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8 Great Gift Ideas for Campers

Camping is my favorite outdoor activity.

My wife and I have camped all over Florida in tents and RVs, along streams and rivers, on remote beaches accessible only by boat and deep in the woods.

There is really nothing like the experience, and there are few better places to enjoy it than Florida. Birds singing, the rustle of wildlife scurrying through the woods, listening to fish jumping in the surf, sometimes loud enough to buzz you awake in the middle of the night.

My gift list includes a few comforts, a few necessities and all cool ideas for the camper in your life.

— Bob Rountree, co-publisher


Coleman 30″ x 80″ Comfortsmart Deluxe Cot

My brother has one of these cots, and he raved about how comfortable it is. I’ve slept on enough hard ground over the years to truly appreciate the kind of comfort this cot affords. For Florida camping, a raised cot allows air to pass above and below your body, a desirable feature on warmer nights. We get plenty of those. This foldable cot has a foam mattress, a spring coil suspension and a steel frame that will support up to 300 pounds. Obviously it’s not for backpacking or kayaking, but it’s great for car camping and should easily stash in an SUV. Total weight of the cot is under 20 pounds. $76.44 on Amazon. (A shorter 69-inch version is $46.19 on Amazon.)


Klymit Insulated Static V Sleeping Pad

At 25 ounces, this lightweight fabric-woven air mattress packs small (5 x 8 inches). Ideal for backpacking and comfortable enough for tent camping. With an innovative v-chamber design, offering comfortable weight distribution, it will inflate to accommodate a 6-footer with 10-15 breaths. The insulation prevents heat loss on cool nights. Easy-to-use push valve allows for quick inflation and deflation. Includes stuff sack and patch kit. Limited Lifetime Warranty. $56.15 on Amazon (An uninsulated version is available for $44.52 on Amazon.)


Hennessy Hammock Expedition Series (Side Zipper)

Hennessy’s most popular tent hammock with patented “easy enter, easy exit” through the bottom, “never-tip” center balance design, mesh pocket on ridge line and webbing straps to protect the bark of trees. These camping hammocks are ideal for backpackers on long hikes or coastal kayakers in search of remote beaches. Bug-proof, waterproof and windproof. Triangular mesh gear pocket, glove hooks & carabineer loops. Height limit: 6 ft (182.9 cm). Weight limit: 250 lbs (115kg) Comes complete with attached mosquito netting, detachable rain fly, support ropes and stuff sack. $147 on Amazon.


Etekcity Rechargeable LED Camping Lantern w/USB charging station

We always keep a lantern and a flashlight handy at the entrance to our tent so everybody knows where to find it in the dark. With 180 lumens, this nicely designed LED lantern will definitely light the way. A great table lantern, or your companion for that midnight stroll to the rest room. Powered by either 3 AA batteries or 2 rechargeable 2200mAh batteries, you have options in case your campsite doesn’t have electric service. The USB charging port will recharge other devices like cell phones, tablets and cameras. This lantern is waterproof, and it collapses to a compact size. $23.99 on Amazon. 


Victorinox Swiss Army Classic SD Pocket Knife

Cut that thread, snip a zip tie, tighten a screw. Solid, polished stainless steel handles and compact enough to fit in your pocket or hook to your key fob, the 2¼” Classic SD is functional, versatile and always there when you need it. Knife’s seven functions equip you for any adventure (blade, nail file, screwdriver, scissors, key ring, tweezers and toothpick). Stainless steel construction and Swiss-made precision, the Classic SD is the perfect outdoors companion. 2.3″ (L); 0.4″ (H) and weighs less than an ounce. Lifetime warranty. $13.99 on Amazon


Coleman WeatherMaster 6-Person Family Cabin Tent

My basic advice for purchasing a tent for use in Florida is to get one with twice the capacity you need. If you have a family of 3-4, you need a tent that sleeps 6-8. Why? Air circulation. This is Florida, and circulation is critical most of the year. You want windows on all sides to enhance circulation, and a roof vent with a rain fly to allow upward ventilation. This 6-person tent from venerable Coleman fills the bill at an affordable price. A two-room tent that sleeps six, it has a 17-by-9 footprint and 6 ft. 10 in. center height. Oodles of room for a Florida family of four. Stock it with those Coleman Comfortsmart cots at the top of this page and you’re golden. The floor-less screened room offers outstanding circulation that carries into and across the tent and through the completely vented ceiling, which is covered by a fly. With a screened foyer, mosquitos will have a hard time gaining entry. What’s not to like? $161 on Amazon.


ALPS Mountaineering Meramac 2 Person Dome Tent

alspmeramactentThe thing I like about this tent is that it’s airy, and that’s important when you are camping in Florida. Made of polyester taffeta, it’s also light, weighing in at just 6 pounds 14 ounces. The free-standing, 2-pole design features shock corded fiberglass poles, allowing you to set this tent up anywhere without stakes. The weatherproof fly with a ridge pole is essential in Florida, where the weather can change suddenly and unexpectedly throughout the year. There are a lot of lightweight tents out there, but what attracted me to this particular tent was the high ratings and high number of positive reviews. Best of all, it’s inexpensive. $74.95 on Amazon.

For Amazon’s complete selection of tents, go to Amazon Tent Buying Guide


Stanley Classic Vacuum Insulated Growler, 64 oz

Yesssss! Fill ‘er up with craft beer at your local brewpub and take it camping! This 64-ounce growler will keep your beer cold for a full 24 hours, plenty of time to get to your campsite, set up the tent and put dinner on the stove. Also great for beach and boat. (Iced beverages stay cold for 100 hours.) Stainless steel with vacuum-insulated body and a foam-insulated, steel-lined lid. No plastic contact with your beer, BPS-free and won’t rust. Heavy duty handle makes it easy to carry and pour. Dishwasher safe. Lifetime warranty. This one is on my personal wish list — in case you are interested. ;-) $50 on Amazon (32-ounce half-growler available on Amazon for $40)


Disclosure: We have partnered with Amazon to bring you the best prices. enjoys a modest commission from your purchases to help support our efforts to bring you new adventures in the authentic Florida.

Check out our Gift Ideas for Kayakers



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One Comment

  1. Pingback: Great gift ideas for backpacking and hiking | Florida Rambler

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