32 Outdoor Gifts for Dad (He Will Actually Love) [2019]

Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. UponArriving has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. UponArriving and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. 

Finding good outdoor gifts for dad can be an overwhelming experience because there are simply so many different options. But I’ve narrowed down a list of 32 different outdoor gifts that I think many dads would enjoy receiving. These gifts are for all different budgets and tastes. Some are serious while others are borderline gag gifts but might still be what you’re looking for. So here they are.

1. Survival grenade

I don’t think there’s on outdoorsy dad who wouldn’t appreciate a survival grenade. These come in all sorts of different shapes and sizes but they all come equipped with essential survival items. They might be a little gimmicky but you can’t deny the usefulness of all of the tools that these grenades are packed with.

This Holtzman’s survival grenade comes with 48 emergency items which include:

  • Around 45 ft. of 550 paracord
  • 2 ft. safety orange thin paracord
  • Compass
  • LED flashlight
  • Multi tool pocket knife
  • Flint Striker
  • 30ft of 12 lb Test Fishing Line and 4 Fishing hooks
  • 6 Waterproof Matches
  • And many more items. 

2. Hiking boots

An active outdoor dad is always going to appreciate some quality hiking boots. I recommend trying to find out what size and style that this particular dad prefers before buying a pair of hiking boots to make sure he’ll be comfortable with your choice.

If you have no idea about the his preference or you’d just like to surprise him then you can go with proven brands like Columbia which have waterproof hiking (which I believe are a must). But again, I’d recommended discreetly finding out his favorite brand and going with those.

Hiking
Photo by Kitty Terwolbeck.

3. A GPS locator

I write about a lot of off-the-grid places in my articles and especially in my eBook, Hidden Gems of the Western United States. And I’ve realized that if you want to explore many of these hidden gem type destinations then you need a GPS tracker to make sure that you don’t get lost and can help others find you if necessary.

These GPS locators don’t have to be expensive and you can get an affordable GPS tracker from a trusted brand like Bushnel for under $100.

4. Tactical Christmas Stocking

If you’re looking for a Christmas gift for the outdoorsman dad then look no further than the tactical Christmas stocking. The great thing about this is that it’s a unique gift that will certainly stand out and can be a lasting reminder to a dad how much he is appreciated year in and year out around Christmas time.

What’s also great is that these stockings are very cheap — you should be able to find one for around $12 or do so.

5. External phone battery

It’s becoming increasingly common for hikers to use their phones while in the outdoors. Whether they’re relying on GPS or pulling up route descriptions or simply taking video and photos, mobile phones are more useful than ever when in the great outdoors.

The issue is that utilizing these features can quickly drain the battery of a smart phone. But there are a lot of different external battery packs that you can purchase on your phone so that even on a long hike that takes all day your phone can maintain power along the way.

You can find these external battery packs for under $30 at many places so they’re a great gift for someone on a budget.

iPhone 6s funda Smart Battery Case – Lanzamiento de Apple
Photo by iphonedigital.

6. Hiking socks

You might think gifting a pair of socks is pretty lame which it usually is. But a nice pack of high quality hiking socks is a welcomed gift for just about any man who enjoys the outdoors. Personally, my favorite outdoor socks are People Socks, which come in ultra-comfy wool which helps to keep my feet nice and dry during hikes.

They are pretty much the only hiking socks that I purchase now and they are made in the USA!

Hiking
Photo by Lisa Williams.

7. Leatherman Wave

Leathermans are great gifts for any dad even if they aren’t what you’d consider a “true outdoorsman.” They can be used for all sorts of different purposes and they are reasonably priced with plenty of options that stay under $100.

The Leatherman Wave is one of my favorites and comes with 17 tools including:

  • 1. Needlenose Pliers
  • 2. Regular Pliers
  • 3. Hard-wire Cutters
  • 4. Wire Cutters
  • 5. Wire Stripper
  • 6. 420HC Knife
  • 7. 420 HC Serrated Knife
  • 8. Saw
  • 9. Spring-action Scissors
  • 10. Ruler (8 in | 19 cm)
  • 11. Can Opener
  • 12. Bottle Opener
  • 13. Wood/Metal File
  • 14. Diamond-coated File
  • 15. Large Bit Driver
  • 16. Small Bit Driver
  • 17. Medium Screwdriver
leatherman wave
Photo by Flavio Serafini.

