With Christmas less than two weeks away, the countdown to opening gifts has begun.
Finding presents for the outdoor lovers on your list can be daunting, but we've found some items sure to please them:
Many are familiar with Wenger, the maker of the Genuine Swiss Army Knife. Now the company has come out with the Eiger ($159), a highly technical hiking boot that offers a durable, impact-absorbing Spydraflex system that reduces foot stress and has a molded toe ram and heel. Plus, it is waterproof and keeps your feet protected from the elements. The Eiger is available at www.amazon.com and www.wengerfootwear.com.
A great way to light up the trails and campsite at night is the compact Energizer Night Strike Light ($79.99). Don't let the small size of this lightweight flashlight fool you, as it is very powerful and features multiple lighting modes. The waterproof LED provides up to 40 lumens of light output and an eight-hour run time on maximum setting using one AA battery. Available at most Target, Wal-Mart, Home Depot and Lowe's stores, and www.cabelas.com. Get product information at www.energizerlightingproducts.com.
A decent fire starter is crucial to getting those flames going on a camping trip, and Coghlan's Magnesium Fire Starter ($5.96) is something every outdoorsman should carry in his or her pack. It provides enough shavings to start hundreds of fires. It can be purchased at Wal-Mart stores, www.amazon.com, www.cabelas.com and www.coghlans.com.
The Rogue 2 ICON ($47.99) is the ideal long-lasting LED flashlight, with an ergonomic design that is virtually indestructible. It produces a smooth, intense beam and provides hours of useful light with an output of 100 lumens. You can find it at most Fry's Electronics and Radio Shack stores and at www.opticsplanet.com.
On your next trip up the snowy hillsides, leave the inner tube or plastic sled at home and bring along the lightweight Zipfy ($39.95). This new-wave, 3.5-pound sled provides total control and safety for the downhill rider, with legs and feet in front, and the turning capability allows the rider to maneuver easily around obstacles. The sled is available at www.amazon.com and www.zipfy.com.
The go-anywhere Sherpa Chair ($29.95) has shoulder straps that allow it to be carried just like a backpack to keep hands free to hold other items, like a fishing pole and tackle box. It's the perfect lawn, camping, fishing, hunting or sporting chair. Details: www.sherpachair.com.
Cabela's "Outdoor Adventures" video game for Wii, Xbox 360, PlayStation 2 or 3 and PC ($19.99-$39.99) is the perfect gift for a hunter or angler, who can get a great simulated outdoor experience without leaving the house. It has North America's top 50 fishing and hunting destinations and offers realistic images on big-game hunting, fishing and bird shooting. Available at GameStop, Best Buy, Target and Wal-Mart, www.amazon.com and www.activision.com.
The Sitka Coldfront Jacket ($529) and Pant ($449) are the new revolution of concealment for hunters looking to blend into the woods and fields. A team of experts came up with a pattern that breaks up the human body to prevent prey like deer from recognizing the hunter as a predator. The breathable water- and wind-proof fabrics give a person the ultimate comfort in the worst of elements. Details: www.sitkagear.com.
The REI Shuksan jacket with eVent Fabric ($299) came in very handy on a rainy summer salmon fishing day off the ocean. The jacket offered complete waterproof protection, and the fabric's unique membrane structure allowed the sweat vapor to escape easily. This jacket is also a perfect fit for other outdoor activities such as skiing, hiking and camping. Details: www.rei.com.
Duracell's Smart Power group of Lithium Ion Rechargeable chargers ($19.99-$49.99) is the perfect solution to keeping your cell phone, iPhone, iPod, digital camera or Blackberry charged on your next remote outdoor adventure. The chargers are available at mass merchandisers, drug and hardware stores and www.duracell.com.
The Sperry Top-Sider Ventus ($110-$120) is a must for the avid sailor. The shoe offers maximum breathability and water compatibly in extreme conditions. The hydrogrip rubber outsole keeps your feet firmly planted to the deck. Available at www.sperrytopsider.com.