Sports & Outdoors

Best Camping Gear: For Cooking, Car Camping, Couples, Winter, Dogs, & More

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An orange tent setup on a grassy hill overlooking a beautiful pristine blue lake, surrounded by pine trees.
You found the perfect camping spot! Did you remember to bring all your gear?

Camping is one of the best ways to de-stress and enjoy a fun and invigorating vacation. In addition to reconnecting with nature, one of the many great things about camping is after you’ve purchased your camping equipment, it can be a pretty inexpensive vacation, too. Read our camping gear review to find all the items you need.

Camping Gear List

Before you pack your bags, we’ve selected the best camping supplies and reviewed them in detail below so you won’t be left in the dark. Click on the item below to jump to that section, or read on to see them all.

Sleeping Bag | Sleeping Pad | Stove | Backpack | Chair | Cot | Grill | Lantern | First Aid | Tents | Coolers

Best Sleeping Bag: Coleman North Rim Extreme Weather Sleeping Bag Review

Coleman North Rim Extreme Weather Sleeping Bag

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The Coleman North Rim Extreme Weather sleeping bag is made of polyester and can be used in the single digits. It compresses down to a smaller size to take up less packing space. We want to note that this bag can be used for backpacking trips, but there are lighter and more compact bags out there.

What ultimately made it our pick for the best sleeping bag was the fact that you can get it for under $75, and it’s a 0-degree bag—that is extremely uncommon.

ProsCons
Fits most people up to 6’2″ Not the best for backpacking
Keeps you warm down to 0º F
5-year limited warranty
Bottom unzips for more ventilation when it’s warmer outside
Machine washable
Comfortable
Comfortable Very inexpensive

Pricing

Looking for a different style sleeping bag? Check out these other recommended products:

Best Sleeping Pad: Better Habitat Review

Better Habitat sleeping pad

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We were sent Kids and Single sleeping pads from Better Habitat in exchange for an unbiased review.

These sleeping pads can be used for many purposes, including guest beds, sleepovers for your kid’s friend, or camping pads. They are easy to unroll and comfortable, with 2 inches of memory foam for the Kids version and 3 inches for the Single and Twin versions.

ProsCons
1-year warranty It is not as compact as an air mattress or sleeping pad for backpacking
Durable, quality material
Rolls up easily and stores nicely
Waterproof cotton terry cover
Includes a travel bag

Pricing

There are also Kid’s and Single sizes available for less money. Click the link above to check pricing.

My Personal Experience With Better Habitat Sleeping Bag

I can’t tell you how often I’ve slept on an air mattress or had a guest sleep on one, only to wake up in the morning with it completely deflated. That is not an issue with these comfortable memory foam sleep pads.

We love how easy it is to transport them since they include travel bags with straps. So whether you’re car camping, staying at your grandparents, or crashing in a hotel but don’t want to splurge on an extra bed, these sleeping pads are easy to throw on your back and head out the door with.

Best Backpacking Stove: Fire-Maple “Fixed Star 1” Backpacking & Camping Stove Review

Fire-Maple "Fixed Star 1" Backpacking & Camping Stove

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You can’t beat this portable propane jet burner backpacking stove from Fire-Maple. It is made of aluminum alloy and stainless steel to withstand high temperatures and weight. Includes a 1-liter hard anodized aluminum cooking pot with a stainless steel handle. This stove includes a carrying case so you can toss it in your backpack and hit the trail. It works with most propane canisters except Coleman. Minimizes boiling time and weighs just 18 oz.

Whether you want to just camp, backpack, fish, or hunt, this is a great stove to have on hand in the Great Outdoors. From boiling water to drink, making fish stew, or brewing up some campfire coffee, this stove is a worthwhile addition to your camping gear.

ProsCons
Compact and lightweightFuel can not included
Stainless steel heat-proof handlePot is not dishwasher safe
Includes cooking pot
Insulating neoprene cover
Reduces boiling time by up to 30%
Cooks for 1 – 3 people

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Best Camping Backpack: TETON Sports Explorer 4000 Internal Frame Backpack Review

TETON Sports Explorer 4000 Internal Frame Backpack

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Most camping backpacks set you back a couple hundred dollars—not this one. You can go on a 2-5 day backpacking trip with this adjustable pack. Anyone from 5’1″ to 6’4″ can wear this 65-liter pack.

