable pillow can make or break a good nights sleep. I’ve tried just using a stuff sack with clothes, and it can be lumpy, or maybe so cold that I have all my layers on. So a lightweight backpacking pillow is the perfect item every backpacker needs.

Pillows back down rather small, so this can also double as a great stocking stuffer idea for hikers and backpackers.

Hydroflask Water Bottle

hydroflask bottle sitting on a rock with a lake and mountain in the background, offering a gift idea for hikers

I (Emily here) am obsessed with Hydroflask, maybe a little too much! Hydroflasks are vacuum sealed, stainless steel containers that are great for keeping your drinks cold for multiple days or hot for multiple hours depending on the goal.

Hyrdoflasks are not only great gift ideas for hikers or backpackers, but for anyone that wants to reduce single-use plastic! Plus there is

Another popular water bottle that I use is the Larq Water Bottle. It a self-cleaning bottle that kills 99.99% bacteria growth by using a UV light.

Backpacking Shower

Sea to Summit Pocket Shower

When backpacking, you are working extra hard because you are carrying 30+ lbs of extra weight on your back. So if you are backpacking around water, than a pocket shower is the perfect item to have a quick clean up.

The shower just attached to a tree or high hanging object and uses gravity to flow water from the spigot. This again is another great idea for a stocking gift.

Microfiber Lightweight Towel

Microfiber Lightweight Towel
Microfiber Lightweight Towel

The perfect towel for backpackers is a lightweight microfiber towel. It folds down very small and weighs next to nothing. Plus it dries very quick, which can especially be nice so you aren’t carrying extra water weight from a wet towel.

Biodegradable Shampoo/Conditioner

a bottle of seat to summit shampoo with conditioner which is a great gift idea for backpackers

Now that you have the portable shower and lightweight towel, you need a product that will get you clean. But you shouldn’t just use any shampoo or conditioner because you are showering outside, and the product is landing on the ground.

Therefore, having biodegradable shampoo and conditioner is important so you don’t contaminate the surrounding water sources. Many shampoos and conditioners have harmful chemicals that shouldn’t be near water sources.

Stuff Sacks/Drybag

Sea to summit Stuff Sacks

The easiest way to organize your belongings when backpacking is by using stuff sacks. Because trust me, it’s easier than you think to lose things inside your backpack. And you don’t want to have to take everything out, because it can be tough to fit it all back in again.

Dry Bag

Sea to Summit Big River Dry Bag - 35 L | REI Co-op

Also, if you often hike through or near water, having a drybag is super helpful. For backpackers, I suggest a Larger drybag so it’s big enough for a sleeping bag and one pair of dry clothes.

For a hiker, smaller drybag should suffice, to fit your valuables. It provides a sense of security so your belongings don’t accidentally get wet along the hike. 

National Parks Pass

a guy holding a National Parks Pass with a shocked face, showing a great gift idea for hikers and backpackers

National parks are top destinations for avid hikers and backpackers. The National Parks Pass is a great value if you visit more than 2+ parks a year. The annual pass costs $80 and then gets you into all national parks, national forests, and national recreation areas.

Most park entrance fees are around $30, so it’s a killer deal and one of the most amazing gift ideas for hikers and backpackers.

Lightweight Shovel

Vargo Titanium Dig Dig Tool

A backpacking shovel has multiple purposes when hiking or backpacking. It can sometimes be tough to find a flat spot for a tent when backpacking and you have to dig up a rock or uneven spot.

And for going #2, you will need a lightweight shovel to dig a proper hole. Cat holes need to be 6-8 inches deep (no shallower or deeper). And when you gotta go sometimes you don’t have time to dig a hole with a wimpy stick. Therefore, having a lightweight trowel is the perfect gift for hikers and backpackers.


a guy in the middle of a snowy path with yaktrax which is a gift idea for hikers and backpackers

Hiking and backpacking is most popular when the weather is warmer. But with Yaktrax, the winter weather can’t stop you! Hiking in the winter requires a little extra work, but if you have Yaktrax or good footwear for the snow, you will be unstoppable out on the trail.

