The long lingering summer is here and many kiwis are making the most of the great outdoors. But what is a camping holiday without a backpack full of gadgets?
At least – that’s the question I ask myself as a fully paid up member of the Gadget fraternity.
Here are my hottest tips for tools and toys to get you through the rest of the camping season.
1. Leatherman Tread Wearable Multitool
Gadget Guy Rating: 4 out of 5.
Leatherman is renowned for producing multi-tools that are favoured by explorers, adventurers and rugged outdoors types. The Tread, however, $349, occupies a niche somewhere between wearable fashion and great outdoors functionality. Designed to be worn on the wrist the Tread cleverly holds 29 real-life tools, including a cutting hook, bottle opener, carbide glass breaker and a range of hex drives and screwdrivers on 10 customisable stainless steel links. In short, it’s a tool box on your wrist.
You can imagine outdoorsy types wearing this chunky stainless steel bracelet – though my wife did describe it as a Man Bangle – or a Mangle!
2. Torpedo7 Jetboil Flash Javakit
Gadget Guy Rating: 4 out of 5
Kiwis love camping, but leaving the city behind doesn’t mean going without life’s little luxuries. The Jetboil Flash Java Kit, $229.99, can brew two perfect cups of coffee in just over two minutes. When the water reaches boiling point, a colour-change heat indicator window activates, turning the outside of the vessel orange. The coffee press attachment stows inside the Jetboil cup when done so it won’t take up any extra space in your pack.
Each Pack Contains:
- 1.0 Liter FluxRing cooking cup with insulating cozy, featuring Flash colour
- Adjustable stainless steel burner
- Push-button igniter
- Colour-change heat indicator
- Drink-through lid with pour spout & strainer
- Bottom cover doubles as a measuring cup and bowl
- Able to store a 100g Jetpower fuel can
- Fuel Canister Stabilizer included
- Jetboil Coffee Press
- Coffee sample pack
3. DexShell waterproof socks
Gadget Guy Rating: 5 out of 5
Since the distributor, Tightlines, introduced these socks to NZ a year or so ago, they’ve been an instant hit – with hunters, fishermen, kayakers, boaties, trampers and anyone else who normally gets their feet wet on a regular basis.
Many people (including my son) have had fun testing their socks in their bath! The idea that you no longer have to put up with wet feet seems attractive to everyone.
The patented Porelle membrane that blocks water molecules getting through also wicks sweat away, leaving your feet dry and comfortable at all times. The Trekking Sock is a mid- calf, mid weight merino wool sock.
It is specially developed for tramping in arduous, wet environments. DexShell’s 100% Waterproof socks have a unique 3 ply construction to give you the ultimate in comfort and warmth.
4. Torpedo 7 Goal Zero Switch 8 Solar Recharging Kit
Gadget Guy Rating: 4 out of 5
In 2016 you would have to consider a solar charger to be an essential summer gadget for anyone who takes their electronics off the beaten track. This range a really high quality and are much better than the novelty gift-type chargers I have tested in the past.
Equipped with the Switch 8 recharger and the Nomad 3.5 Solar Panel, you’ll stay powered up wherever you go. From wall, car, or sun, charge your phone, boost an iPad, and switch on lots of handy accessories without a cord.
Recharge by: USB, Solar Panel
Power Output: USB
Ideal for: Phone, MP3
Kit Includes: Switch 8 & Nomad 3.5
Weight: 11.2 oz
The Goal Zero Switch 8 can be charged by connecting a compatible solar panel but it can also be charged by being plugged into a USB power source. It then takes the same amount of time to charge your device from a Goal Zero power pack as it does from the wall.
All prices correct at time of publication. Products subject to availability.