For those of you who have spent time in Sunset Country, you're well aware of our variety in all things outdoors. We have terrain that can be hiked, boated, skied, paddled, snowshoed, climbed, snowmobiled, and casted—so the need for outdoor supplies is always abundant.
Whether you're planning a trip here in 2018, know someone who is, or are sending a loved one to explore, you can rest easy knowing we have you covered in the outdoor activity department. Here are some of our top suggestions of gifts for the outdoor enthusiast in your life.
A Good Thermos
Ahh, Coffee. Enough said.
A Fishing Vacation in 2019
You could easily spend too much money on random things you aren't sure they'd like, or you could send the angling nut in your life on the trip of a lifetime. Northwestern Ontario boasts everything from cozy comfort to luxurious getaways.
Do they like ice fishing? Send them out to one of Sunset Country's many year round lodges for an experience they won't soon forget. Can they wait until summer? Book a week fishing in Canada's Fishing Capital, where they boast 19 game fish species and over 70,000 lakes so there's never a crowd, unless you want to bring the whole family!
The staple to any outdoor activity is protection from harm. Why not give the same luxury to your own mug this year? If you do any extended activities outside in the sun or in cold temperatures, you may want to consider buying one for yourself!
AN Outdoors Notebook
From bird watchers to nature writers, folks in the outdoors are creative, and with that creativity comes the need for an outlet. A notebook built for the outdoors is a great gift for those who aren't afraid of anything but fair weather.
For anyone spending time in Ontario's Sunset Country's vast landscape and backcountry, these aren't just cool gadgets, they are tools for survival. But, still cool.
Give your hiking, camping, backpacking, and travel fiend the gift of emergency water this holiday season. LifeStraw is a portable water filter system not much larger than a pen. With a filter that has up 1,000 litres of usage, it'll help them in any bind, even as simple as needing to rehydrate after shore lunch.
Or, go for a multi-tool. They'll help your pals open packages, prep meals, get splinters out of undesirable locations, open wine bottles, and—of course—supply handy pliers to get hooks out of fish.
Who wants socks in their stocking? Outdoor enthusiasts, that's who! Warm wool socks, are an outdoorsman/woman's best friend. Socks aren't cheap, especially the ones your toes will thank you for. So don't worry, you aren't cheaping out! Because of their price, they are often an overlooked piece of the outdoor enthusiast's wardrobe and are always a worthwhile purchase.
Does your friend or loved one carry valuable gear into the backcountry or just in the boat with them? Waterproof bags are the way to go. More and more companies are creating all of their bags to be waterproof because, let's face it, what good is a normal bag in the outdoors when a few rain clouds roll in?
There are an incredible number of artists in Ontario's Sunset Country that have been inspired by Northwestern Ontario. Do you know someone who loves this area? Help them capture it and bring it home in an original or commissioned piece of artwork, whether it be painting, photo print, or even sculpture. Need help connecting with one? Contact Lake of the Woods Museum for more information on Northwestern Ontario's most iconic artists.
Boring, right? Well, not exactly. Is there something your significant other or friend has been mentioning they want but maybe its just one of those things they have to pick out for themselves?
Let's use sunglasses as an example: What frames do they like? Do they need polarized? Are they going to need a certain tint for different types of water? How are you supposed to know all of this? You won't, and this is where I offer you the suggestion of giving gift cards. Stores throughout Ontario's Sunset Country will offer their own gift cards or store credits, so don't fear shopping locally this year or planning for your next visit!
If you can't decide on just one gift, or were hoping to put together an assortment, I'd suggest combining the face mask, an insulated thermos, and a multi-tool and "wrapping" it all up in a 25-30L waterproof bag.
If you do have to decide on one thing (as an angler I may be a tad bias...) I would suggest giving the gift of a fishing trip next season. It's quick and easy to call and book: then, just draw a fish on a handmade card with the lodge name below it and watch their face as you become the hero of the holidays.
I haven't planned this gift over and over again in my head hoping it would happen to me. Not at all.