2016 Holiday Buyer's Guide for the Conscientious Adventurer
Updated: Feb 12, 2019
Guests | Members | Community | Environment
Seems almost too simple, but it is actually really hard to give a bad t-shirt! We recommend making the most of your money by looking for a company with high environmental and social standards or one that supports a cause that is shared by the giftee! TIP: Read the
companies "About Us" to find out what they really stand for!
Some of our favs:
Gear is a tough one, but there are so so many blogs that have tackled the research for you like Backpackers Magazine's "2016 Holiday Gift Guide" or Clever Hiker's "100 Great Gifts for Backpacking, Hiking and Camping". Just to make gear giving even harder, many companies use down that was plucked from live animals, they use harsh chemicals in manufacturing or they do not support public lands or sustainability with their profits. Make sure and do your research! TIP: Buy used! There are so many amazing products floating around in local gear consignment shops, Patagonia's Worn Wear, or on Amazon's Warehouse Deals!
Some of our favs:
#5 Guided Tours and Adventures
We promise this is more than a shameless plug for our guiding outfit! Seriously, winter is the perfect time to take someone on a guided adventure! Often companies experience a lull in business over the winter so their pricing and availability are way better! The popular National Parks are also crowd free, so you won't have to elbow another tourist for a picture of Yosemite Falls! If that isn't enough of an incentive then find a company that will drive you in their vehicle, so you won't have to worry about chain restrictions and unexpected road closures! TIP: Include gratuity when you purchase your trip, so your giftee doesn't feel the need to spend at the end of their awesome adventure!
Some of our Favs:
Echo Adventure Cooperative (Okay, that was shameless!)
We bet that no matter where your loved one's favorite place is someone has taken an awesome picture of it! If you can't buy them the adventure of their dreams then find an artist that has captured it, and then feel good knowing that the majority of nature photographers out there are also huge proponents of conservation and education! Tip: Always try to buy from the artist directly.
Some of out favs:
#3 Charitable Donations
There are the famous organizations like the Heifer Project and Oxfam International that allow you to gift a goat or a gaggle of geese (alliteration intended) in someone else's name and TreeHugger.com put together a really fun list of offbeat charitable gifts! We also recommend just looking around in your community for organizations that may need your assistance! Often times these local organizations can do the most with your dollar!
For example, Echo Adventure Cooperative recently gave a free trip to be auctioned at an Alateen event which is a support group for children of addicts and alcoholics. If you want something more "naturey" then try Nature Bridge; they are active in many communities connecting youth to the natural world and fostering environmental literacy! Double bonus, if you give to Nature Bridge by December 31st then PG&E will double your contribution! TIP: Steer clear of charitable donations to political leaning groups as holiday gifts unless you REALLY know the giftees politics!
#2 National Park Pass
For $80.00 you can get your adventurer a ENTIRE YEAR of access to 1000s of recreation areas all across the country and almost all of the proceeds go back into to National Parks. This gift is almost so awesome it would be disrespectful not to give it! TIP: There are also other passes for military, seniors, persons with disabilities and 4th graders, so look at all your options before you buy!
#1 Presence not Presents
We agree this one can come off a little... well, uhhh... dorky, but just hear us out! Does your loved one really need another titanium camp cup or would they prefer to use the ones they have on a camping trip with you!? The National Park Service just released their 2017 Free Park Entrance Days and for as little at $15.00 you can reserve advance wilderness permits in Yosemite National Park for the ultimate backpacking adventure with your boo thang! TIP: Find a trip that is doable to the least adventurous in the group.