It’s no wonder that it’s their most popular multitool and an international best seller. It’s compact and lightweight and so it’s a perfect companion to bring along when exploring the great outdoors or just bringing around wherever you go (except the airport — although there are TSA compliant multi-tools.

8. Yeti Hopper

A portable cooler can be just what a dad needs who likes to spend time outdoors. Whether you’re boating, fishing, hunting, camping, or even tailgating — having a portable cooler can be extremely handy.

The Yeti Hopper is one of the most highly rated portable coolers and features a HydroLok Zipper which has a a design borrowed from HazMat suits, so you know this thing is going to be able to hold its liquid. The Hopper comes in different colors and different sizes but you can find models that hold around 18 cans of beer or 10-12 bottles of water.

And while they are pricey but will absolutely keep your beverages cold for a longgg time.

9. Chill-O-Matic

The Chill-O-Matic is an ingenious product that will get a room temperature 12 oz drink ice cold in 60 seconds flat!

It works 240 times faster than a conventional freezer and should fit any standard sized beer or soda can. To function, it only needs two AA batteries and it’s lightweight and easy to bring around to events. 

10. Indestructible flashlight

So most dads have at least one flash light and many others have flash lights designed for the outdoors. But not every dad has a flashlight like the Coast Polysteel 600 that’s made to take a beating on a regular basis.

It’s known for being water proof, drop proof, and crush proof so even for the most reckless male, this option could be suitable. It outputs a bright 710 Lumens on hight and 73 Lumens on low and the beam distance on high can hit 810 feet. The runtime on high is 2 hours and 15 minutes while on low it can last for up to 40 hours! It also comes with a nice sleek black appearance. 

11. Fish sandals

Don’t lie — you know some dad somewhere will appreciate these amazing fish sandals.

I’d honestly buy them for my own pops but I’m pretty sure he’d wear them out to the grocery store and my mom would have to deal with that on a regular basis. But these are still pretty much the perfect gift for the right kind of fish-loving dad out there.

These come in different colors and sizes so imaging walking around as one uniformed family of fish feet!

12. A high quality backpack

I used to skimp on backpacks but found myself constantly needing a new backpack because the straps would wear down or break and the backpack’s material would degrade. I soon realized that when it comes to backpacks for the outdoors, you usually get what you pay for.

So I suggest that if you’re going to get a backpack for a father you love, don’t go with something unproven. Instead look to trusted brands like the Northface and Patagonia. These backpacks are usually built to withstand the test of time and it’s why they receive such great reviews most of the time.

The North Face Recon Backpack is a great option for someone looking to keep their spend limit close to $100. The backpack comes with a laptop sleeve, tablet sleeve, organization and hydration port, and FlexVen injection-molded shoulder straps. It’s truly a multi-purpose bag that can be used for all sorts of purposes and it should be able to take a good beating over time. 

13. Ultraskiff 360

Okay so this is definitely the most expensive gift on the list. But maybe you have some siblings who can go in on it with you and help to spread the cost around and make it a little bit more affordable. The Ultraskiff 360 is the ultimate fisherman’s platform/boat.

It’s propelled by a 12volt electric trolling motor and most new users find it easy enough to use even if they don’t have any prior boating experience. You can check it out in the video below.

13. Lifestraw

You never know when you might need to drink your own… lifestraw. I recall getting lost in the backcountry in Yosemite National Park a few years ago and being in desperate need of water — I would have done anything to have a life straw with me!

Lifestraws are very cheap at $15 and will provide 264 gallons (1,000 liters) of safe drinking water without using chemicals/iodine. It’s proven to remove “99.9999% of bacteria including Escherichia coli (e-coli), campylobacter, vibrio cholera, pseudomonas aeruginosa, shigella, salmonella” so you can’t go wrong with it. 

There’s also no shelf life so your outdoor father can put it away until he’s ready to use it on the next outing. And even if your dad’s not an outdoorsman, these are handy to keep with you if you’re going to be on a road trip or want to take extra precautions in case of an emergency.

P1090143

14. GoPro

GoPros are great because they are very easy to use and you are extremely durable.

You can bring them with you scuba diving, on vacations, hiking trips, sporting events, the list goes on. And now they capture video in 4K and some even have 360º capabilities. You really can’t go wrong with a GoPro.

15. Helinox Chair One

Almost every dad I can think of could use a quality lawn chair. Whether its watching little ones playing football or baseball or just relaxing at a campsite, a quality lawn chair is a valuable asset for many fathers out there.