For hiking on unpaved trails or in deeper snow, snowshoes might be a better choice of footwear.


a travel bottle of sunscreen which is a great gift idea for hikers and backpackers

Sunscreen is important while hiking or backpacking to protect your skin. You are out in nature where the sun is heavily exposed. Hikers and backpackers should always carry a small travel bottle of sunscreen to protect themselves from the sun. This can also make a great stocking suffer item.

Hiking Poles

Emily trying out the women's line with her hiking poles for Unbound Merino on a hike

Hiking poles are something you don’t know you need until you use them. And woo-ee have they been a godsend out on the trail at times. For all steep trails or long day hikes having hiking poles can help push you up the mountain or simply just along the trail. I also love that it gives the upper body a bit of the workout instead of it just being all legs. 

And it can be an absolute knee-saver for hikers and backpackers. They help keep you balanced while on the trail and can help redistribute some of the weight.

Lightweight Jacket

a girl with a nano puff jacket and mountains in the distance, showing a great gift idea for hikers and backpackers

A nano puff jacket is the perfect present for hikers and backpackers on those colder days. They are super light, pack down small and keep you warm.

Lightweight jackets often come in both down or synthetic. Ultimately, down will keep you warmer, but won’t pack down as small. Synthetic will pack down small, but won’t necessarily keep you as warm.

First Aid Kit

ultralight/watertight medical kit .5

A first aid kit is an essential item that should be in all hikers and backpacker’s packs. Accidents happen and it’s best if you are prepared. So having a lightweight first aid kit with all the essentials is the perfect gift for hikers and backpackers. 

AllTrails +

AllTrails+ is one of the best gifts for hikers. It’s an annual membership that gives you access to download maps for offline use, 200+ guides, and the best part is you get alerted when you make the wrong turn on a trail. Having this app can be an absolute game changer out on the trail. 

Small Roll of Duct Tape

Having a portable roll of duct tape in your pack can be a lifesaver. Sometimes your hiking pole snaps or the sole of your shoe comes loose and trusty ol’ duct tape can do just the fix. And again, this fits nicely in a stocking! 🙂

SPF Lip Balm

Something hikers and backpackers often overlooks is an SPF lip balm. They might remember the sunscreen, but not a protective layer for their lips! This fits so great in a stocking if you are looking for some ideas.


Emily Wearing The ust Gear Brila 580 Dual Power LED Headlamp which is one of the essentials for your hiking pack
Emily Wearing The ust Gear Brila 580 Dual Power LED Headlamp

A headlamp should always be in a day hikers pack and of course, an essential item for a backpacking trip. Especially for sunset hikes where the trail quickly turns to dark on the hike back. But there is always the chance for something to go wrong on the trail or you time the hike back wrong and you need a light source to get you back. Therefore, having a headlamp to light the trail is crucial and the perfect gift idea for an outdoor enthusiast. 

Emergency Blanket

SOL Emergency Blanket | REI Co-op

Every hiker or backpacker should carry an emergency blanket in their hiking backpack. It can save you in a life-or-death situation, and seriously it costs less than $5. With its reflective material, it uses your body heat to keep you warm. 

Emergency Tent

And if you want to go one step further than an emergency blanket, then an Emergency Tent can be just the thing. An emergency tent is not quite as compact as the emergency blanket but can be super helpful if you need to spend the night out on the trail because something went wrong. This is a great gift idea for avid hikers.


Emily reading her Kindle on a backpacking trip
Emily reading her Kindle on a backpacking trip

An awesome gift for hikers is a small Kindle. Being out in nature is peaceful and relaxing, but it can sometimes get boring if you don’t have something to entertain you. 

You can also go one step further and gift a Kindle Unlimited Membership, so they have access to tons of books.

I always bring a Kindle on a backpacking trip, so I can sit in my hammock, with epic views and read a majestic story. Typically the battery life on a Kindle is very impressive, so you don’t have to worry about it dying, unless you are on a multi-week backpacking adventure. But you can always pair the Kindle with a portable battery back (which I listed earlier in this post). 

Travel-Sized Games

Another great gift for backpackers is a travel-sized game. It’s a fun and easy way to stay entertained at camp. Some of our favorite travel games are a simple deck of waterproof cards, Monopoly Deal, and mini UNO.


