HELLO SUMMER! I’ve been yearning for summer since January have you? Though summer doesn’t officially start for another 20 days, you can gear up now with all the clothing and supplies you need to make the most of your summer adventures.* This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated at no extra cost to you if you make a purchase after clicking on affiliate links. If you do–thank you! It helps keep my site running.
Travel & Camping
Outdoor food is a big part of a quality summer–of course you need some Camp Chef! Whether you are camping, tail gating, or spending a day at the park, the Everest 2X is compact but has all you need for a cookout. I like the matchless ignition and compact versatility. I’m crazy about my big Camp Chef set up but sometimes you need something a little more portable that can fit into a tight vehicle or you just want a quick cookout at the park that requires virtually no setup or takedown.
If you’re car camping and want more work space and storage, it pairs really well with the Sherpa Table which provides a great cooking surface and ample storage for all your cooking supplies. The more organized you are, the better your camping trip is going to go, guaranteed. It’s a great way to store your gear and have it ready to go at a moment’s notice. Note: I would not store food in these unless you’re putting it in your car at night. You don’t want to tempt raccoons and bears.
If you want something for the backyard or more involved cooking, definitely check out the Pro60X or the Pro90X which I can’t say enough good things about and use all the time. Camp Chef also offers some great BBQ tools like this Knife Set and Bamboo Cutting Board
Camp Chef Fire Pit
Lastly, Camp Chef has just come out with their new Redwood Fire Pit. This propane fire pit allows you to still have a “camp fire” when there’s a burn ban in many places (make sure your campground allows this before you do it though). It offers a quick backyard s’mores party, and a cozy, contained fire without dealing with wood and smoke any time you want simply by hooking it up to a propane take and pushing the button. This fire pit comes with a lid, something I’ve seen as an expensive accessory with other brands.
Everybody needs a Rumpl for summer road trips, camping, and movie nights on the outdoor screen in the backyard (or couch). If you’re a hammock person, these are ideal for hammock snuggling and keep the bottom from getting too chilly when the temps drop at night.
This Cool Blue Pixelfetti Rumpl has the soothing blue hues of the sea and crystal blue springs. They are the perfect colors for a summer blanket. Loops on all corners allow you to stake it down for picnics or park concerts, and there’s a clasp to wear it as a cape which is great for keeping warm moving about the campsite. It has a soft texture and is well made enough to withstand kids and dogs and when it gets dirty, pop it in the wash.
Men’s Gregory Baltoro 65 Backpack
Gregory’s Baltoro Backpack is the men’s equivalent of the women’s Deva, which is one of the best packs I’ve ever found on the market for comfort and function. Gender specific packs conform to male and female bodies making them more comfortable with better weight distribution. My son is using this Baltoro now and he loves it.
This pack has an advanced air cushion ventilation system making it perfect for summertime packing. It’s highly adjustable to dial in the perfect fit with a free float hip belt to move with you for extra comfort and mobility. It has all the features you’d expect from Gregory, like well thought out organization, a hydration compartment for a reservoir, beefed up cushion at pressure points, and a bottle holder with easy access.
Exped Ultra 5R Sleeping Mat
Exped makes high quality, extremely reliable gear including my all time favorite camp pad–the Mega Mat (which you should totally get for car camping). They also offer light weight backpacking mats like the new Ultra series, Exped’s lightest and most compact sleeping pads. Check out the new Ultra 5R Sleeping Mat It comes with the Schnozzel Pumpbag, an innovative inflation method to keep you from getting winded while setting up camp while preventing moisture from getting inside the mat and doubling as a dry bag.
Dedicated Inflate and Deflate valves make the whole process easier and if you over-inflate, you can easily let some air out for desired firmness. Outer chambers are thicker which cradles you on the mat making you more comfortable and cozy. Materials are eco friendly and I’m loving the new bright green. These mats come in a variety of sizes, shapes and warmness. Be sure to watch the quick video on the description page for the Ultra to help you dial in which version is best for your needs, they really made them specific to be the best possible fit. While you’re looking at the Ultra R, check out this Ultra Pillow which packs down tiny and makes a perfect companion to the mat and the new SitPad Flex which provides quick comfort and packs light.
Black Diamond Storm-R Headlamp
Black Diamond makes my favorite headlamps, and they are always improving them. I consider a headlamp a top necessity for camping, and also something you need in your day hiking pack. The newest Storm-R Headlamp is powered by a lithium battery that charges with a micro USB in two hours and runs for 7 hours on high, 19 on medium and 350 hours on low.
A battery meter tells you how much life is left. I keep a backup headlamp on hand when I’m camping–never had to use it but it’s nice to know it’s there if my primary dies and I can’t just pop in batteries like the older headlamps. Rechargeable headlamps are superior because they perform better in the cold and you don’t have to buy and dispose of batteries.The Storm-R is waterproof, has multiple beam settings, a PowerTap light adjuster and red, green and blue light. It’s also a comfortable headlamp which I find Black Diamond excels in compared to other brands I’ve tried.