The Helinox Chair One is a great options because it’s super light but still very comfortable. If you’re looking for something that’s easy to lug around then this chair offers you that feature. And for being so lightweight, it’s also surprisingly sturdy and high quality. It’s really the perfect balance between portability and durability.

Bikepacking microadventure Limburg
Photo by Kitty Terwolbeck.

16. Outdoor speaker

One of the biggest reasons for spending time in the great outdoors is to avoid technology and get away from it all. But sometimes you still want to bring some of your tunes with you and enjoy them out in nature.

The APIE Portable Wireless Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker IPX6 is perfect outdoor speaker who wants to play their music without worrying about ruining their electronics. This wireless speaker has a range of 33 feet and a 2200mAh battery that can hold a charge for up to 10 hours of playtime depending on the music volume level.

17. Hammock

Not many things are more relaxing than enjoying a hammock in the outdoors.The fantastic thing about hammocks is that not only are they ultra-comfy but they can also be ultra-cheap like this Farland Outdoor Camping Hammock.

Hammock
Photo by jchapiewsky.

18. Coleman Classic Propane Stove

For all of those foodie dads out there who don’t want to resort to a granola diet while camping. Coleman offers some of the most popular propane stoves for campers. They come with wind Block panels which help shield the burners from winds which would normally turn your cooking experience into a frustrating one.

It comes with 20,000 total BTUs of cooking power and can fit a 12″ and a 10″ pan at the same time. So if you’re trying to cook up some meals for a few people then your life just got made easier with this camping grill.

The burners are also independently controlled so you can throw two separate dishes on the grill with different cook times and still be okay (assuming you’re the multi-task type of camping chef). the assembly time is about three hours but you can pay extra to have an expert assemble the grill for you.

These stoves go for close to $40.

Camping Stove
Photo by The Tedster.

19. Etekcity Mini Camping Stove

If you think that Coleman stove is a little too bulky then consider going with a mini-camping stove. You’re going to have to contend with the elements like wind a lot more but this type of mini camping stove is ultra-portable and can be perfect for things like boiling up water.

20. Camping Cookware

You can’t have a camping stove without come cookware.

The good news is that camping cookware can be very easy to find at reasonable prices. I like the Yodo Anodized Aluminum Camping Cookware Set that’s perfect for four to five people. The pots are made from Hard anodized non-stick aluminum which makes them easier to clean (which any dad would truly appreciate).

The Morning Grind
Photo by Logan Brumm.

21. The NORTHblu Pop-up tent

Some dads just need a simple solution to camping: a pop-up tent. These involve minimal set up effort and can still get the job done for a couple of people. The dimensions on this tent are : 87″ x 60″ x 43″ and the tent can fold into the carrying bag which comes with a 30″ diameter.

The tent is made from 90T polyester fabric and there is no ground tarp required which further lessens the load you’ll have to carry. The tent comes with a large entrance door with mosquito net and three ventilation holes along with one inner side bag.

The only major drawback to this pop-up tent is that it is only made to withstand light drizzling. If you’re going to be camping somewhere for an extended amount of time and there’s a chance of a good down pouring you might want to go with something that’s much more protective or purchase a rainfly for the tent.

Despite the lack of protection agains the elements, this tent is a solid option based on the price and convenience.

22. Thule Sapling Elite Child Carrier

What’s better than a dad hiking with their little one? How about being able to strap your kid on to your back so you don’t have to worry about them getting exhausted when you’re exploring the great outdoors?
 
The Thule Sapling Elite Child Carrier comes with a removable backpack and large zippered compartment good for storing diapers, clothes and other gear. It’s fully adjustable so that you make a transition between parents and it also comes with a hydration sleeve stores up to a 3L reservoir. And lastly, it also has a viewing mirror so you can keep an eye on your child as you the trails.

23. Hiking pants

When it comes to hiking pants for dad, there’s a clear winner in my book. Columbia convertible pants are definitely the way to go. These are durable hiking pants that receive great reviews from customers.

It’s often the case that when trekking your body temperature changes along with the environment and so you need pants that are versatile and can keep you comfortable regardless of how warm or cool you get.

The Columbia Men’s Silver Ridge Convertible Pants accomplish this take by allowing you to remove the lower portion of the pants and convert them into shorts. The pants come with Omni-Wick advanced evaporation technology which helps to pull sweat away from the body and Omni-Shade UPF 50 sun protection. And you can also choose from a nice selection of colors depending on the father’s preference. 

You can get these pants for under $50 which is pretty reasonable considering the level of quality that Columbia is known for.

