BuzzFeed’s list of 30 Insanely Useful Camping Products You’ll Wish You Knew About Sooner is an awesome assortment of good, bad and ugly outdoor equipment that you either need or need to avoid.
Water Filter. The MSR Miniworks water filter is fantastic. I’ve used it on numerous trips and it works great. Be aware that in the winter the ceramic will freeze and you won’t get any flow.
Inflatable Solar Lantern. My daughter got us a bunch of these blow-up solar lights. They are fun, lightweight and festive. Easy to pack but they do pop, so be careful.
Stormproof Matches. Seems like the only time I need to make a fire or light a stove is when it’s cold, drizzly, windy and my fingers barely work. Stormproof matches are like tiny highway flares that burn for a while even when the wind is blowing hard.
Electronic Pest Repeller. Uh, yeah. And you also have a million dollars waiting for you in a Nigerian bank.
Poler Napsack. These things get great reviews. And yet… Maybe bring an emergency blanket just in case (mylar emergency blankets really work in a pinch.)
EVA Poncho. They just look stupid.
Seriously though, most of the things on BuzzFeed’s list are worth a look, like the JetBoil backpacking stove – I wouldn’t get one ($$$) but they work as advertised and I’m always a little jealous of the folks that have these and are enjoying their hot freeze-dried Teriyaki chicken twenty minutes before I am.