Love to camp? or are you camping for survival? Here is a list of products for those who live outside.
The REI brand is known for their high-quality gear for life outdoors. Carrying bulky gear can be cumbersome when traveling and can take up a lot of unnecessary space. REI specializes in selling high quality products, constructed with the lightest weight material, which are ideal for a variety of travel conditions. Whether you are shopping for camping & hiking gear or for outdoors fitness, REI’s products are durable and are weather resistant. Additionally, REI offers a life-time warranty with most of their products.
I was introduced to REI twenty years ago when planning for an international trip to Rome, Italy. The World Youth Day gathering of young adults included a week-long schedule of events leading up to the final event outside where all 2.5 million attendees camped outdoors overnight. As I was traveling for a couple of weeks to 5 countries, I was not sure how to pack for a camping trip on top of everything I had to bring with me. I discovered REI and instantly became enthused with all of the products they have available. Two of my favorite REI products I purchased then, I still have today: a light-weight sleeping bag and a travel pillow. These products were perfect to travel with on this trip and other trips. I’ve also used them extensively the last couple of years as I’ve been in housing transition and without housing the last couple of years living in my car in extreme hot and cold weather. With their compact and light-weight size, these travel bedding essentials take up minimal amount of space in storage. As an easy solution for any type of situation, these products are easy to wash and dry quickly. I’ve used them camping outdoors, at shelters on top of cots, mats, on beds in rooms I’ve rented for a few weeks, airbeds, and in my car.
The sleeping bag has a hooded area, comes with zipper pockets so you can stay warm and still stick your arm out of the sleeping bag. It also has an opening at the bottom of the bag which you can stick your feet through. The main zipper on the sleeping bag just broke earlier this summer after it’s long dedication to keeping me warm. REI offers a repair service available to fix gear, but I’m looking forward to my next sleeping bag! Although this exact sleeping bag is no longer available, REI has a comparable sleeping bag available as well as others to choose from. I also recommend the travel pillow, which is the neatest little pillow. It takes up minimum space and when the drawstring is pulled it compacts into a small sized ball. It is so soft and comfortable. Both of these items are washable. I throw them in the wash and just keep an eye on them in the dryer to preserve the material, but both dry quickly.
REI has since updated their product line with a similar sleeping bag and pillow. The REI Co-op Helio Sack 50 Sleeping Bag is perfect for travel and backpacking. With its insulation, this light-weight sleeping bag is perfect for 50 degrees (F) weather. The long side unzips into a quilt while the short side-zip works as both a vent and an armhole. The hood and neck of the bag have an adjustable drawstring to stay snug and warm. The water repellent (DWR) finish on the polyester shell resists moisture and stains. It compresses easily for storage. It is well-worth the $69.95 – $79.95 price.
REI sells a Therm-a-Rest Compressible Pillow that compresses to 1/5 of the size of the pillow which is 18″ x 14″. This pillow is similar to the compressible pillow I have which is no longer available. The Therm-a-Rest Compressible Pillow is a ‘must-have’ for any traveler. Take it on a camping trip, road trip, or as you travel on an airplane. It is washable, super-soft, and compacts nicely into it’s own bag. As soft pillow for under $30 that you can take anywhere this is a great buy for $26.95 – $29.95.
An additional product I recommend is the 32 fl. oz, Nalgene Wide-Mouth Water Bottle. I learned about this bottle when I was preparing to travel to Honduras on a mission trip. Ever since then I have continued to buy this bottle when I need a replacement. It comes in handy in the summertime when it gets hot here in Texas. I also make sure I keep it in the car. I have used it when I’ve travelled and for outdoor sports to stay hydrated when biking or hiking. Since I’ve been in housing transition and have been homeless this past year, I have two bottles which I keep in the car and fill up every day at least once. I save money by not buying bottled water as frequently and I can always make sure there is water in the car at all times and for any emergency. The bottle holds 32 oz of water and has marks on the size to indicate the ounces. With 2 of these bottles, I know I just need to drink at least 2 bottles a day to make sure I drink enough water for the day. The bottle is impact resistant made of thick durable plastic and has an attached screw cap. I add a straw to make it easy to sip from. The bottle retails at only $11.95. Stay hydrated by keeping one in your car, take it to work, or on your next trip!
If you are looking for quality, long-lasting outdoor gear, REI is a brand you can trust where you can find long-lasting, outdoor gear. Shop REI products at REI.com
Shop Amazon for Sleeping Bags, Therm-a-Rest and Nalgene Gear
TETON Sports Colbalt Sleeping Bag
Sleeping bag for temperature: 30 F to 60 F (-1 C to 15 C)
TETON Sports TrailHead Sleeping Bag for Adults
Sleeping bag for extreme temperatures: 20 F (-5 C)
TETON Sports Tracker 5 Lightweight Mummy Sleeping Bag
Sleeping bag for extreme temperatures: -5 F (-20 C)
TETON Sports LEEF Lightweight Mummy Sleeping Bag
Sleeping bag for extreme temperatures: -8 F (-22 C)
Therm-a-Rest Compressible Travel Pillow
Sizes: 16″ x 23″ (large), 14″ x 18″ (medium), 12″ x 16″ (small), 16.5″ x 27″ (X-large)
10 colors available to choose from
Nalgene Tritan Wide Mouth BPA-Free Water Bottle, 32 oz
25 colors to choose from
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