Hiker Gift Ideas
Don't know what to get for someone who loves hiking? With the Christmas Season coming fast, we're giving you a round up of gift ideas.
Most of us start geeking out over topographical ("topo" in hiker lingo) maps at an early age and never stop. Maps are fun to pore over at home weeks before a hike, usually accompanied by a hiking buddy and a few cold ones. On the trail itself, maps are a crucial ingredient for a fun and successful trip.
They add a nice power boost on the way up the mountain and they provide an even bigger benefit on the way down, helping to maintain balance on tricky, rocky descents.
The daypack is perhaps the most essential piece of gear for a new hiker. You can't go wrong buying one as a gift. But even if the mountainwoman in your life already has a pack, consider buying her another one.
Hiking season doesn't have to end with the first snowfall. Treat your favorite outdoors person to their own snowshoes and they'll keep smiling all winter long.
When hikers aren't hiking, they like to READ about hiking. For weeks and even months before a trip, many hikers spend hours reading up on their destination. They like practical advice (Any waterfalls along the way? Any pitfalls to watch for at critical trail junctures?). But they also like to read the stories behind the trails and peaks they hope to experience. The best guidebooks provide a blend of practical information along with colorful stories about the earliest surveyors of the mountains and valleys.
If you go hiking often enough, you may eventually encounter a bear. If you're lucky, he'll scamper away like a kid getting off the bus on the last day of school. But don't leave it to chance. Do what you can to avoid an encounter.
The Mountaineer in Keene Valley (every High Peak hiker's favorite apres-hike store) sells neat little area rugs that look like blown-up versions of the state Department of Environmental Conservation trail markers you see nailed to trees in the Adirondacks and Catskills. And just like the real DEC markers, the rugs come in four different colors.
Old-fashioned flashlights work OK, but they're not ideal. Headlamps allow hikers to keep their hands free to maneuver over rocks or carry trekking poles.
Go for a gift card for a place like Mountainman Outdoor Supply Co. in Saratoga. (You know, to buy some gear!)
An Adirondack Mountain Club membership
For a modest annual fee of $50/single or $60/family, benefits include free workshops and educational programs; hundreds of chapter-led outings (perfect if you need some outing partners) in all four seasons; and discounts on guidebooks, lodging and even parking at the coveted Adirondak Loj lot.