It’s easy to get attached to your camping gear. With each piece you acquire, it feels like you’ve made an investment in your outdoor adventures. As the years go by it seems like your camping equipment feels more like a trunk-load of old friends that are by your side creating new memories. Maybe it’s a knife your dad passed down to you or an old cast-iron skillet you’ve used for years. These items do have value to all of us beyond their functionality.
But as the years go by you’re also missing out on the latest advances in gear technology, and some equipment has progressed significantly.
Here are a few items that you should consider retiring in favor of an update. So dig through your gear and see what’s passed its prime. From there it’s out with the old and in with the new.
If your tent is older than five years – let alone some of the decades old monstrosities that you still see from time to time – it’s time for an upgrade.
Not only does a tent collect dirt and rips as the years pass, but you’re missing out on some great advancements. New tents are easier than ever to erect thanks to innovative pole systems. They often have sturdier zippers and materials, as well as ever-improving storage features like vestibules and interior storage options for squirreling away gear. They’re also getting lighter, which makes for an easier backpack load.
Light: Lanterns, Headlamps, Flashlights
Are you still using a flashlight, lantern, or headlamp that requires batteries and bulbs? Then you’re behind the times. Modern light sources are charged by plugging them into the wall or a USB port, and their LED lights will shine practically forever. Lithium batteries in these new light-devices will run significantly longer than traditional batteries and cost effective with no need to buy new batteries.
Sleeping bags have come a long way over the past decade. They used to be among the heaviest, largest things in your backpack, but these days you can get bags that are much lighter and take up significantly less space. At the same time, they’re more effective at keeping you warm thanks to modern materials. Moisture wicking materials and varied temperature ratings allow you to personalize your bag to situations you most encounter and help keep you cool or warm depending on the time of year.
If you haven’t taken a look at cooking supplies and gear made for campers, you are in for a treat. The goal of these products is to make camp cooking as easy as possible with the best possible tasting food, but there is a line to dance. You are camping to experience the outdoors and get away from the day-to-day. With that, cooking outdoors should pay homage to a primordial grilling experience. Easier, but not a watered down experience. From portable full-sized grills, such as the All-Terrain Grill, to utensil carriers and app-controlled thermometers, these aren’t yesteryear’s cooking gear.
If you’re using your old backpack, you’re missing out. The latest packs offer better organized storage space, are much lighter, and have greatly improved in comfort and support technology.
Regardless of what you update you’ll essentially find the same benefits across the board – lighter, smaller, stronger, and more comfortable.