Alps Mountaineering Escape Chair
I’ve been using Alps gear for years and I can’t believe I’m only just now discovering the Escape Chair. Holy Cow! It is insanely comfortable. It’s perfect for campfires, parks, and the back yard. It’s nice to put your feet up after a day of hiking and activity. The foot rest is adjustable so you can get the perfect fit. It packs easily into its stuff sack to sling over your shoulder and head out the door. Must have camp chair!
Orca Insulated Chaser Tumblers
You definitely need insulated cups for your summer road trips. Did you know Orca has fun, festive insulated stainless steel glossy Lifestyle Chaser Tumblers that will keep your beverages nice and cold or your coffee hot all morning? These are so much more exciting than plain cups, I appreciate the summery themes and bright colors. The opening to drink is a whale tale and they fit perfectly in your car cupholder.
Thermarest Ohm Sleeping Bag
Thermarest’s new Ohm Sleeping Bag is ultralight, butter soft, able to zip to another Ohm to make into a double and has a 900 fill loft of responsibly sourced down. It’s a warm one, but when I’m camping I always like to pack a warmer bag than I think I will need and that strategy has served me well. It has a full length zipper that goes all the way around the footbox so that you can unzip it if you get too warm and also so you can use it as a comforter. This bad boy packs way down, and is perfect for backpacking or car camping. It’s warm and cuddly and has a feel that’s not too far off from your comfy duvet at home. The Ohm also comes in Long for taller campers.
Whether you are camping in the back country or at a campground, or backpacking through Asia, you need a PackTowl. They are thin and light but absorbent and dry very quickly. They have a loop on the corner which is great for campground showers. PackTowls add barely any weight or bulk to your bag and would be perfect to keep in your car and daypack for impromptu summertime swims.
Sagan X-Stream Water Filter Straw & Aqua Brick
With the Sagan X-Stream Water Filter Straw, you can drink water from any non-salt water source. You can put the straw right in the lake or stream and drink. At 9 ounces, the X-Stream is certified to filter 250 gallons of water, removing bacteria, virus, giardia and cryptosporidium. Paired with the Aqua Brick, you can have a large water supply from the outdoors and filter as you go. It’s a pretty smart system.
The Aqua Brick is awesome for camping and also for emergency preparedness. They stack on each other which is brilliant. This way you don’t have to have a giant, hard to maneuver drum. You can just collect these and stack them until you have an appropriate supply. I would say these are both emergency must haves and non-negotiables..
Klean Kanteen has a new 25 oz. insulated bottle with a pour-through cap. I’ve never seen this before. It allows you to only open the cap part way to pour. This helps keep hot drinks hot and cold drinks cold by preventing thermal loss, keeping iced drinks cold for 80 hours and hot drinks hot for 24. I also really like the 16 oz Insulated Tumbler that comes with a stainless straw. It’s great for the car and every day life. It even works with icey smoothies.
Finally, you need good, non toxic food containers and this Food Box Set fits the bill for camping, picnics, beach days, snacks, and any time you want to pack a lunch. The square container fits a sandwich perfectly and there is no waste!
Nite Ize Illumination for Fun
How about some fun illumination? Nite Ize has a super cool FlashFlight frisbee that lights up in multiple colors and is rechargeable! This is great for evenings at the park or to keep the kids busy at the campsite while the adults enjoy the campfire. I love these fabulous NiteGem Lights too. Aren’t they fun? Toss them in the cooler, in the tent, or on the table for some instant ambiance and festivity. Both of these can be set at a specific color or to color changing mode.
For more practical lighting, look at the 3-in-1 Mini Flashlight, which works as a lantern, safety light or regular flashlight. It runs on two AA batteries and is a handy all-around flashlight that fits in your pocket. Lastly, check out this Radiant Rechargeable Shineline. This definitely adds some festive vibes to your campsite or patio, but it’s practical too, lighting your way.
Gerber Stake Out & In The Field Kit
Gerber has a new multitool made for campers. The Stake Out has 11 tools to help maintain your gear, set up camp, cook, and pack out. I’ve never seen a stake-puller on a multi-tool before. I love it when they have a carabiner to clip to your pack so it’s handy when you need it. Gerber made it light weight and with all the essentials to eliminate having to pack heavier tools.
Another great option for campers is the new In The Field Kit which comes with a fire starter, a minimalist every day carry knife with cut-outs to make it extra light weight, and a knife sharpener to keep it sharp. This is a really nice, basic kit anyone could use for camping gear or your emergency bag–which I know you all have, right?
Seal Line Dry Bags
If you are doing any paddling (and I hope you are!), you need a dry bag. Seal Line’s Discovery Dry Bags come in several sizes and colors. They’ll keep your stuff dry and organized. You can color code with friends and family members, or based on gear. They are perfect for the kayak and boat.
