Do you stare longingly at photos of epic mountainscapes, beautiful forests, and gorgeous waterfalls? Do you look at travel blogs and say, “I wish I could do that?” Do you want to try new things, get outdoors, see amazing places, and feel adventurous? Wonder what gear you need to get started? Here’s our favorite gear that we started with when we first began camping and hiking.
We are minimalists. While we’d love to have all the latest gear and gadgets, we know that if we waited until we could afford everything, we’d never get started. Here’s our favorite gear that we started with when we first began camping and hiking. Check out our 10 Tips For Living A More Adventurous Life to help you create more memories as a family.
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Gear For Hiking
- Shoes– A good pair of tennis shoes are important. We love La Sportiva Bushido. So much so that Gabi, Isabelle, and I have matching pairs—yeah, it can get confusing when it’s time to find who’s is whose. Victor is on his fourth pair and Danny even traded in running in Vibrams to run in these. I really like that we can run and hike in these shoes (it saves storage space in our RV). It’s too bad we aren’t badass enough for La Sportiva to sponsor us because their Katana and Mythos climbing shoes are my favorites also!
- Hiking Sticks– We don’t always carry these, however, they were a big help in motivating Tatiana and Jiraiya to hike when they were younger. Because we stay on top of our training regimen, we don’t really need them for stability when we hike, but most people can benefit from using them. If you have any knees discomfort when hiking, you should use hiking sticks and improve your lower leg strength and flexibility with Vic’s Coaching Series—I promise if you do his program, your knee pain (and any other joint pain) will disappear.
- Backpack– I love our REI Flash 22 pack, however, it was out of our price range when we first started. Instead, when we first started hiking, I got each kid one of these 20-liter, lightweight, foldable backpacks and loved them. They were perfect for holding the bare necessities—a jacket, a snack, a water bottle, and a phone or camera—and the kids liked that they each had their own color.
Gear For Camping
- Cooking– I love being able to cook outdoors! While we typically have our RV and can use the stove in it, I prefer to cook outdoors when we are in a campground. I use this cooktop, but when we were in Europe, I saw a lot of #vanlifers using this small propane stove. When we tent camped in Europe for 52 days, we carried two of these Pocket Rockets because they take up so little space in a backpack. Don’t forget your camping pots and cooking utensils. Unless you are hopping on a plane (if so you’ll need to track down a sporting goods store at your final destination) remember to pack a propane cylinder or isobutane canister and lighter, .
- Coffee– I never travel without coffee! I like using the JetBoil Flash Java Kit and this coffee grinder because it collapses down small to pack. For greater health benefits, try to always grind your coffee right before you make it!