Outdoor-loving people can be hard to buy gifts for. For one there are so many choices when it comes to different kinds of gear. On top of that, outdoor adventurers have the propensity to be “gearheads.” That is to say, they have some strong knowledge and opinions about specific pieces of gear, brands and what they want to unwrap this holiday season. If buying gifts for the gearheads in your life is stressing you out, you’ve come to the right place. Here’s a list of camping stocking stuffer ideas that any gearhead would love to receive this holiday season.

winter camping with dog at cabin in ponchos

Great Camping Stocking Stuffer Ideas


I had been backpacking for over a decade before I bothered to ditch my balled up puffy jacket and put a camping pillow in my sleep system. The difference it made in the quality of sleep I get in the backcountry is astounding. Don’t let the backpacker you love be like me.

Our pillows are compact, comfy and the perfect camping stocking stuffer idea for just about any camper. Everybody sleeps after all, right?

camping with pillows, bags, and pads

The Compressible Pillow Cinch

The Compressible Pillow Cinch is the only camp pillow in our line filled with foam. In fact, it is filled with upcycled excess open-cell foam plugs from our self-inflating sleeping pad lines. In addition, the polyester cover is made of 60% recycled fabric, making the Cinch one of our most sustainable products.

But we didn’t sacrifice comfort for sustainability, no way. The foam delivers all night support without “going flat” and the integrated cinch cord allows you to tighten and loosen the pillow to adjust its firmness. Feel like it’s losing it’s loft? Run it through the washer and dryer to clean it and fluff it! The Cinch’s sustainable materials and simple comfort make as sure-a-thing as it gets among camping stocking stuffer ideas.

inflating camp pillow

Air Head™ Pillow

The  Air Head Pillow’s inflatable, baffled core provides stability and is wrapped in a soft-to-the-touch, partially recycled, brushed polyester cover. For an extra measure of warmth and next-to-skin comfort, the top side of the cover is filled with the same synthetic eraLoft™ fill we use in our popular synthetic mummy bags. Plus, the cover is removable and machine washable, so you don’t end up packing last trip’s trail grime. It packs down super small into the included stuff sack. Definitely small enough to hide in a stocking.

Air Head™ Down Pillow

The Air Head Down Pillow is nearly identical to the Air Head Pillow except, you guessed it, its cover is filled with warm and fluffy 650-Fill Nikwax Hydrophobic Down™. This gives it the plush and fluffy next-to-skin feel that only down can provide. But don’t worry, like the original Air Head, the cover is partially recycled as well. Super compact, with outsized comfort, any gearhead would want to pull this out of their stocking.

Air Head™ Lite Pillow

The Air Head Lite Pillow might be the ultimate stocking stuffer of our pillows. This pillow is the same size as its Air Head companions but weighs a mere two ounces and rolls up small enough to travel around in your pocket. While it doesn’t feature the plush insulated covers of the others, the 30D stretch-knit fabric has a super-soft next-to-skin feel. Any gearhead in your life would geek out at the comfort-to-packed size ratio. And while I just made that ratio up, they will know exactly what I’m talking about once they blow a couple breaths into the Air Head Lite and sleep like a baby in the backcountry for the first time.

eating in tent with z seat

Camp Convenience Ideas

Camping is an art. An ever-evolving puzzle of figuring out how to exist and be comfortable outdoors. Giving a gift that adds convenience to camp is sure to be appreciated.

NeoAir® Micro Pump

It’s been over a decade since we released the first NeoAir sleeping pad. The air pad is now the backpacking sleeping pad standard. But history tells us that no technological innovation is without its consequences. It wasn’t long after backpackers had replaced their heavier self-inflating sleeping pads that they realized what they had given up.

Enter the NeoAir Micro Pump this tiny battery powered pump securely latches to the WingLock™ Valve standard on all Therm-a-Rest sleeping pads, allowing you to turn it on and busy yourself with other camp chores while it inflates your pad for you. It takes around 10 minutes. If you’re aiming to please your gearhead with raw backcountry convenience with your camping stocking stuffer ideas, look no further than the NeoAir Micro Pump.

Z Seat™

People love their Z Seats. I was once paddling in the Boundary Waters; it was my last day. We ran into a group at a portage that was on the way in, and I overheard a man lamenting the fact that he mistakenly left his Z Seat at one of the previous portages. He was facing a week of sitting on a canoe seat without his trusty cushion, and not excited about it. I had a Z Lite™ Sol I had cut in half and was using as a seat and gave that to him.

Super compact, ultralight, and super durable, the outdoor lover in your life is sure to get a lot of use out of the Z Seat™. Just like everybody sleeps, everybody sits. Why not give the gift of a camp seat? Simple with a high-use return—a gold camping stocking stuffer idea we think.


small pack down sleeping bag

Ideas For Those With Big Stockings

These ideas are small, yes, but maybe not as small as what we might traditionally think of as “stocking stuffers.” But if you were to gift one, it’s all but guaranteed you will be hugged and profusely thanked.

Ohm™ 32F/0C Sleeping Bag

While a sleeping bag wouldn’t typically be regarded as a stocking stuffer, the Ohm™ 32F/0C Sleeping Bag might actually fit into a stocking. Seriously, it packs down that small thanks to its rectangular shape, the premium materials and 900-Fill Nikwax Hydrophobic Down insulation.

A staff favorite here at HQ, the Ohm is super versatile. It has a spacious interior perfect for side sleepers despite its minimal weight and packed size. Unzipped all the way it lays out flat like a blanket or quilt if you want that extra ventilation in warmer weather. And, if you have a second one, you can stack them and zip them together for a two-person sleeping bag. Who said you can’t give yourself gifts?

standing in ponchos

Honcho Poncho™

We wrote a blog about why the Honcho Poncho is a super-versatile layer to have. That blog can double as an explanation why it makes a fantastic gift. If you don’t have the time to read it, here’s the super short version:

Wildly versatile, water resistant, warm, fun colors, doubles as a camp blanket and packs down small into its front pocket that is also a stuff sack. Essentially, when you whip this thing out at camp everybody gets a little jealous.

Something to Wear

Everybody sleeps. Everybody wears clothes. Well, I suppose I can’t unequivocally say “everybody” wears clothes, but I’m guessing the outdoor lover in your life does. Something to wear is always a foolproof gift.

wearing Therm-a-Rest 50th beanie


50th Anniversary Beanie

We don’t specialize in clothing, so no shame from us if you go somewhere else for a beanie. But we did turn 50 this year, and have a selection of apparel to celebrate, including this 50th Anniversary Beanie. Beanies are a staple in the winter, and any gearhead knows that Therm-a-Rest is an industry leading brand that changed the game when it invented the self-inflating sleeping pad. From a gear fascination perspective, that’s an interesting story to rep on your clothes. Plus, we didn’t make all that many of these, so they can get the measure of exclusive cool when they put it on.

Gifting is a beautiful tradition during the holiday season. It is a chance to show your loved ones that you care enough to spend a bit of money and put thought into a good gift for them. But it is not always easy. With any of these camping stocking stuffer ideas, your care and love for the gearhead in your life is sure to be communicated.

If none of these are quite doing the trick, check out the entire Gift Guide from our family of 5 brands. In there, you’re sure to find the perfect gear gift that shows you care. And while you’re at it, why not wrap your gifts sustainably? Happy gifting!

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