Outdoorsmen (and women) looking to drop their backpacks have a number of new alternatives for hauling gear into the wild. New personal trailers and roller bags, like the Armadillo and Trailpod, have been popping up in recent years, pulling gear weight off the back and putting it in tow. Zuca adds the new All Terrain, a burly, aluminum-framed roller with large, knobby tires and a hunger for rough, open spaces.
Plenty of Bluetooth speakers can get outside and play music at the beach, campground or poolside. Not as many are purpose-built for paddling into the waves and catching the big one, though. Designed to stand up against rolling saltwater, shock and other hazards of the great outdoors, the Hercules WAE Outdoor Rush speaker can mount to your surfboard or snowboard and bring the tunes along for the ride.
A few weeks too late to be considered for our 2015 best caravans or water toys lists but an early candidate for next year, the Transformis Inspire is an interesting twist on the trailerable houseboat. It borrows from several other innovative products, including expandable boats and slide-out camper modules, to provide a comfortable land/water living space for touring the world by highway and waterway.
Back in 2013, we wrote about Norwegian company Fimbulvetr and its ideas for what a snowshoe should look like. Its unique honeycomb-style thermoplastic elastomer shoe was designed to glide through deep snow. This winter, it's launched a new model called the Hikr. The short snowshoe comes with promises of Lamborghini-inspired design and quick ascents up steep, snowy mountains.
Running and cycling gear either tends to sacrifice breathability in favor of keeping the rain out, or vice versa. The new One Gore-Tex Active Bike and One Gore-Tex Active Run jackets provide the best of both worlds by using a new material called Gore-Tex Active that provides a permanent beading surface that actually sheds water and provides greater breathability.
Camping provides a wonderful way of escaping everyday life and its ringing, buzzing and blinking gadgets. That doesn't mean campers need to go completely old school, though. Much of the camping gear and gadgetry we saw throughout 2015 uses smart design and tech for the betterment of campers everywhere. We've already looked at the big stuff – motorhomes and caravans – so here it's all about smaller, simpler car camping gear.
While many people prefer to ride in a motorized cart when they're golfing, not all golf courses have such vehicles … and bringing one's own full-size cart isn't really an option. Well, that's where the GoCaddy comes in. Billed as "the world's lightest and most versatile personal golf cart," it incorporates an existing GoPed folding electric scooter.
Sure, you can still enjoy the great outdoors with the tried-and-true gear you've been using since the 70s, but there's some pretty cool high-tech gadgetry being designed for the likes of trekkers, skiers, surfers and trail runners these days, and there's nothing shameful about updating your gear list with a touch of cutting-edge tech and design. Whether you're looking for helpful tools to jumpstart a New Year's resolution of getting outside more or shopping for the outdoor junkie in your life, these gadgets are sure to result in fresh air and big fun.
We didn't see a camper quite as wild in 2015 as the seaplane camper we saw in 2014, but we have seen many a cool mobile living solution since we last compiled a list of our favorite RVs. New camper vans followed big events in the van market, including the launch of the Volkswagen T6 Transporter, US launch of the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 4x4, and discontinuation of full Ford E-Series vans. Beyond the Type Bs, there were also versatile expandable trailers and efficiently packaged roof- and chassis-top designs. Here are the coolest, most interesting motorhomes and camping trailers of 2015.
Long before it was popularized by fashion-conscious shoppers and flamboyant hip-hoppers, the word swag simply described a no-frills portable sleeping kit used by happy campers across Australia and New Zealand. The Rescue Swag doesn't depict a stylish liberation mission or a place to rest your head, but it does transform this mainstay of outdoor adventure into a handy first aid kit that can also be used as a sling or splint.