Not quite, but very close is the start of our camping season. Once the rains and cold weather move their way out of our weather system, we can start looking for some weekend camping activities, both near and far. While backpacking is a great way to get away from civilization, it’s likely that we’ll continue car camping for the foreseeable future, which means we can lug whatever gear we want. 🙂
We’ve received some really stellar camping goodies to test out, and these are a great addition not only for camping, but for use around the house as well.
GoalZero makes all kinds of great gear for use in lots of situations. They sent us a Lighthouse 250 Lantern, which has 250 lumens of bright, LED light, recharges quickly from USB, solar or the included hand crank, and has a built-in USB port to power small handheld devices to keep you connected. This is a well-thought-out, well-designed piece of gear that looks good, functions as it should, and provides safety and comfort both out camping (light enough to carry in a backpack) and on your back porch.
While not made for camping specifically, the CamelBak Relay Water Filtration Pitcher certainly deserves a place in your car camping gear (it’s easily light enough to carry in a backpack, but the Groove Water Bottle might be batter option). The Relay uses a unique Double Filter Technology that allows you to filter at the speed of your faucet. The innovative double-filter design removes chlorine, taste, and odors twice—every time you fill and every time you pour. We’ve been in plenty of campsites where the provided well water smells off, tastes funky, or both. This pitcher will go a long way to make drinking and cooking more pleasant. We use it as our daily filtration pitcher, but it will definitely come with us on our camping trips.
One of the things we look forward to are new products from CLIF – while plenty of their bars are among our favorites, the new Mojo Bars definitely have added some pizazz to their options. 70% organic (hopefully 100% someday), with plenty of protein, Mojo Bars are offered in Sweet and Salty, Fruit and Nut, and Dark Chocolate varieties – we love them all! Another product that is equally at home in your home or for any activity you can imagine. Buy lots.
With kids spanning nearly 4 to 13, it’s not always easy to find family activities that are appropriate and interesting for anyone. Hide and Seek is good family fun, but not always “fair.” Capture the Flag is another favorite, but again, more difficult for the younger ones. Snipe Hunt is a great cross between the two, offering the possibility of Hide and Seek for any age, along with making Capture the Flag easier for the very youngest. The object of Snipe is to be the first team/person (he Snipe hunt game can be played with two people, two teams or special single seeker play) to find the other team/persons snipe and return it to its nest. After the players have hidden their snipe the other player or team tries to find it. After a period of time, if the Snipes have not been discovered, they will chirp and then their eyes will light up, making it doable for the youngsters. The Snip Hunt is suitable for both indoor and outdoor play, so a rainy afternoon means you can keep them moving indoors.
You’ve gotta eat while camping, right? We sometimes bring raw ingredients and put together fabulous meals while camping, but sometimes it’s more fun (and time-saving) to use a pre-packaged product. Mountain House is a name well-known amongst the outdoorsy set, with tasty pouches of freeze-dried, ready to eat goodness. I know there is no way around it, but I wish Mountain House could come up with a way to package their food with less preservatives. Beyond that, it’s great fun to taste a variety of things to find what you really like. Pretty much every time we walk into REI my kids ask if we can buy the Mountain House Ice Cream Sandwiches AGAIN – if you haven’t tried dried ice cream, you really don’t know what you’re missing!
Disclaimer: These items were provided to us for review purposes.
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