Our Gear Guy tested five lightweight soft shells, and the Keele was his favorite. “I was most impressed with how [it] almost completely repelled water during the shower test, leaving very little moisture on the interior after 30 seconds,” he wrote. This is the jacket you should grab for chilly runs.
18 Gear Deals to Upgrade Your Summer Camping Kit
Outside staffers get compliments on their Marmot PreCip jackets every time they wear them. The simple, streamlined design works well for urban commutes, epic hikes, and high-speed singletrack descents. Plus, Marmot makes them in solid colors that look good on everybody. You won’t find a more reliable, comfortable shell at a better price.
Part Tupperware, part dinnerware, the Mealkit 2.0 combines storage and serving with its system of plates, bowls, cups, and lids, making it easy to prep a meal at home and store it in a cooler on the way to a picnic spot. Plus it’s light enough to take into the backcountry.
Our gear editor praised Patagonia's Nine Trails packs for their clean efficiency: “With a minimalist design and well-considered features, Patagonia has proven that when it comes to daypacks, simpler is better,” he writes. It's available in both men's and women's sizes from 14 liters to 36 liters.
If you’re still rolling up your midlayer to use as a pillow on the trail, it’s time to upgrade. The Premium weighs just 2.8 ounces, but inflates to five inches thick in just a few breaths.
This bag is a staple for summer surf trips, shoulder-season backpacking trips, and overnight forays into the mountains. It’s light and compact enough for taking out on the trail, yet still comfy enough for casual car-camping adventures, and it comes at a price that won’t destroy your summer-wandering budget.
Constructed with 2.5-layer GORE-TEX, the Paclite Stretch is built to brush off rain showers and snow. With vents to dump heat and a drop-tail hem that protects your lower half from downpours, it's a complete waterproof package.
Gear editor Emily Reed loves the Eldris, which is a staple of her camping box. She finds the oversize handle and fixed blade effective for whittling and chopping kindling. Plus, the affordable price means it's not a devastating loss if she accidentally forgets the knife at a campsite. Read her full review here.
The back panel on this space-efficient pack closely mimics the curve of a woman’s back, making it so comfy that testers almost forgot they had it on. It’s available in five sizes, so you can really dial in the fit.
The SuperFly has served gear editor Jeremy Rellosa for years without fail. “I've taken this stove everywhere from Nepal to Patagonia, and it's kept my trail food warm and my backpack happy because it's easy to use, clean, and stow,” he says.
The Air Core Insulated sleeping pad offers a 4.1 R-value, with a comfort range down to 15 degrees. Complete with a ripstop nylon outer and stuffed with a thin layer of PrimaLoft insulation, it’s a durable multi-season pad for those chilly nights under the stars.
Although it’s minimal, this kit contains the most commonly needed first aid products, including gauze, scissors, band-aids, and ibuprofen.
Your new summer shorts, the Zion is made from super-stretchy nylon and spandex. The abrasion-resistant fabric is naturally UPF 50, and the built-in belt makes sure you always have a snug fit.
“This sock did everything extremely well, but mostly it was just damn comfy,” wrote our Gear Guy. The Hiker provides a nice cushion for the heel and forefoot without being too bulky, and the fit is super snug. The merino-nylon-spandex blend is odor-resistant and never itchy.
This suitcase-style pack is ideal for keeping your gear organized and separated. The internal padded laptop sleeve keeps electronic devices safe, and a small pocket on the front of the pack fits documents, a phone, or a notebook. You can carry the Mission three ways: as a suitcase, over the shoulder, or backpack style.
A great everyday layer with technical chops, the Nano Puff packs down to the size of an orange. It brought enough heat to keep our testers warm in low thirty-degree weather. It’s filled with high-loft synthetic insulation, and the ripstop fabric is treated with DWR to repel water.
Sometimes, sandals just aren’t warm enough around the campsite. And if you’re working from home, a reliable pair of house slippers is crucial. That’s why we like the Taft: the fluffy interior lining keeps your feet toasty, while the grippy rubber outsole allows you to transition between walks outside and lounges around the house.
This portable jump starter is the size of a sandwich, but has the juice to single-handedly revive a vehicle. Charge it via the included USB cable, and throw it in the trunk for additional peace of mind wherever you drive.
“There are plenty of puffy blankets on the market, but the Rumpl Down Puffy takes the cake,” our tester wrote. This compressible, 600-fill down blanket will keep you warm on your next stargazing outing. It's versatile, too: “The Down Puffy can be your sleeping bag stand-in on a summer backpacking trip.”
Outside’s male staffers love the Retro Pile Pullover for its fuzzy, versatile warmth. Credit the double-sided shearling that's soft on the skin. It works great as a midlayer fleece or over a shirt for spring hikes.
No need to opt for a military-grade cooler when a classic Igloo does the job. This 16-quart model has ample room for on-the-go meals, but is small enough to stash on the seat floor or trunk. Throw in a few Ziplocs of ice, and the Playmate will keep your snacks cool for hours in the car or at the campsite.
The Mega Mat Duo is the most comfortable mattress we’ve used for car camping, hands down. It’s a 10-centimeter-thick air pad with memory foam insulation. It’s pricey, but it’s the closest we’ve come to feeling like we were in our bed at home while camping.