A tripod can be a great gift for hikers, so they can take photos other than selfies out on the trail. We also carry the Xenvo Squidgrip Tripod with us on every backpacking adventure too. It’s more of a luxury item, but if the person you are gifting enjoys photography or videography, then I promise this is the perfect gift idea for a hiker or backpacker. 

Insect Repellent

There is nothing worse than getting to your end destination and being bombarded by bugs. So the perfect gift for hikers and backpackers is a nice all-natural bug spray. Our personal favorite is the Murphy’s Nautrals which is infused with lemon eucalyptus essential oils. 

Check out our Best Insect Repellents for camping guide for more great options. 

Cooling Bucket Hat

Jake wearing the Mission Cooling Bucket Hat on a river float, which can make a great gift for hikers and backpackers to keep them cool out on the trail

A recent addition to Jakes wardrobe has been this cooling bucket hat. It’s designed to get wet and keep you cool while hiking along the trail. Dip it into any nearby water source, or simply wet it with your drinking water. It seriously can help significantly while hiking in the desert or when temperatures are high. Also a great hat for any water adventure!


Emily hiking Triangle Pass

Headbands are my favorite hiking companion. If you’ve read any of our hiking blogs, then you will likely see me in a headband for nearly every hike. They keep my hair out of my face, keep me cooler, and well they are kinda style-ish!

My favorite brand is Maven Thread. They don’t slip off my head and are both stretchy and soft.

Bug Face Net

Another brilliant gift idea for hikers is a bug face net. If you’ve ever hiked in a wet area such as Washington or Wisconsin, then you will never know how brilliant this gift idea truly is. 

A Bug Face Net pairs with a hat to protect your face from being attacked by pesky bugs. Because for some reason bugs love to fly in your ears, eyes, mouth, and nose. 

Hammock Bug Net

Another amazing gift idea for hikers and backpackers is a hammock bug net. After a hike up to the stunning Jade Lake, where basically Jake and I spent much of our time sitting in our tent as a bug shield, I loved my hammock bug net. 

We now take it on every backpacking and hiking adventure where we bring our hammock. It just makes relaxing in your hammock that much more peaceful. 

Therm-A-Rest Z Seat

Therm-A-Rest Z Seat

Another great gift idea for hikers and backpackers alike is the Therm-A-Rest Z Seat. Getting to that epic view has never felt so good when you get to sit on something padded versus the hard ground or a rough rock. It’s that luxury item that will make those long hikes extra special. 

Lightweight Backpacking Chair

And if you want a step up from just a padded seat, then a lightweight backpacking chair is the ultimate gift. I personally have the Stoic Backpacking Chair which weighs 2lbs 6oz, but if I were to choose again, I’d probably go with the Ultralight Helix Chair Zero, which only weighs 1lbs. 

Backpacking Meals

Backpacking meals can be expensive, so it’s the perfect gift idea for backpackers. I can’t rave more about Peak Refuel. Their Chicken Pesto is literally something I would order at a fancy restaurant. You can even check my real reaction to trying it for the first time in our Jade Lake YouTube Video.

Also, here are a few other great options, in our best backpacking meals guide.

Titanium Spork

The perfect companion for your dehydrated backpacking meals is a Titanium Spork. It’s lightweight, durable, and easy to clean. We’ve tried many different silverware options over our backpacking adventures, and they either broke or melted. So titanium lives up to its strength and durability.


Leatherman Curl Multi-Tool

A multi-tool, just as it states has multiple uses. It can be your knife, scissors, protection, etc. all in one. 

Reusable Silicone Baggie

Stasher Stand-Up Stasher Bag

An awesome gift for hikers or backpackers is a reusable silicone baggie. These baggies are eco-friendly and help reduce single-use plastic. The best part is you not only can put snacks in the baggies, but you can also add boiling water. 

Therefore, this can help you save tons of money on expensive backpacking meals and just add your own dehydrated food. 

A hiker might be interested in a smaller reusable bag for snacks. A backpacker might be more interested in a larger reusable bag for dehydrated meals. 

