Father’s Day (June 16, 2019) is just around the corner and we know it can hard to figure out what to buy for those gadget-loving, mountain-climbing, triathlon-crushing dads in your life. That’s why we gathered up a list of our favorite gifts for outdoor-loving dudes. We based these ideas on recommendations from REI staff and customers, and we also included some our favorite items from our gear coverage this year. So whether you’re looking for a gift for a just-getting-into-new-adventures dad, or you need an epic, “everyone goes in on it” gift from the entire family, we’ve got you covered.
For the Sustainable Dad
Ditch those single-use water bottles and pick up a reusable Hydro Flask water bottle for dad instead. The Hydro Flask is a versatile, durable, stainless steel water bottle that keeps hot liquids hot for up to six hours, and cold liquids cold for up to 12 hours. It’s heavily sealed, perfect for bringing a cold drink on the trails or the slopes, and doesn’t retain flavors like some of the other water bottles we’ve tried over the years. All in all, a solid gift choice!
For the Dad Who Runs or Hikes After Work
This little headlamp packs a series punch: it gives you all the features you need in a good headlamp, and nothing you don’t, all for the right price. If the dad in your life likes to run, hike or camp after dark, this is a great gift: The Spot has a comfortable headband, and the PowerTap™ feature allows you to flip through multiple lighting options. The Spot also has a red night-vision mode and a strobe setting, and it’s lightweight and water resistant.
For the Metrics-Obsessed Father
We think this pricey watch is well worth the purchase because it offers a best-in-class option for people who love to track their own fitness metrics, and it comes equipped with fantastic GPS features. The full-color GPS map on the Fenix works well for trail runs and hikes, with breadcrumbs that help prevent the user from getting lost. The watch contains easy-to-upload routes from all over the world, too. After a workout, the dad in your life will be able to pull up reports with dozens of metrics, like exertion, heart rate, steps, mileage, pacing, effort, calories and more. And, if he needs it, the Fenix has a compass, gyroscope and barometric altimeter, too.
For the Camping Enthusiast
If dad has already planned several camping or backpacking adventures for the family this summer, consider adding the LuminAID PackLite Lantern to his gear kit. While you can use this lantern anywhere at any time, it’s best used on backpacking trips because it weighs less than half a pound, casts a bright light and can be powered by a built-in solar panel. It’s also a clutch piece of gear for setting up camp or cooking dinner after dark.
For the Musically-Inclined Padre
Music anywhere, any time? Yes please! The JBL Flip 4 is waterproof, portable and easy-to-charge speaker. It wirelessly connects to up to two devices at once and has a battery that can support up to twelve hours of music when it’s fully charged. When it comes to bringing music wherever dad goes, this gift is a no-brainer.
For the Winter-Loving Dude
Patagonia’s Nano Puff jacket is a synthetic-alternative down jacket that offers insulation, even in wet weather. During testing for our down jacket gear guide, we were obsessed with this jacket—and we think it’s an especially great gift for dads who like to adventure in cold, wet climates. The Nano Puff is lightweight, warm, dries quickly, fits true to size and compresses easily into a backpack. Take it camping for cold nights, or stuff it into dad’s pack for his next mountaineering adventure. Bonus points: This jacket is made with recycled materials.
Smartwool 250 Base Layer Top & Bottoms
For the Alpine-Adventure Loving Dad
MSRP: $100 (Top), $95 (Bottoms)
The Smartwool 250 base layer top and bottoms offer a simple but luxurious layering experience that can make a big difference on the mountain. The Smartwool 250 line is made with merino wool, which will help keep dad warm while also wicking sweat for the perfect temperature balance, no matter the climate. Merino wool also wicks smells, so dad can wear these garments several times in a row before washing them. Whether he likes to ski, hike, camp, snowshoe, mountaineer or just relax around the house, dad will appreciate these cozy layers year-round.
For the Travel-Savvy Papa
A duffel bag is a good tool for camping, traveling and storing gear, and we think the Patagonia Black Hole is the best option out there. It’s durable, offers a divided internal pocket for holding small items, and has enough room to pack a week’s worth of clothing. If you’re looking for a gift for a guy who spends a lot of time traveling, this bag is a really good choice. Many of the customers who reviewed this product on REI.com said they’d had—and loved—this bag for more than five years!
For the Dad Who Cycles to Work
If the dad in your life lives in a rainy place, the struggle of biking to work can be real! Enter the Showers Pass Transit Bike Pants, which fit nicely over work pants or jeans and keep your legs completely dry. They’re made with three-layer, breathable fabric so dad won’t arrive at work covered in sweat, and they have cinch straps to keep the pant legs away from the chain and crank. They’re even decked out with reflective trim for low-light visibility.
For the Weekend Warrior Dad
Hiking papas will love this little daypack, which sits away from the low back enough to allow for extra ventilation and has room for day hike necessities, like snacks and extra layers. It also has an extra sleeve to hold a hydration reservoir. If dad plans to carry a kiddo on his hike, Osprey offers another good option: the Poco AG Child Carrier.
For the Nature-Loving Father with Creaky Knees
Trekking poles help to reduce the impact of each step on the joints, especially the knees and hips. Dads who hike a lot or those with joint issues will appreciate the Black Diamond Trail Ergo Cork poles, which are lightweight but durable, and have comfy handles and an easily adjustable length. You can add caps to the tips for walking on pavement, or baskets for hiking in the snow.
For the Super-Chill Dad Who Loves Backyard Naps
Give dad the gift of chill with an Eno SingleNest Hammock. This hammock is lightweight, meaning it’s easy to pack into his bag for a trip to the park or a long hike. It has a maximum capacity of 400 pounds, it’s made with soft nylon fabric and it has room for even the tallest dudes. Straps are sold separately.