Ah, summer. There’s just something about the summer.
It’s the time when possibilities seem endless and memories of summers past drive us to destinations as far as another part of the world, or as close as our backyard to try and create new ones. Summer, in a word, means adventure.
Like any adventure, you’ll need to make sure you have the right tools to not only get the most out of it, but in some cases, survive it. So while items like a cooler and a good e-book might be known necessities, here are some gadgets you might not think of that can help make this summer adventure an instant classic memory.
Turtle Shell Speaker
One of the most exciting gadgets of the summer, the Turtle Shell from Outdoor Tech might just be the most versatile and complete outdoor speaker available.
Sure, it’s wireless with perfect sound quality, exceptional range (30 feet), battery life (9 hours) and speakerphone capability, but you’ve probably come to expect that in portable speakers. The Turtle Shell is unique, though, in just how good it sounds, and how durable it is, as it can’t be stopped by dirt, rain or shock damage. When you factor in such features as the ability to attach it to a bike, and some undeniably good looks, this is the only outdoor speaker you need.
There’s a variety of gadgets built for camping that are, in one way another, designed to bring you the comforts of home wherever you go. That’s great, of course, but in some way you still want to be able to enjoy the outdoors without feeling like you’ve brought the entire modern world with you.
The BioLite provides a compromise in that department, as it’s an electric campfire that runs off twigs like a usual campfire, but provides a more powerful and sustained flame than you can get out of the old fashioned method. Even better, it takes the energy from that same flame and can convert it to an electrical output through its available USB port should you need it.
Of course, if a better campfire isn’t appealing enough, you can always add the available grill top add-on for a complete outdoor cooking tool.
Odds are that wherever you venture this summer, whether it’s your backyard or some distant mountaintop, you’ll be taking at least one mobile device with you. You’ll need a case, then, that will keep up wherever you go, meaning you’ll want a Lifeproof.
Generally acknowledged as one of the best of its kind, Lifeproof builds cases that not only promise to resist water, dirt, snow and shock, but actually do so without sacrificing the style of your device. Models are currently available for recent gen iDevices and the Galaxy SIII, so if you have a compatible device and plan to venture anywhere this summer, trust it with no other case.
Price: Varies Depending on Model (Ranging from $69.99 to $129.99)
GoPro Hero 3 Camera
We all have good reason to be grateful for our phone cameras, as they have afforded us the ability to capture the moment wherever we are in a quality of photo better than should be expected from such a versatile device. Despite all their benefits, though, for the adventurous types of the world, phone cameras can in no way keep up.
That is exactly what the GoPro was invented, and why it’s trusted by adventurers the world over. A mountable camera that thrives in any element you can survive without losing any of its professional style quality, consider the GoPro to be an extra pair of HD eyes that capture, or with the better models, record, everything. While there may be more budget friendly options for your standard summer outings, settle for nothing less if you’ve got epic plans for your vacation and need a suitable camera that’ll allow you to own the experience forever.
Price: Varies Depending on Model (Ranging from $199.99 to $399.99)
Sony Walkman Underwater Headphones
Perhaps the best thing about the summer is that it means you’re finally able to go back in the water again (presence of giant sharks non-withstanding), which also means you’ll be able to take advantage of any available pools for swimming laps or just having fun.
If you are, then be sure to invest in a pair of Sony’s waterproof Walkman headphones, one of the most creative waterproof headphones available. That’s because they’re not only functional in up to 6 feet of fresh water, but aren’t even dependent on a device to work with, as the wireless headphones store up to 4 GB of songs internally, meaning they’re all you need to take with you to enjoy a little music with your swim.
RC Battle Copters
While the idea of going to a park, or your own backyard, and bringing a toy that takes flight is still appealing, in this modern age, it’s clear that kites and standard RC planes just don’t cut it anymore when looking for excitement.
These copters from Sharper Image bring back that thrill of flight by giving you two copters that shoot infared lasers capable of battling each other midair. Score three hits and your opponent’s copter is forced to land for a short period of time, giving you control of the sky.
Sure, they’re ideal for kids, but no one’s going to blame you for taking to the backyard for an afternoon of beer and dogfights.
The Tjiller may be a drink holder that keeps your favorite beverage (technically, I acknowledge it may not be a beer) cool, but don’t call it a coozie.
That’s because while a coozie is a cheap looking foam cover that rarely does the job, the Tjiller actively reduces the temperature of your drink for five hours with only a short stay in the freezer, and without a drop of condensation to show for the effort. While it’s perfect for a day of fishing, even a day around the home will never have to be spent without a cold drink nearby again.
Everybody loves a good cookout, but if you’re the one manning the grill, there’s always an element of pressure to deliver. While the proper knowledge and quality food can often be the biggest aides, the right set of tools can make a difference.
While slightly unconventional, the Grill Wrangler should really be your go-to grill tool. It’s a three-in-one device that provides easy access to a pair of tongs, a spatula and a fork so you can work every piece of food on the fire according to need with without having to switch between the separate individual pieces. It might look a little strange, but good ideas come in many forms.
The Cave Tent
The traditional way of camping is, of course, to rough it as much as possible. One of the biggest hurdles to doing so, though, is the set up of a basic tent, which for most requires patience that equals that of assembling a room of IKEA furniture.
The tents from Heimplanet removes all of that burden by requiring nothing more than a full inflation to be up and running, with no stakes, bars or confusing instructions required. Unlike other inflatable tents of its kind, this one can withstand gale force winds without much more than a budge to show and is virtually indestructible by the elements alone.
This is a tent for serious campers only, but it may be the best of its kind.
Perhaps the strangest of all the gadgets on this list, the Bug-A-Salt offers an alternative to the fly swatter that is much more direct and practical than spray, or the ineffective ultrasonic repellent options out there.
Instead, the Bug-A-Salt allows you to kill flies, mosquitos, spiders and other pests by shooting a pinch of table salt at them. This eliminates the need of having to sneak up on flies, and also saves you from clean up, as it kills the insects without mess or fuss. This is simply point-and-click technology at its best.
Annoying insects have forever been the unfortunate catch to even the best summer activities, but the Bug-A-Salt is a surprisingly effective, and admittedly fun, solution.
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