• Great gear gifts for outdoor lovers

    Great gear gifts for outdoor lovers!

Last-minute shoppers, rejoice! Can Geo editors have compiled this list of five affordable holiday gift ideas for just about every nature-lover on your list, from phone addicts to night owls and everything in between.

For the handyperson: Leatherman Signal multi-tool

Photo: Aaron Kylie/Canadian Geographic

“A multi-tool designed for adventure” proclaims Leatherman of its new Signal. With 19 tools — needle-nose and regular pliers, knife, saw, hammer, bit driver, wrench, whistle and sharpener, to highlight a few — in an 11.43 centimetre-long (closed), 212.6-gram package, it’s sure to have a feature for the task at hand — or at least to MacGyver it. And while it has the heft and seeming simplicity renowned of Leatherman, some gadgets may require secret agent-like intellect to manipulate into, or out of, position. Still, if you’re in the market for a reliable do-it all device, the Signal will have you covered. — Aaron Kylie

Leatherman.ca, $124.95

For the free-range friend: MSR TrailShot Microfilter

Whether you’re jogging around the park or rambling through the backcountry, it’s important to stay hydrated. The TrailShot Microfilter from Mountain Safety Research (MSR) lets you drink directly from almost any source without having to worry about ingesting harmful bacteria or particulate, making it a convenient and lightweight alternative to packing along a heavy water bottle on your trail run or day hike. Just dip the end of the hose into your water source, squeeze the flexible silicon bulb to draw water into the filter, and drink. You can also use the TrailShot Microfilter to refill bottles on longer trips. Of course, when it comes to identifying potential water sources, common sense should still apply, but in case it needs to be said, the filter won’t do anything for salt water or tailing ponds. — Alexandra Pope

Mountain Equipment Co-op, $59.00

For the casual camper: Coleman Conquer Twist 550L LED Lantern

Photo: Coleman Canada

Car campers, this is the lantern for you. It’s big, gives off a good amount of light (550 lumens at its highest setting) and has a handy BatteryLock system that disengages batteries, allowing you to keep the same batteries for years (a good thing, given this baby takes four D batteries) and preventing corrosion that can damage the lantern. Despite its size, the Coleman Conquer Twist lantern is relatively lightweight and, with a beam distance of nine metres on the highest of four light settings, it’s the perfect accompaniment to a nighttime hike to the bathroom or the bonfire. Simply twist the top of the lantern to toggle through different light settings (the one downside to the “twist” function is that it’s a little loud). The lantern plastic, a feature that can sometimes limit durability, but the Conquer Twist can survive an impact of up to two metres, is water resistant and comes with a three-year warranty. — Michela Rosano

colemancanada.ca, $54.99

For the night owl: Ledlenser MH10 headlamp

Photo: Ledlenser.com

I recently became a headlamp devotée for a most un-adventurous reason: I’m teaching myself to quilt by hand, and no overhead fixture compares to a headlamp for spotlighting close, fine needlework. The MH10 from European brand Ledlenser has taken the basic concept of the hands-free flashlight and improved on it by adding a powerful 600-lumen LED bulb with a rechargeable battery, a transportation lock to prevent the light from accidentally turning on and draining said battery, and an illuminated red tail-light so you can be seen from behind should you decide to actually take the headlamp outdoors at night. The initial setup is a bit complex, and I found the Ikea-esque pictorial instructions somewhat difficult to follow, but once I figured it out I was impressed by the MH10’s comfortable, lightweight feel, long battery life (a full charge can last up to 120 hours in low intensity mode) and easy one-touch intensity adjustment. — Alexandra Pope

Ledlenser.ca, $99.95

For the stylish adventurer: Stanley Happy Hour System

Photo: Nick Walker/Canadian Geographic
 
At the risk of saying too much, I’ve shaken up more than a few cocktails in my time and I’ve thoroughly tested the “Stanley Happy Hour System SS” at home, at the lake and on a hike or two. It may not have the chic brushed steel or copper look that would make you want to proudly display it on your bar, but it is functionally the best cocktail shaker I have ever used. Besides the fact that all elements — a pair of tumblers and a citrus reamer (juicer) — fit neatly together for easy transportation, the rubber O-rings built into the sturdy design mean that not a drop of your liquor and bitters will leak out, either mid-shake or in your backpack. If cocktails just aren't your thing, the set can also be used to shake up iced coffee, and in a pinch, the double-walled steel tumblers provide enough insulation for use with hot coffee or hot chocolate. — Nick Walker
 
 
For the phone addict: Hitcase Shield 
 
Photo: Hitcase.ca
 
The Hitcase Shield is a Canadian-designed case for iPhones that is shockproof and waterproof, offering water depth and drop protection for up to two metres. Easy to put on and remove, the case has the convenience of port access and Apple Touch, as well as volume/silence control. I took it to the test with my iPhone 6 during a lengthy hike up Dunn’s River Falls in Ocho Rios, Jamaica, a hike  known to soak visitors from head to toe as they complete the moderately difficult trek up steep and slippery rocks. When I inevitably dropped my phone, it didn’t suffer any damage thanks to the Hitcase’s aluminum frame, plastic screen protector and glass shield that kept my phone’s camera lens free from scratches. The case’s slim build (Hitcase calls it the world's thinnest waterproof iPhone case) made it easy to hold and store without the bulk or weight that often come with other protective phone cases. Taking photos with this case was relatively easy – the ShockSeal plastic around the aluminum frame allowed me to get a good grip on my phone and kept it completely dry inside. — Kendra Stieler
 
Hitcase.ca, $49.99