When it comes to camping and tailgating gear, one question reigns supreme: How much is enough? Some people are fine with a sleeping bag and a folding chair, while other people want shade for days and tents with multiple chambers, as well as a power source that can handle every piece of equipment from the big screen TV to the margarita machine.
Wherever you fall on that spectrum, you undoubtedly want quality. The last thing you want is to open a bag, unfold an awning or pop-up tent and discover a bunch of holes or broken parts. Fortunately, we have some favorite items that are doing wonders for our favorite spots, and hopefully they’ll become your favorites, too.
One problem we’ve long seen with ordinary tailgate tents is they somehow become harder and harder to erect as the years go by. Sometimes the top no longer fits or maybe pieces of the frame break—either way, it’s the worst when you realize this the hard way, as your friends struggle to assemble it in the hot sun.
The MoonShade Portable Vehicle Awning is especially convenient because half of the “frame” and support is your vehicle. Attach one side to your SUV or RV, and the rest is a breeze. And on days that the parking lot or campground are particularly hot and sunny, the new MoonWall accessory provides even more relief.
I knew I made the right decision in choosing the Coalatree Portable Double Hammock when I set it up in my backyard, turned my back for a few minutes, and returned to find my six-year-old son lounging in it with a new book. “Thanks for the hammock,” he told me, almost daring me to correct him that it was our new hammock.
But the aspect that makes this such a winner is the portability, as it folds into a built-in pocket, so it can be taken anywhere in the world, and hanging it is as simple as tying two square knots. And that’s also the key to stealing some hammock time back from your friends and family—only people who can tie the knots get first dibs.
We’ll never stop singing the praises of the Breeo Smokeless Fire Pit, as I have tried both the 24 and 19 options in the X series, and they just flat out deliver. For starters, they look great in the backyard, with or without the stone border (but I love the patina look above all else). However, the big draw is the accessories, as they these pits into an outdoor chef’s dream setup, and if that setup is in the wild or the big lot behind the stadium, the 19 is the better option because its smaller size makes it easier to carry.
Although a little birdie tells us a new version is soon going to be a favorite of campers everywhere.
Anker’s Nebula projectors have been huge winners for us in the past, but the Anker Nebula Cosmos Laser 4K Projector is the crown jewel of this collection. Not as compact and convenient as my beloved Capsule 2, this one still takes up very little trunk space, making it perfect for family getaways or playing other big games on a portable screen while you wait to make it into your big game.
Every backpack should have a portable charger in it, but when you’re bringing multiple backpacks, a bunch of devices—including an awesome projector—and probably some fans to keep everyone cool, you’re going to want a power station that has all the juice necessary for the trip.
The Anker 757 Portable Power Station boasts a 1229Wh LiFePO4 Battery and 1500W Solar Generator with 6 AC Outlets, so there’s hardly a phone, tablet, or laptop that will go uncharged, but what makes this one the right choice is the certainty and peace of mind.