posted 2020 Nov by


Authored by Amara DePaul
December 1, 2020

In true 2020 fashion, scheduled trips have turned into ad hoc trips and co-founder, Amara Risa, has done A LOT of car camping and backpacking this year. Last year, we shared with our community a list of our favorite products. Surprise surprise (or maybe not a surprise), this year’s holiday gift guide got a little bit longer and Amara even includes items we fell back in love.

Before we get started, we want to note that Live Alive Adventures is not receiving any incentives from the companies listed below. We simply love their items and use them for many adventures. However, if you work for one of these companies… we are open to sponsorships and partnerships :) 

POLER Napsack  ($130)
A wearable sleeping sack, what's not to love about this? We have used this sitting around campfires, late night star photography and even early morning Canoeing. We love these more than we are willing  to admit.

AeroPress Coffee Maker ($29.95)
Durable, lightweight, compact, and makes BOMB coffee. We are self proclaimed coffee snobs and proud of it. Just because  you are car camping doesn't mean you have to drink nasty coffee.

Stasher Bags (Starting at $7.99)
We attempt to be better humans in all ways. One way we try to be better is by creating less waste - especially when car camping and backpacking.These Stasher bags are non-toxic and extremely durable. We know it's impossible to be perfect 100% of the time, but those little moments add up. The earth thanks you.

Annual National Parks Pass ($80)

America: Land of the free, home of the brave, and also filled with some of the most beautiful national parks. America the Beautiful: The National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands pass series is your ticket to visit more than 2,000 federal recreation sites around the US. From personal use, our pass paid for itself in the first week of a 6-week road trip. Give the gift of exploring some of America’s most beautiful destinations.

Eno Hammock (Starting at $49.95)
Eno hammocks come with us on EVERY road trip. They pack down super small and are easy to put up. If you are up for it you can even sleep in it! Eno has some great bug net and rain covers for those overnight hammock adventures.

Jackery Portable Charging Station (Starting at $139.99)

With 2020 bringing a whole new level of ‘work from wherever’ experiences, car camp life has never been easier. As entrepreneurs, my husband and I are used to working from anywhere, as long as we can use our laptop. With cafes and other businesses operating with limited indoor functions, finding a public plug on the road has been quite challenging. Fortunately, the Jackery was a LIFESAVER. With this portable charging station, we were able to plug in everything: computers, cameras, coffee bean grinders, air mattress pumps, and more. Even with multiple items plugged in at once, it remained at 90 percent charge for a while. For the Jackery 500, and with heavy use, we recharged it every 7-10 days. If you are looking to go completely off the grid, Jackery also has solar chargers.

Matador pocket blanket ($29.99)
The Matador Pocket Blanket is a dry, clean place to sit – anywhere, anytime. Ours was given to us by a friend and we have passed on the love by purchasing it for other friends! This pocket-sized blanket is ideal for hiking, parks, beaches, festivals, and events. Weighing just 3.8 oz., it’s water repellent, puncture resistant, and includes attached ground stakes for windy conditions.

Matador Freefly 16 Packable Backpack ($54.99)
We love Matador products so much we had to add another. A great backpack to keep in your car or your larger backpack for those fast day hikes you want to go light and don't need anything heavy duty.  "The Freefly16 is ultralight, weatherproof,  and packs down to fit in your palm. Equipped with sealed seams, sealing zippers, and adjustable mono-mesh shoulder straps to distribute weight, this backpack was engineered for lightweight travel and ease of use." Trust us, add this to your list.

ORORO Classic Heated vest ($169.99)
As someone who will find a reason to use car seat heaters in the summer this vest was made just for me. Well not really, it was made for everyone who enjoys feeling warm and fuzzy. It feels like being wrapped up in a heated blanket.  Just look at the stats below. 
  • 4 carbon fiber heating elements generate heat across your core body areas
  • Adjust 3 heat settings (high, medium, low) with just a simple press of a button
  • Up to 10 working hours
  • Heats in seconds with 7.4V UL/CE-certified battery
  • Keeps your hands warm with our dual pocket heating zones

MSR Reactor Stove Systems (starting at $219.95)
If you have ever been backpacking and tried to use a backpacking stove you've probably experienced ageing 3 years waiting for water to boil. This is NOT that stove. The MSR reactor stove is our go to backpacking stove no matter what the weather. It's durable (we had ours for 7 years of very heavy use before we had to replace), fast (boils .5L water in 1.5 minutes), fuel efficient, and compact.  Your caffeine and hanger needs will thank you and save those around you.

Platy Preserve Wine holder ($7.46)
Just because you like to backpack doesn't mean you have to give up your wine. Given to me by my husband about 8 years ago we still take it with us on every  overnight backpacking trip. It fits an entire bottle of wine and folds up to .8 oz when finished. This way you don't have to bring a heavy glass bottle (we have seen people do this on the trail) AND you don't have to sacrifice the flavor of your wine. Win Win for wine lovers.

GARMIN Fenix 6 Pro Solar  ($849.99)
If you don't just use a watch just to tell time, this is it. The GARMIN Fenix 6 pro solar does it all. It even charges itself in the sun. They are extremely durable and have everything to GPS maps when you are hiking, weather,  surf ready features, golf maps, and advanced sleep monitoring. If we tried to list everything it could do it would be a 7 page essay. We’ll leave that to the universities. 

Slowtide Changing Poncho ( $69.95)

Many of us have experienced this: You are at the beach and need to change. You hide under a blanket or in your car, there is a lot of wiggling, some questionable faces (especially if you are trying to get or out of a wetsuit), and ultimately you feel like a failed Houdini.  

Slowtide’s Changing Poncho provides personal space for you to change anywhere and without having the police called on you for indecent exposure.


Revel Gear Camping Lights ($24.99)
Just because you are camping doesn't mean you can't create an amazing ambiance. Revel Gear Camping Lights doesn't just make it look pretty (which we aren't above) it also adds enough light so you don't need a headlamp!

M Powered Luci Inflatable Solar light ($24.95)
Such a great addition to any backpacker, car camper, van lifer, or just any person who is spending time outdoors after dark! These are super lightweight, solar powered, and collapsable.  

CotoPaxi Fuego Hooded Down Jacket ($250)
Available for both Men and Women, we love this retro looking puffy jacket.  It has a hood, is water resistant, and lightweight. And let's be honest, it looks super cute and has a llama in its logo. 

Awesome Maps ($59.99)
We LOVE maps. All kinds of maps. Considering we want to visit every corner of the world that should not be surprising. Awesome Maps has all kids of maps from surf maps, bucket list maps, paragliding maps, the list goes on. 

Now, if you'll excuse us, we have some gear to buy.