Home / Tech News / From solar showers to tiny espresso makers, these are the best camping gadgets

From solar showers to tiny espresso makers, these are the best camping gadgets


Camping lets you enjoy the great outdoors, without requiring you to be shackled to the technology that pervades our everyday lives. But when there are so many cool camping gadgets available to take on your next outdoor adventure —  many of which won’t break the bank — it’s hard to resist a little bit of tech. From a pint-sized espresso machine to a straw that lets you drink water directly from a river, our list is comprised of gear to help you agonize less and spend more time enjoying the nature around you. And when you’re finished, take a gander at our guide on what you should pack in an outdoor emergency kit. After all, accidents do happen.

GoTenna ($150)

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If you and a friend accidentally split up during a hike, and don’t feel like playing Marco Polo for the next half hour, then the GoTenna is for you. Once connected to a smartphone via Bluetooth, the device allows you and a companion to send texts or GPS coordinates to one another using a low-frequency radio wave network — that is, assuming you’re within three miles of each other (it works up to six miles in flat areas, and a mile in cities). The wands are sold in pairs and each lasts for several days on a single charge. Do keep in mind you can’t contact emergency services with it, unfortunately. Overall, the GoTenna is durable, affordable, and can be a lifesaver for anyone who likes to venture into the great outdoors on their own. Watch our full GoTenna review here.

Buy one now from:

Amazon

Venture Pal Daypack ($21)

cool camping gadgets

Venture Pal’s Daypack is the best of both worlds. Not only is this streamlined pack lightweight and durable enough to throw anything at it, it’s cheap price point makes it entirely too tempting to refuse. The pack holds up to 35 liters and when you’re done using it, it folds within itself, allowing you to save some extra shelf space. It isn’t waterproof but the Venture Pal Daypack is still ideal for people who enjoy light hikes and camping trips when the weather’s nice. If you’re in need of additional suggestions, we’ve also curated a list of the best backpacks for any outdoor outing.

Buy one now from:

Amazon

Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag ($20-$25)

cool camping gadgets

Like the name suggests, the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag excels at keeping belongings dry during your next rafting or kayaking adventure. As an added bonus, the bag also comes with a waterproof phone case — one which event allows your phone to be submerged in up to 100 feet of water. The bag is also available in a range of sizes, and comes with a convenient shoulder strap. Earth Pak has seemingly thought of everything when it comes to making the perfect dry bag.

Buy one now from:

Amazon

MiniPresso Espresso Maker ($52)

cool camping gadgets

The outdoors are great and all but they’re glaringly missing something: coffee shops. Fortunately, MiniPresso makes an espresso maker so compact and easy to use you can finally take good-tasting coffee with you — no matter your weekend destination. With a cup of grounded beans and some hot water, the MiniPresso provides instant coffee that doesn’t taste like “instant coffee.” You also don’t have to worry about wasting paper filters thanks to the espresso maker’s stainless-steel sieve. It weighs less than a pound and measures a mere 7 inches long, too, which makes it great for traveling. Better yet, pair it with Wacaco’s protective case and you’ll have yourself a mini-espresso maker that stays with you for quite some time.

Buy one now from:

Amazon

BioLite Campstove 2 ($200)

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With a couple pieces of kindling and a match, BioLite’s eco-friendly Campstove allows you to cook food, boil water, and charge your smartphone on the trail. Once up and running, it boils a pot of water in less than five minutes — depending on the strength of your fire — and juices your phone with about an hour of talk time after 20 minutes of charging. The device is compatible with BioLite’s existing KettlePot and Portable Grill, too, and comes equipped with an LED dashboard that provides information on the amount of available power at any given moment. If your camping diet is nothing more than some hot dogs and s’mores — and you want to make the occasional phone call — then the Campstove 2’s added features make it worth the price of admission.

Buy one now from: 

Amazon

Anker 21W Dual USB Solar Charger ($60)

cool camping gadgets

Like Superman, Anker’s lineup of solar panels harness the power of the sun to charge two of your devices simultaneously. Anker’s 21-watt offering provides an impressive 2.4 amps per port, however, it’s also the company’s most expensive model to date. The solar charger is incredibly portable and built to withstand mud and an occasional dusting. The device’s internal components render it too delicate to use in the rain but for the price, this is one of the best solar chargers you can take on your next camping trip. If you want a cheaper offering, Anker has other products which vary in price and wattage.

Buy one now from:

Amazon

Mosquito Repellent Bracelet ($16)

cool camping gadgets

For those beautiful, mosquito-ridden campsites, a bracelet built to ward off bugs can be a godsend. Though many companies sell repellent bracelets nowadays, what makes this offering the best of the bunch is that it’s 100-percent natural and non-toxic — meaning it won’t set off an allergic reaction or lead to an irritable rash. A single bracelet lasts up to 240 hours, too, though that number drops drastically if the bracelet gets exposed to water. Thankfully, they come in packs of 15 and fit adults and children alike.

Buy one now from:

Amazon

Nemo Helio LX ($130)

cool camping gadgets

There’s nothing nicer than a warm shower after camping but why wait until after your trip? The Nemo Helio LX sports a six-gallon tank and a pumping mechanism, which nets you a shower experience no other portable shower offers. After stepping on the pump mechanism a few times, the shower provides up to 10 minutes of steady pressure and you can make the water warm by placing it in direct sunlight. Nemo also offers a cheaper option, though it features a smaller tank and lacks the nifty silicon sleeve that holds the nozzle in place.

Buy one now from: 

Amazon

LifeStraw Personal Water Filter ($20)

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The LifeStraw Personal Water Filter allows you to turn any swimming hole into your own, personal drinking fountain. The filter eradicates 99.99 percent of waterborne bacteria and parasites, and it filters up to 1,000 liters of contaminated water without the use of chemicals. The straw lets you turn any bottle of contaminated water into drinking water for a mere $20, and its portability makes it second to none.

Buy one now from: 

Amazon

Casio Pro Trek PRG600Y-1 ($320)

cool camping gadgets

You’re probably good with any watch in Casio’s Pro Trek series but we’re a sucker for this particular model — namely because it hits the sweet spot when it comes to features and price. One of the watch’s coolest features is its Triple Sensor Engine, which provides you with directions, altitude readings, and weather forecasts. The device is powered via an unnoticeable solar panel located on the watch face and its frame is tough enough to endure temperatures as low as 14 degrees Fahrenheit and up to a 100 meters of water.

Buy one now from: 

Casio



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