24. An emergency flashlight

You never know when a flashlight might not work or when you might have accidentally installed faulty batteries that don’t have the juice to power your flashlight. So it’s a good idea to have a back-up plan where you can use a solar-powered light in emergency situations.

The ThorFire is a versatile emergency light that is both solar & hand crank powered, so there’s no batteries needed. And you don’t have to worry about exhausting yourself with effort to get this light to come on and stay on since just 1 minute cranking will generate enough power for 1 hour.

For solar charges, one hour of direct sunlight will provide120 minutes of light or 140 Minutes of flashing.

The light is also IPX6 Waterproof and submersible up to 45 feet so you don’t have to worry about losing your light even in some of the toughest conditions. So whether it’s needed for outdoor exploring or just in case of emergency, I think any dad would appreciate the gift. You can find the ThorFire for as low as $15. 

25. A trail stool

Sometimes all you need is a small trail stool to give you a place to get off your feet and relax while in the outdoors. These are great because they are compact and usually very lightweight. This trail stool folds up to the size of a rolled-up newspaper and is durable up to 275 pounds. the total weight of the stool is only 2.2 pounds. 

26. Stanley Classic Vacuum Bottle

Just seeing a Stanley Classic Vacuum Bottle reminds me of my dad. These are tried and true and come with vacuum insulation that can keep drinks hot for up to 24 hours, cold 24 up to hours, or iced up to 120 hours. It’s like this thing has super powers. 

These are rust-proof, leak proof with insulated lids, and come with life warranties so they are certainly worth the money. I don’t think any list for dad gifts is complete without a Stanley Vacuum Bottle on it.

27. A sleeping bag

Any father could use a good sleeping bag. And it’s not hard to find one with decent quality for a reasonable price. The key to finding the right sleeping bag is to look for one that will suite the environment he’ll be camping in.

A sleeping bag for below zero temperatures is going to be too hot for someone camping the middle of Texas durning the summer.  There are lots of options to choose from and here’s one of the most highly rated sleeping bags on Amazon right now.

28. Down jacket

Down jackets also called puffer jackets are great for being outdoors in cold climates. I recently spend some time in Norways chasing the northern lights and if it wasn’t for a down jacket, I think I would have turned into a statue of ice.

Many of these can be quite stylish, too. I personally like the down jackets from Columbia with a 100% polyester shell. These jackets are pretty versatile so they could be used for hiking and outdoor activities or worn when traveling around in colder climates.

29. CamelBak M.U.L.E. Hydration Pack

You can’t go wrong with a CamelBak.

They are well designed and from a respected brand, so any dad who sweats and drinks would appreciate the pack. Whether you’re running, hiking, biking, or doing any type of physical exertion, CamelBaks are great products that can keep you hydrated easily with its magnetic tube trap.

The CamelBak M.U.L.E. Hydration Pack comes in different sizes and colors and the 100 ounce pack linked here holds approximately three liters of H2O. 

30. Pocket Folding Knife

Dads need knives.

Sometimes it’s for fishing, hunting, bushcrafting, or other activities and sometimes it’s just nice to have a good quality pocket knife at your disposal. This spring assisted knife is a multi-purpose knife that’s easy on the budget at under $15 and has received fantastic reviews online. If you really don’t know what to get an outdoorsy dad for Father’s Day, then going with a nice knife can be a solid option. 

31. Headlamp

A headlamp can be used for hiking, camping, exploring caves, and other outdoor activities like photography. They are even handy when working on projects in dim areas like a garage or crawling around in an attic.

Headlamps come in all sorts of different varieties but you don’t have to spend a fortune to find one of good quality. The Cobiz Brightest 6000 Lumen CREE LED Work Headlight is a great option that is waterproof and great for all sorts of activities, even running. 

32. Gift card from REI

If you just can’t make your mind up despite all the hours I spent trying to make things easy on you it’s still understandable… I guess ;).  But seriously if you can’t find the right gift then consider just going with a gift card from a store like REI. Then he’ll be able to pick out whatever his outdoorsy hear desires.

Final word on outdoor gifts for dad

You can’t really go wrong with most of the gifts (ok so maybe the fish sandals could be an issue). Try not to overthink your gift and don’t underestimate how useful some of the cheaper items can be to someone who frequents the outdoors. And if all else fails you can just purchase a gift card and keep things simple.

Cover Photo: BLM.

UponArriving has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. UponArriving and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.