Looking for some unique gifts for hikers? You’ve come to the right place.
Wondering what to get the hiker who has everything? We’ve got some ideas for that list, too.
People who like hiking are generally drawn to the mountains. If you read no further, you really can’t go wrong with any gift that has mountains depicted on it.
But for today’s gift guide for hikers, we’ll focus on the items that are meant to be used while actually hiking.
We’ll explore gift ideas that will fit a range of budgets. Our list is based on what we use during our own outdoor adventures. So we recommend this list of gear because each item may be able to improve your friend’s or loved one’s hiking experiences. And put a smile on their face!
Wondering What Gifts to Buy the Hikers on Your List?
I started hiking at 18 when I left the Boston suburbs to attend a small college in Maine. I was immediately surrounded by stunning nature and tons of activity buddies ready to go exploring with me.
But I didn’t have any of the necessary gear for all the new activities I would soon be involved in. I can clearly remember figuring out what I was willing to borrow, and what I needed to buy for myself.
I share this to provide some perspective for those gift buyers out there who may not be hikers themselves.
Boots, or a backpack, might sound like a great and obvious gift for the hiker in your life. However, boots and backpacks should be properly fitted to each individual. That said, I do make one suggestion below if you’re searching for a daypack as a gift.
Honestly, a gift card might be a better fit than trying to pick out boots for your friend. Even if you’re not crazy about the idea.
Ok, enough of what not to buy. Now, let’s walk through some of the top gift picks for hikers, organized by budget. Whether you need a stocking stuffer or a grand gesture, we’ve got you covered.
Stocking Stuffer Gifts for Hikers (less than $25)
The following inexpensive gifts for hikers are sure to hit the mark. All of these hiking gifts under $25 are stocking stuffer sized, too.
Anyone logging the miles is bound to be in need of new (and really good) socks. Socks are a bit safer buy than boots, and are one of the best gift ideas for hikers, in my opinion.
There are so many hiking socks out there to choose from, but try to find something wool or a wool blend. My favorite brands are Darn Tough Socks and Bombas for durability, comfort and fit.
In addition to the fun designs, we love these socks for multiple reasons:
- Fast-action moisture wicking Merino wool
- Lifetime guarantee from Darn Tough
- Made in the USA
Darn Tough Men’s Hiker Micro Crew Cushion Socks
Buy from Backcountry
Bombas Women’s Hiking Calf Socks
Buy from Bombas
2. WATER BOTTLES
Hikers always need to carry plenty of water on their backs, and most hikers probably already have a bladder that integrates with their backpack. That said, extra water bottles can come in handy for mixing up an electrolyte drink, giving water to your dog, or just having some extra on hand.
Anything collapsible or lightweight is great. When hiking, we recommend something other than the stainless steel bottles. While popular and effective at keeping drinks cold (or hot), they’re too heavy to carry on a long hike.
Platypus is durable and my preferred brand for bladders and soft bottles. Plus, the SoftBottle comes in lots of fun designs to make your gift more personal and exciting.
Platypus is my preferred brand for water bladders and soft bottles. In addition to durability and easy of use, they offer a variety of designs. It's a perfect gift for campers and hikers.
- Clip gate handle easily straps on backpack
- Dual-lock cap prevents leaks
- Lightweight (1.6 oz.) and flexible
- BPA-free, Phthalate-free, BPS-free
- Made in the USA
While we’re talking about water bottles, let’s also talk about hydration. Because sometimes water isn’t enough. Your body needs sodium and potassium to regulate a normal fluid balance inside cells.
My partner used to drink Gatorade, now he drinks Key Nutrients. I’ve always opted for the low-sugar fizzy drink, Nuun. If buying hydration powder or tables as a gift, I recommend looking for a variety pack so your recipient is sure to get a flavor they love.
Another zero-sugar option you may want to consider is LMNT. Each small packet contains 6 grams of electrolyte drink mix with 1,000mg sodium, 200 mg potassium, and 60 mg of magnesium. The suggested mixture is one pack per 16-32 ounces of water. These packets are quite small and easy to stuff into a tiny pouch in your daypack.
4. FOOD STORAGE
My favorite part of prepping for a long hike is the snacks. But there’s nothing worse than a peanut butter and jelly sandwich that has squished out and stuck to everything in your backpack.
A sturdy, lightweight container with a strong seal is a great gift for the hiker on your list. Bonus points if they’re reusable like the Stasher food storage containers, which are even dishwasher safe.
Sturdy, lightweight containers with a strong seal to prevent leaking. We love them because (unlike common plastic zip bags) they're reusable and easy to clean.
- Microwave and dishwasher safe
- Available in different shapes and sizes
- BPA-free, BPS-free, food-grade silicone
5. PACK TOWEL
Pack towels are kind of a multi-purpose tool for hikers. You can sit on it, you can dry your feet off with it, you can wipe your sweat away with it. Very handy all around!
For the weight and space, it’s a must-have for most hikers, even on a short hike. They also double as a great travel towel if you’re going on vacation.
Lightweight microfiber towel that is super absorbent. It's also compact, which makes it great for hiking and camping.
- Soft microfiber made from 50% recycled material
- Quick-dry fabric
- Machine washable
- Available in various sizes and colors
The PackTowel Personal Towel is also available to order from Backcountry.
Great Gift Ideas for Hikers ($25 to $100)
If you’re looking for something a little more than a stocking stuffer, these gifts between $25 and $100 will each stand alone as a thoughtful and meaningful gifts.