There are pockets, pouches, loops, and straps for your gear to fit into or hang from. The back has padding and airflow to make for a comfortable fit. Perfect for a long day hike or an overnight trip.

ProsCons
Limited lifetime warrantyNo bladder included
Waterproof zippers
Fits up to a 3-liter bladder
Numerous pockets, pouches, loops and straps
Fits various heights

Pricing

Best Camping Chairs: Alps Mountaineering King Kong Chair Review

Alps Mountaineering King Kong Chair

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Having a good chair to sit back in and enjoy the view is essential when you’re camping. It must be durable with all the packing and unpacking you’ll do with your gear. If you plan on fishing, birdwatching, crafting, or even sitting around the campfire, you want a sturdy chair that is comfortable, and that will not cause back or leg pain.

This chair can hold up to 800 pounds and has two mesh cup holders and a padded back and seat. Plus, it comes in over 10 color options. The carrying case and handles make it easy for even kids to carry. The downside? The fabric has no air vents so that you may sweat in this chair.

ProsCons
Weight capacity 800 poundsNot the most breathable fabric
2 cup holdersSome people do not like the hard plastic parts of the frame
Padded back and seat
Foldable design and included carry bag
Dimensions: 38″ x 20″ x 38″

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Best Camping Cot: Coleman ComfortSmart Deluxe Cot Review

Coleman ComfortSmart Deluxe Cot

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The Coleman cot is sturdy, and it fits up to 6’6″ people and up to 300 pounds. There are hundreds of reviews raving about the comfort, size, and dimensions of this cot, and we couldn’t help but choose it as the best cot for camping. It comes with a comfy mattress pad, bringing the comfort of home to your tent. Plus, it is elevated off the ground, keeping campers away from critters that crawl in the tent.

The unfolded dimensions are 80″ x 30″ x 15″, and the folded dimensions are 39.6″ x 30.7″ x 5.5″. Also comes in a standard size, which is 69″ x 25″ x 15″ when unfolded.

ProsCons
Fits heights up to 6’6″Is heavy to carry around
Weight capacity 300 pounds
1 year limited warranty
Thick, comfortable foam mattress
Folds and fits inside most car trunks

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Our Personal Experience With The Coleman ComfortSmart Deluxe Cot

I am a lifelong explorer of the outdoors. Camping is an activity I did as a kid, and then embraced with my own children. We have camped all over the deserts and mountains of the Southwest. Over the years sleeping the ground became impossible for me due to back pain. So, I purchased several cots to try. The Coleman cot is my top pick due to it’s durability. When laying on it I never feel like it is going to break or buckle.

Without the pad it is not as comfortable, but with a mattress, the cot makes for a truly supportive place to bunk. Since purchasing I have had far less pain and discomfort than when sleeping on the ground. It is heavy, and takes up room when packing, but it is well worth the effort. Placing two cots side by side makes a cozy double sleeper spot as well. This cot is a must have for any camping trip I make.

Danielle DeGroot, writer for Safe Smart Living and camping enthusiast

Best Camp Stove: Coleman Classic Propane Stove Review

Coleman Classic Propane Stove

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When you go camping, you want to be one with nature. That means cooking outside and enjoying every bit of the outdoors. This Coleman camping stove pays for itself and lasts a long time with proper care. You only need a suitable propane canister and a flat spot to set things up. Perfect for picnic tables or fireside cooking.

We all know how expensive eating out can be, but for about $50, you can have this stove, and it will make meals on meals on meals. Now, that’s an excellent investment for your camping gear list.

ProsCons
3-year limited warrantyReplacement parts a be hard to find
Wind block panels shield burners
2 burners fit a 12″ and 10″ pan at the same time
Easy to clean

Pricing

Our Personal Experience With The Coleman Classic Propane Stove

I have owned a couple of these camping stoves. The first one I had lasted about 15 years. It is easy to use and works reliably just about every time. I have cooked hundreds of meals on this stove. The windbreak panel makes it easy to use even in windy, wet weather. In fact, the stove did not break. We misplaced the pressure regulator. I have repurchased the same stove myself and as a gift for another person due to the ease of use and reliability.

