2018 Holiday Gift Guide

Posted by: Shelby Cranshaw on Nov 27, 2018

Whether you're shopping for your favorite sustainability nerd or a backcountry fashionista, here are some gift ideas for anyone on your list.


Wilderness First Aid classPhoto by Luis Camargo.

Give the gift of preparedness with a Wilderness First Aid course. It’s never a bad idea to have a more wilderness medicine knowledge.

For the One Who's All About Maps

New NOLS Wilderness Navigation bookPhoto by Kirk Rasmussen

NOLS' newest book, Wilderness Navigation, is perfect for beginner to advanced adventurers. Start with the basics, like finding quality maps and charts, and move on to more advanced topics such as using compasses and GPS receivers.


Gourmet food while campingPhoto courtesy of Alex Chang - Cornell Leadership Expedition.

Write down your favorite backcountry recipe and gift it with the ingredients all ready to go! Or, go all in and gift them the latest edition of the NOLS Cookery

For the one in training

People training in a gymPhoto by Brad Christensen.

Do you know someone who can’t get outside as much as they’d like in the winter, but is trying to stay in shape for an upcoming trip?

Give the gift of fitness with a new class to try or a climbing gym membership.

For the backcountry fashionista

Person with beard wearing NOLS Wilderness Medicine hatPhoto by Kirk Rasmussen

A hat is in style every season. Gift a sun hat, trucker hat, or winter hat...you really can’t go wrong (and Paul Petzoldt would approve).

For the one with cold feet

Cozy socksPhoto by bark.

Happy feet make outdoor adventures all the more enjoyable. Gift a pair of wool socks, or down or synthetic booties for toasty feet.

For your favorite coffee lover

Hot coffeePhoto by Matthew Baugh.

Know someone who’s tired of cowboy coffee? Give them some high quality instant coffee. This stuff should pass any coffee snob’s test (brush up on your backcountry coffee-making skills).


SpicesPhoto from Pixabay.

Gift them new spices for a spice kit or a bottle of hot sauce. Try something different like curry, za’atar, ginger, or a masala blend. A perfect stocking stuffer!

For the sustainability nerd


Who says a repair can’t be stylish? Encourage friends or family to patch instead of purchase by gifting some funky repair patches

For the one who needs to get outside more

Two people skiing and pulling sleds on snow and smilingPhoto by Jared Steinman.

Plan a day trip. Take your loved ones hiking, kayaking, mountain biking, or any other outdoor activity that you love. Give the gift of fresh air and quality time in the outdoors. Who knows? It could be a gift that keeps on giving!

FOR the Book Lover

NOLS History Book a Worthy Expedition

Curl up and read about NOLS' history from 1965 to today.

Happy holidays from all of us at NOLS!

Find apparel, equipment, books, and more at the NOLS Store. 

[Editor's note: Blog post updated 12/17/2018]

Shelby is currently taking a gap year-and-a-half. After completing her Fall Semester in Patagonia, she caught the NOLS bug and became the 2016 Fall PR and Marketing intern at our world headquarters in Lander, Wyoming (she's a Wilderness First Aid grad, too!).