6. WATER FILTRATION SYSTEM
We talked about the importance of hydration above. In addition to packing fresh water, it’s also a good idea for hikers to carry a means of filtering water in case of emergency. There are a variety options on the market.
Although gravity filters take time to work, they are affordable, easy to use and a lightweight option for hikers to carry.
With the Sawyer water filtration system, you can fill it up and leave it to allow gravity to move the untreated water through the filter. It’s also designed to allow the user to squeeze the pouch to increase the pressure and force water through when time is more limited.
A water filtration system is a must-have when hiking. We like the small Sawyer squeeze filter because it's compact and easy to use.
- Lightweight (3 oz) and portable
- 0.1 Micron inline filter removes bacteria, protozoa and microplastics
- 2 reusable BPA-free collapsible pouches
Anyone who loves being in the woods will surely also love lounging between the trees, right?
Eagle Nest Outfitters (ENO) hammocks come in two sizes: singlenest and doublenest. If you’re camping or backpacking, the doublenest is comfy for two adults, and it sure beats having to pack and set up two separate hammocks.
But if you’re just one human, the singlenest is plenty.
A lightweight, portable hammock that is available in either a 1 person (SingleNest) or 2 person (DoubleNest) size. The TravelNest includes the hammock and the straps.
The ENO Singlenest and Doublenest Hammocks are also available to order from Backcountry.
If the person you’re shopping for lives and hikes in a cold weather climate, a microspikes traction system will make a perfect gift. Well, assuming they don’t enjoy busting their keister repeatedly!
You only need to know their approximate shoe size, because these are sized small, medium, large, and extra large. This makes it a little easier to buy the right size.
Kahtoola Microspikes are also available to order from Backcountry.
9. NATIONAL PARKS PASS
Buy your friend or family member a gift they can enjoy all year long. A national parks pass is a great deal for an entire year of access to America’s most beautiful hiking destinations.
Your gift recipient will think of you every time they visit a park. Plus it fits inside a card to make your gift wrapping extra easy. Discounted passes are available for seniors and veterans.
National Parks Pass
Cost: $80 for an annual pass
Buy at NPS.gov
You’re getting many gifts in one with a swiss army knife, multi-tool, or LEATHERMAN. I have the “Wingman” model and it has 14 tools, making it absolutely worth its very lightweight in my pack. If the hiker on your gift list doesn’t have one yet, this is an excellent choice.
Having multiple multi-tools may not be that useful, so check to see if they have one first. Then again, it is nice to have a backup to keep in the car.
Multiple versions of the LEATHERMAN are available on the market. This one includes 14 tools, including knife, pliers, screwdriver, and a bottle opener, among others. I like that it's made in the USA (Oregon).
A small daypack is a great gift for someone who spends time outdoors and on the go. All Cotopaxi packs are bound to bring a smile to your face, but they’re also super functional.
Whether you choose this pack or another one, choose one between 15-30 liters in size, and be sure it has a hydration sleeve.
Luxury Gifts for Serious Hikers ($100+)
The following gifts range from $100 to $400, but at the highest price tag could quite literally save a life. You can’t put a price tag on safety, right?
12. TREKKING POLES
These poles are one-size (adjustable) and good for any hiker on your list. They provide added stability and maneuverability on the trail, with comfortable hand grips.
In addition, they can make a HUGE difference if your friend or loved one struggles with knee pain on the trail!
They’re easy to use or stash, and extend or pack away quickly. If the hiker in your life doesn’t already have poles, or if they need an upgrade, this is a high-quality pair of poles they will appreciate.
These lightweight, foldable poles are made with an aluminum shaft and EVA foam grips. Compatible with Z-Pole snow baskets. Please be sure to check the size needed based on height. Poles are available in 110cm, 125cm, and 140cm lengths.
13. WARM PUFFY JACKET FOR HIKERS
My puffy coat is my absolute favorite coat that I wear the most, hiking or not. I have the Patagonia Nano Puff and would definitely recommend it to anyone.
You can wear it on its own and it’s pretty warm. Or you can wear it under an outer jacket for extra warmth. It’s versatile, cute, and comfortable.
Plus it’s windproof and water-resistant, fair trade certified and uses recycled materials. What more could a girl ask for?
Patagonia Nano Puff Jacket
Learn More and Order From Backcountry
14. SATELLITE MESSENGER
These little messengers are best for those who are going a bit further afield, where cell phones may not work.
Having an SOS communication device with you provides excellent peace of mind. It’s a big investment, so they’re probably best reserved for the most adventurous on your gift list who will definitely use it regularly.
What to Get the Hiker Who Has Everything
If the person you’re shopping for already has all of these unique and useful gifts, a gift card might be the best bet. And don’t feel lame about it…you just want to be sure they end up with something useful for their adventures.
15. GREAT GIFT CARD IDEAS FOR HIKERS
We hope you’ve enjoyed exploring these gifts for someone who hikes and is leaving here with some more ideas about the best gifts for hikers.
Kristen Bates lives & works from her RV, primarily boondocking off-grid. She owns and operates a women-led travel company, Legit Trips. Kristen loves to explore new places and inspire others to do the same. If she’s not typing away on her laptop, she’s off on an adventure- hiking, biking, or SUP boarding. You can follow her RV adventures @PerpetualMoves and learn more about her travel company at LegitTrips.com.