We’re not even to Thanksgiving, but the way things are going for 2020 (this is Friday the 13th to the consternation of all with Triskaidekaphobia) , we figured we shouldn’t wait too-long to talk about items you might want to consider gifting- or getting- to make time outdoors even more fun.
In today’s marketplace, things tend to come -and go- quickly, so if one of these strikes your fancy, you should get with it and get it ordered.
Note: nothing on this list should be construed as those essential to surviving our next 2020 apocalypse (which is either rivers turning to blood or a plague of frogs - if I recall my Sunday school lessons).
These are all intended to make your time outdoors more enjoyable. Everyone prefers a gift that says “enjoy” more than “hope you survive.”
The Microlite Java Press combines the qualities of a 14-ounce, insulated tumbler with a high-end coffee press. Simply add ground coffee, 200-degree water and stir. Four minutes or so later, simply open the top (important) press down on the inner container and your coffee’s ready.
Nothing’s quite as enjoyable as a fresh, hot drink on the increasingly cooler mornings afield. For many of us, that means a cup of fresh, hot coffee or tea.
So…how’s about stainless steel, vacuum insulated, BPA free, 14-plus ounce tumbler to keep your hot beverage hot for say, three and a half hours? That’s a lot of comfort in a stand, blind or tent.
Sounds good, right? So let’s amp up the awesomeness of our tumbler by making it a coffee press. Yep, a coffee press and mug combo.
The Microlite Java Press from GSI Outdoors is something backpackers and minimalist campers will really appreciate. If you’re a car or RV camper, it’s a nice addition to your camping gear as well (although you might want more than one if you travel with a companion).
At $34.95, it’s not cheap, neither is it a budget-buster. The caffeine-enriched campers on your list will thank you. Should you go for more than one in your camp kit, they’re even available in a selection of colors.
No matter how you camp, gear that saves space and offers multiple uses is always a winner.
The Escape HS Pot is one of those items that sounds, well, goofy. But it is exactly what it says it is: a collapsible 3-quart pot and a frypan.
The secret’s a collapsible silicon body that collapses on itself (think the collapsible drinking cup - upsized) and a frypan with a handle that tucks underneath when not being used.
Having I’ve used both in our RV, I know they work as advertised (although you should never confuse collapsible with hard-sided). From boiling eggs or making pasta in the pot to bacon-and-eggs in the frypan, they’ve worked great. And all camping gear should clean up this easily.
Cooking means pots and pans. Both take up valuable space. Being able to have a 3-quart pot and a frypan (top) that collapse to a fraction of their useful sizes (above) means they work whether you’re car or RV camping or backpacking (below).
It’s not an inexpensive piece of gear at $79.95, but with outdoor gear, smaller and lighter usually means more expensive.
If you’re a tent camper, you can use both side-by-side on a two burner camp stove. If you’re a backpacker, they’re both small enough to be used on your micro-stove.
After a long day of hunting or sporting clays, here’s a piece of gear that can minimize time spent cleaning your shotgun.
Clean Shot is described as a “patented shoot-through bore cleaner that effectively field cleans shotguns in an instant.” Note, please, that it says “field cleans” not “deep cleans”. Two different things.
How’s that work, you ask? Simple.
Clean Shot is essentially a high-pressure shotgun shell that fires cleaning “stuff” that wipes the bore clean as the shell passes through. Really grungy guns might need a second shot, but I’ve gotten by with a single shot after shooting 100-plus rounds.
Clean Shot is exactly what it implies. An especially designed shotgun shell that fires cleaning material- not shot- through our shotgun. And it works. But remember, it fires the cleaning materials just like a shotshell.
And I can’t emphasize too strongly the fact you’re still firing a round through a shotgun. You need to treat it exactly like any other shell- with respect.
You shouldn’t of this as the first thing you do after leaving the field. To be 100% safe, it should be the last thing you do before leaving the field.
When you’ve fully unloaded your gun, insert one of the Clean Shot shells, point the gun in a safe direction, and fire the cleaning load.
That’s it. It wipes dirty bores clean.
In most situations, you can then get by with the “oily rag in a baggie” for the outside of your gun and give everything a deep clean after you get home.
If you have a hard-core shotgunner on your shopping list -and need a product that says “thoughtful” without meaning “stupid expensive” you’ll want to consider this.
A four-pack of Clean Shot runs $10 in either 12 or 20 gauge.
If your local retailers don’t have it in stock (or you’re sheltering in place) you can order them direct at: https://huntegoltd.com/products/cleanshot-12-gauge?variant=1442138193944#shopify-product-reviews.
Three products to give you some suggestions for the outdoors enthusiasts on your list. Next time we’ll look at some main-gift (more expensive) suggestions.
Hey, it’s almost the weekend. That’s a good thing, right?