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The right gear makes all the difference for the civilized outdoorsman.

Most of us, if we’re honest, will admit that the outdoors hold a special kind of intrigue. For one, it’s beautiful. For another, it presents a stark and welcome contrast to the rigors of everyday urban life. But more than that, it serves as a unique reminder of our past.

Once, these woods/mountains/deserts (as you like) were home. Paying the occasional visit gives us context and reminds us that life is bigger than our spreadsheets after all. It also, curiously, gives us space to think all these deep thoughts and then wonder why we’re a species that has to arrive at a theory for every single thing we do.

Unless you come unprepared or peg your tent over a colony of fire ants, it’s a rarity to ever regret a camping trip. But how best to enjoy it? You already know you need a sleeping bag at the very least, and maybe a tent. But it’s the little things that make the trip special.

We went to the famous Painted Hills in Eastern Oregon and packed along a few gems with us to ensure we maximized our time with mother nature. Here’s what we brought.

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Medium Dry Duffle, by Filson
There’s a certain confidence that comes with a bomb-proof dry bag. The modest investment is well worth ensuring you don’t get stuck wearing soaked clothes all weekend.

Take Bamboo Chair, by Snow Peak
Let’s be real. You’ll spend a hefty amount of time around the fire, ideally with a stiff drink at your side. This classy and comfortable folding chair is the perfect place to imbibe.

Expedition Hatchet, by Wetterlings
Speaking of the campfire, it’s time to upgrade from that dull $15 plastic-handled hatchet collecting dust in your garage. This example from Wetterlings represents 135 years of expertise.

PocketRocket Backpacking Stove, by MSR
Weighing just over 3 oz., the PocketRocket Backpacking Stove features a fully-adjustable flame, meaning it’s ready to cook gourmet meals and boil a liter of water in less than 4 minutes.

Snow Peak Titanium French Press and Double-Wall Mug
Drink your cowboy coffee if you must, just remember that we live in a golden age of coffee tools and techniques. Invest in this kit for a sublime daily kickoff.

8oz Classic Flask from Stanley
Hopefully you don’t need us to tell you how essential this is, but we particularly like the old-school simplicity of this time-tested example from Stanley.

Large Cutting Board Set from Snow Peak
This is the item that always should have existed and somehow didn’t until recently. The high-quality, just-large-enough kitchen knife tucks neatly away in the folding wood board.