Here’s What Tech-Minded Folks Bring Into the Wild
For some, camping is all about experiencing the great outdoors with as little attachment to the modern world as possible. These adventurers hope to completely escape the ever-extending web of electronic connections. Others (ourselves included) adopt a less stringent approach. We non-traditionalists delight in the opportunity to utilize (or show off) our latest and greatest camping tech acquisitions. Why suffer in the rugged wilderness when it only takes a few gadgets and gizmos to recreate homestyle comfort? And with the newest innovations in camping gear, it’s incredibly convenient for comfort-seeking individuals to unobtrusively find solace in the wild. We aren’t suggesting to bring your TV with you. But the right bluetooth speaker wouldn’t hurt.
The best pieces of high-tech camping gear walk a fine-line between convenience and excess. When certain pieces of equipment achieve this perfect balance, the results will delight even the most strictly “unplugged” campers. The trick is to blend new technology into traditional gear, while creating a seamlessly intelligent user-experience. With that in mind, we assembled an entire tents worth of our favorite high-tech camping gear to help you triumph during your next outdoor adventure.
Our Favorite High-Tech Camping Gear for 2017
BioLite CampStove Bundle – $199.95
When creating a list of camping gear essentials, a thermoelectric generator isn’t usually at the top. Sure, you might have your favorite portable propane stovetops or maybe a nifty outdoor tea-set. Yet, it’s highly unlikely that either of those conventional pieces of equipment capture their own otherwise wasted heat and generate usable electricity with it. That’s exactly what the BioLite CampStove does. What’s more, this innovative little stove utilizes renewable biomass (i.e. kindling), rather than propane, to create real wood flames. This allows for greater portability, a more traditional and environmentally friendly heat-source, and a nearly unending spring of energy (depending on the amount of nearby biomass available). The BioLite CampStove Bundle includes a portable grill, kettle pot, a USB charging port, and a rechargeable flashlight.
Anker USB PowerPort Solar Charger – $49.99
This device is simple, sleek, and utilizes the age-old power source of the sun. It combines two collapsable solar panels, each about the size of a piece of printer paper (and nearly as thin). A third panel stores the dual USB charging ports and can also house your smaller electronic devices. In direct sunlight, the Anker PowerPort is efficient enough to provide two simultaneous and relatively rapid charges. You can leave the Anker PowerPort to bask in the sun at your campsite, or attach it to the back of your backpack while you hike. With it’s highly portable foldable design, this solar charger is the perfect replacement for clunky, inefficient batteries.
CamelBak All Clear Bottle – $99.00
The CamelBak All Clear Bottle is a plastic water canteen with a rechargeable UV light integration. A proper amount of UV light can kill nearly all forms of bacteria, viruses, and cysts that propagate within water sources. This particular bottle has a UV light that rests on the bottom side of the lid. Consequently, all you need to do is press a button and shake for about 60 seconds. After a single minute, you’ll have purified, drinkable water. The CamelBak All Clear Bottle includes a USB charger and a second, non-UV bottle lid to use after the purification process. It’s important to note, however, that UV light cannot kill some harmful cysts, like those that cause giardia.
Braven BRV-1 Bluetooth Speaker – $59.99
Many lovers of the outdoors carelessly exclude a proper, rugged speaker from their usual camping gear lists. This unfortunate case of neglect often leads to the use of poor quality smartphone speakers or even poorer quality would-be musicians providing your campsite soundscape. Therefore, a reliable and sturdy bluetooth speaker should always be on your checklist. The Braven BRV-1 is a relatively inexpensive, and highly durable portable speaker and charging station. It has a shockproof, waterproof exterior and a 12-hour battery life. While its fidelity takes a slight backseat to its outdoor toughness, the BRV-1 still offers a surprisingly powerful and rich sound.
SnowLizard Xtreme iPhone Case – $149.99
The SnowLizard Xtreme is perfect for the wilderness explorers that want to stay connected no matter what terrain they’re braving. Sure, it is a little pricier than most cases. Yet, feeling unfettered assurance of your iPhone’s safety is probably worth the extra dough. This case can absorb the shock from nearly 7 foot drops, is completely waterproof up to 2 meters, and has an internal solar-powered battery (along with mini solar panels) that can provide an extra 7% charger per hour for your phone. You can charge the extra battery using standard electrical outlets, and continue to recharge it with the convenient solar panels located on the back of the case. The only downside: SnowLizard doesn’t make a version for Android phones.
GeChic Portable Monitor – $199.00
Finally, we have the GeChic portable monitor for those inclined to get some media streaming in during their time in the wild. There’s no shame in wanting to watch a movie or TV show during the off-hours while camping. While most traditionalists would scoff at the thought of creating more screen-time opportunities, many of us feel more than ok about introducing a screen into our camping gear list. And the GeChic portable monitor is the perfect screen for the job. It measures 15.6 inches wide by 1.3 cm thick, and includes a very necessary HDMI-input and built-in speakers. We recommend pairing it with a Google Chromecast for the ultimate outdoor streaming experience.
younity Media Server App – $2.99/month, $30/year, or $75 for Lifetime
Even the most tech-savvy individuals often forget about apps when gathering their camping gear. Apps are certainly not the first thing that comes to mind when planning a outdoor excursion. Although, the younity app definitely deserves an inclusion on your high-tech equipment list. As a media server app, younity is the perfect partner to your GeChick monitor, Braven speaker, and of course, your SnowLizard iPhone case. It provides complete access to stream, download, and share all of the files stored on your home computer while you’re off exploring the world. With younity, you have an unobstructed ability to listen to your favorite playlists, watch your beloved movies, and even browse your collections of cherished photos or important documents. As long as the files are stored on your computer, you’ll be able to access and enjoy them from anywhere, using any device, with the help of younity.
Here’s how it works:
younity is a media server app. It works by scanning your computer hard drive(s) and delivering your files to your mobile devices and other computers. It acts as your own personal cloud and a private network between all of your devices and the files stored within them. The younity app will automatically organize your files by content type (i.e. Videos, Music, Photos, Documents), making it incredibly easy for you to seamlessly access, stream, and enjoy any of your files at any time.
younity is the perfect companion for the tech-savvy camper. You can keep your phone or tablet completely free from storage capacity issues, while maintaining constant access to all of your digital things. Sure, having access to your files while surviving in the great outdoors probably won’t save your life. Although, that kind of unlimited access is bound to improve the quality of your campsite living. If you’re truly an innovative-explorer with no qualms about bringing the best tech into the wild, then younity should be at the top of your gear list.
Click here to learn more about younity.
Check out our comparison of the best portable bluetooth speakers.