Wild Zora Meat & Veggie Bars

Jake holding the BBQ Beef Wild Zora Meat & Veggie Bar with Rialto Beach in the background
BBQ Beef Wild Zora Meat & Veggie Bar

Wild Zora Meat & Veggie Bars are better than Jerky (there I said it)! They are a mix of tender meats, veggies, and amazing spices. There are tons of different flavors, but Jake and I love them all and can’t land on what truly is our favorite flavor. 

These can also make a great stocking stuffer. I put these in Jake’s stocking every year (of course I order in bulk, so I secretly can have some too)!

Instant Coffee

Another great gift idea or stocking stuffer for hikers and backpackers is instant coffee. No one wants to skip out on coffee when they are backpacking. And I mean, coffee just tastes better with a view! 

Verve Coffee Roaster, Alpine Start, and Black Coffee Roasting Co are all top-rated brands for instant coffee. 

Or if the person is a true coffee connoisseur, then they might enjoy a collapsible pour-over dripper. I usually just grind some beans the day before my adventure and you will have a tasty cup of joe enjoying some epic views! 

Lightweight Coffee Mug

Can’t forget the lightweight coffee mug. Everything counts when you are backpacking. And take it from me who has literally hiked with her insulated coffee mug because I didn’t yet have a lightweight coffee mug. Coffee is life, right?!

Toilet Paper

Toilet paper is an essential item in your day pack. You gotta go when you gotta go. For my ladies, we often use it for #1 too. But be sure to always pack it out and follow the Leave No Trace Principles

Of course, the hiker or backpacker can just pack their own, but if you are looking for a practical gag gift or stocking stuffer idea, then this portable TP pack is the perfect item. 

Some female hikers have enjoyed using the Kula Cloth Reusable Antimicrobial Pee Cloth. Personally, I’m not a fan, but it is still a decent gift idea for some hikers and backpackers if they really love reusable and eco-friendly products. 

Hygiene Wipes

Good Wipes are one of the bests way to stay clean between finding showers on the road
Emily cleaning her feet with Good Wipes

There’s nothing worse than getting to your end destination and being covered in a layer of sweat. Having some hygiene wipes to wipe off your grimy sweat will certainly make you much more comfortable at camp. 

Heated Vest

Emily wearing a Venustas Heated Vest, which is the best gifts for hikers and backpackers
Venustas Heated Vest

An absolute game changer for me on any hiking and backpacking adventure has been this Venustas Heated Vest. You will find me in this vest year-round, especially if we do a sunrise hike or sunset hike. And really any hiking adventure with cold weather in the fall, winter, or spring. 

If the person you are gifting runs cold, just take my advice and they will absolutely love you for this gift!

We also work closely with Venustas, so use code TWOROAMINGSOULS for 15% off your order.

Hand or Toe Warmers

And what pairs best with a heated vest? Yes, hand and toe warmers. For those chilly hikes keeping your hands and toes warm might make all the difference in whether you have a good or bad time. 

These can also make excellent stocking stuffers.

Lightweight Gloves

a girl wearing the Matador Freefly 16 Backpack which can be a great gift idea for hikers and backpackers

Another great item to keep you warm on those colder hikes is a nice pair of fleece-lined gloves. These North Face Etip Recycled Gloves have touch-screen capabilities so you can use your phone without taking your hands out.

Sleeping Bag

Sleeping Bags with view of Lake Blanche

A sleeping bag is geared more toward backpackers. Having a quality sleeping bag can make all the difference in whether you get a good night’s sleep or not. 

I run super cold and must be toasty warm to get a good night’s sleep. Therefore, I invested in the Marmot Lithium 0 Sleeping Bag (previously Marmot Ouray) which has a temperature rating of up to 0 degrees Fahrenheit. While you won’t find me out backpacking in sub-0 temperatures, it sure keeps me toasty warm just about any night.

Jake prefers the REI Magma 15 which has a temperature rating of up to 15 degrees Fahrenheit. This sleeping bag is slightly more breathable and less expensive but still made of quality materials. 

Also, be sure to check out our guide for the best best sleeping bags

Sleeping Pad

Two sleeping bags in a tent

Paired with the perfect sleeping bag is a comfortable sleeping pad. It can seriously make or break your night’s rest at camp. 