Here’s a nifty little gadget–the Geekey is a multi-tool that fits on your key ring. Made of quality stainless steel, it features a bike spoke key, screwdrivers, bottle opener and more, and it is TSA compliant.
Clothing, Shoes & Accessories
Pistil Designs Accessories
For the last few seasons I’ve been raving about Pistil Designs and I never stop being amazed at how great their stuff is. You really can’t go wrong. This summer I am loving the Dune Sun Hat with it’s bendable, not-too-big rim and cute band. I’m also in love with the Hey You bag which is versatile and holds a ton of stuff. Look at those cute pom poms! It has inner pockets for organization and you can carry it as a tote or crossbody and the strap is adjustable and soft. The Hey You comes in different colors and patterns, the Pumice gray is a rich neutral goes with everything. It’s perfect for the beach, the plane and and everyday bag.
Costa makes some of the best sunglasses on the market as well as some of my favorites, especially for summer because they are polarized and perfect to wear around water. I’ve got a great every day pair for you and a hard core pair for water sports.
First, Costa’s Coco aviator shades. Simple, sleek and show the world in high definition without the glare that causes eye fatigue. They come in different colors in frames and lenses. I always go for Costa’s blue lenses because they are so pretty, but tried the gray this time and love them too.
Costa has some high tech sunglasses made specifically for fishing and water sports. The Reefton Pros are made with features to function flawlessly while fishing out on the water, like large frames, water drainage, sweat management, adjustable nose pads and side shields. You can also attach retainers to the keeper loops so they won’t come off in the water.
Acorn Slippers & Sandals
I’m a huge fan of Acorn’s awesome slippers. Right now I’m loving the light weight, travel friendly Algea Infused Spa Slippers in a bright summery white that goes with all your light color jammies. They are soooo soft! Acorn makes a great sandal too. Check out these cute leather Everywear Riley Sandals. At first I wasn’t sure about how those straps would feel around my toes but they are totally comfortable and stay on great. They come in three colors and are dressier than flip flops while still slipping on and off easily.
I almost always have Eddie Bauer clothing with me when I travel because it’s so practical and travel friendly. Take the Sightscape Slim Horizon Ankle Pants. They are flattering and functional with zip pockets and quick dry material that is great for washing in a hotel sink.
When I’m car camping, I’m not counting every ounce and want cozy stuff to wear by the fire at night. The Mineral Wash Terry Crew Sweatshirt is perfect for camp and everyday wear. It’s true to size, fits a bit loose like a sweatshirt should and has pockets!
Finally, these Cozy Camp Easy Pull On Pants are generously sized and soft. Great for hanging out in after an active day. Something really awesome about EB is they offer petite sizing. A lot of outdoor brands do not have this option and I find that with a majority of EB’s clothes, there is a petite version which is great for me at 5’5.
Kodiak Brigden Shoe
Kodiak won me over right away with their comfortable, stylish Chelsea Boots (which you should totally check out in the fall). But they also have summertime footwear–look at these cute but tough Brigden Shoes. I love the chunky soles that offer loads of shock absorption and comfort. The charcoal Brigden are great looking, match everything and are so well made I think they will last forever. They are true to size.
Royal Robbins makes some of my favorite travel clothing because they are so light weight and often multifunctional. Like these Jammer II Pants that convert to capris (and comes in Short!) and this Discovery Jacket which converts to a vest. Both offer a put together look while still being technical. Getting two items out of one is a great way to save space and weight in your bag and give you more options.
I also love these uber light Spotless Evolution Joggers which pack down so small they’d even be appropriate for your day pack.
Chaco Chillo Sneakers
Need some ultra light shoes to pack? Check out Chaco’s new Chillo Sneakers. They are SO CUTE. They have awesome arch support and are feather light so they won’t add much weight to your carryon. I love the casual linen-ish look from the recycled poly-canvas material that goes so well with jeans and linen. Chill Sneakers are priced extremely well too, so you get a great value for a more expensive look. They are perfect for hot summer days when you don’t want to wear sandals but want zero demands on your feet.
Speaking of demands, if you are traveling or camping with expectations of being sore at the end of the day, this little cordless massage gun by iLive is pretty light weight and packable and does a great job to loosen up tight muscles and support recovery after activity. I wouldn’t backpack with this obviously, but it’s great for car camping. Definitely worth packing.
Brandless Pro Blender
Need a cheap blender for camping that can still blend your green smoothies? This is a plug-in blender that I think was meant to mimic a Vitamix. It’s not as hard core in construction as a Vitamix, but it does the job (blending bunches of kale, fruit and ice very quickly and thoroughly) and it fits the bill for travel when you don’t want to take your $600 blender on the road. Find it HERE.
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