Danielle DeGroot, writer for Safe Smart Living and camping enthusiast

Best Camping Grill: Texsport Heavy Duty Over Fire Camp Grill Review

Texsport Heavy Duty Over Fire Camp Grill

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If you’re camping and planning on cooking, why not take advantage of your campfire? This grilling rack sets over the campfire, so you don’t have to worry about propane, and instead, you can use the fire to cook your food.

This rack is durable enough to hold cast iron pans and comes in various sizes, so you’re bound to find one that will fit over your campfire. It also folds up easily for travel.

Tip: If you want to cook hotdogs or hamburgers directly on the grill, we suggest covering it with aluminum foil first.

ProsCons
Folds up The paint may chip off
SturdySome have rusted over time
Cook food in a pan or directly on the grill

Pricing

  • Medium : 16L x 12W x 6.75H
  • Large $47.83 : 24L x 16W x 8.25H
  • Extra large $47.83 : 36L x 18W x 8.75H

Best Lantern For Camping: Divine LEDs Review

Divine LED lantern

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There are no buttons for this one, which is interesting because instead, you pull the lantern “apart,” and the LEDs turn on. They offer a significant amount of light. The handles make it easy to carry, and I’ve even tied mine to my hammock. These are also perfect for around-the-house use, in the basement, as nightlights, and even to do auto repairs as they fit right under the hood.

I personally own this camping lantern from Divine LEDs and love it. It collapses to only 5 inches tall, which makes it easy to pack.

ProsCons
10-year warranty None found
Long battery life
Very bright
Compact

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Best First Aid Kit For Camping: Everlit 250 Piece Emergency Kit Review

Everlit 250 Piece Emergency Kit

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No one should ever take on the outdoor world without a first aid kit. This is especially true when camping, where there are multiple opportunities for injuries like burns, scrapes, cuts, and more. The Everlit kit includes 250 pieces of equipment and first aid gear to help in an emergency. It comes in a Mole EMT pouch that is water resistant. First aid supplies are some of the best camping gear for families to have on hand.

The Everlit kit includes everything needed to offer first aid to minor camping injuries, as well as emergency gear such as glow sticks, a multi-tool, and a rain poncho. With this kit, you will be prepared for when the unexpected hits. Restock with your supplies as needed. This is also a great place to keep any necessary medication campers need.

ProsCons
250 quality suppliesMulti-tool and flashlight are small
First-aid and emergency gear Does not include antihistamines or painkillers
Weatherproof Molle pouch
Compact and easy to carry
Designed by survival experts

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Video: Camping Hacks

Make your next camping trip easier by implementing some of these camping hacks.

Best Tents For Camping

In addition to camping gear, if you’re looking for the best tent to take on your camping trip, check out our in-depth reviews of tents.

Best Coolers For Camping

We’ve reviewed some of the best coolers for various occasions, including camping. Read our best cooler comparison article to see which will keep your food and drinks cold for days. For those who may need to replenish drinking water on the go, there are many backpacking water filter systems that are easy to use. If you seek more adventurous outdoor excursions, learn more in our in-depth reviews of adventure travel companies.

Which piece of camping equipment has changed your life for the better? Let us know in the comments!

Kimberly Alt

Kimberly is our home security expert and has been writing about security and safety since 2013, covering everything from security systems and home automation to identity theft protection, home warranties, medical alert systems, and more. She has personally tested hundreds of system components and interfaced with dozens of home security companies to find out what’s happening behind the scenes. Her work has appeared in many notable brands, including The New York Times' Wirecutter, Reader's Digest, Forbes, People, Woman's World, and Huffington Post. In 2018, she had her first child, which opened up a whole new avenue of security experience with baby gear. She wanted to purchase the safest items for her family. Kimberly received her Bachelor of Arts in multimedia journalism from Simpson College. Her natural curiosity helps her research as she seeks the truth when learning about, comparing, and personally testing products and services.
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