I can attest to the Big Agnes Boundary Deluxe (previously Q-Core) being one of the best sleeping pads on the market. It has a high R-value of 4.3, weighs less than 2 lbs, and feels like you’re sleeping on a cloud!

But check out our guide for the best sleeping pads.

Air Pump 

Another item you didn’t know you needed until you have one is a battery-powered air pump. Jake gifted me this one Christmas and it makes blowing up anything inflatable a breeze. While it’s added weight on a backpacking trip, it’s still worth it so you don’t have to blow up your pad with your mouth. 

It also helps prevent mold growth in your pad (which can be common if you use your mouth to blow up your air pad).

Backpacking Tent

Big Agnes backpacking tent

If you are looking for a high-ticket item that will absolutely make a backpackers Christmas, then the Big Agnes Copper Spur HV Ultralight Tent is your golden ticket. This was a tent Jake and I wanted for years, and when we saw it on sale one year, we made the bold purchase. We have never looked back, it’s lightweight, packs down small, and made of quality materials. 

I’d suggest going up 1 size for the amount of people sleeping in the tent. For example, we have a UL3, which makes it roomier to fit our backpacks inside. But if the person you are gifting travels with a dog or children, you will want to consider the UL4.

Sleeping Bag Liner

A sleeping bag liner is the perfect gift for backpackers, so they don’t have to wash their valuable down-filled sleeping bag and potentially ruin the bag. 

This Cocoon Coolmax Mummy Liner keeps your sleeping bag clean, protects it from wear & tear, and has moisture-wicking capabilities. 

This Sea to Summit Thermolite Reactor Sleeping Bag Liner does the same as above but also can add 15 degrees of added warmth. It packs down small and is a great companion to a warm sleeping bag.

Bear Spray

Bear Spray is super important when hiking in bear country. It can literally save a hikers life! And it’s often required in grizzly bear territory such as Montana, Canada, some parts of Washington, etc. So if your favorite hiker often visits these places or still hikes in black bear country, this can be the piece of equipment that can protect them from a bear attack.

Bear Canister

Wild Zora Paleo Meal in a bear canister on a backpacking trip which is one of the best backpacking meals
Wild Zora Paleo Meal in a bear canister on a backpacking trip

A bear canister is becoming more popular and actually required in a lot of hikes in bear country. While you don’t need a bear canister for a day hike, you do need one for storing your food at night while backpacking. 

There are a few different sizes to choose from:

Learn more about essential bear safety here. 


Nikwax Hard-Shell Outerwear Care Kit | REI Co-op

Nikwax is a washing detergent made to save all your technical gear. It helps keep your waterproof layers waterproof and your down still lofty and water resistant. 

Check the Price for the Nikwax Hard-Shell Outerwear Care Kit or Nikwax Down Wash Direct.

Walkie Talkies

Midland GXT1000VP4 2-Way GMRS Radios - Pair | REI Co-op

A fun gift for hikers or backpackers is a pair of walkie-talkies. These are especially useful for group hikers to communicate where they are on the trail. Or if you are caravaning to the trailhead from a campsite, it can be nice to keep in touch. 


Nocs Provisions Standard Issue 8 x 25 Waterproof Binoculars | REI Co-op

Binoculars are a perfect gift idea for hikers and backpackers. Seeing wildlife is cool but from a safe distance. So having a pair of binoculars can be an awesome item to bring along on a hiking adventure. 

Gift Ideas For Hikers and Backpackers to keep track of the places they travel:

a push pin map which is a fun way to show all the places you have traveled around the world. This can make gret gift for hikers and backpackers

If a hiker or backpacker like to travel to new places, check out some fun Ways To Keep Track Of Travel for a possible gift idea! It can be a fun way for a hiker or backpacker to know where they have been and keep their eyes open to new travel possibilities.

Final Thoughts on Gift Ideas For Hikers and Backpackers

These gift ideas for hikers and backpackers are all items we own and have collected over the years. We feel these gifts have made us very comfortable along our hikes and backpacking trips. We constantly are looking for the best gear that is made of high quality and will last us for future hikes and backpacking trips. And don’t forget the stocking stuffers ideas for hikers and backpackers.

a girl hiking with words overlay saying gift guide for hiker's & backpacker's
four unique images of gift ideas for hikers and backpackers