Our Favorite Fall Camping Essentials

With these gear picks, you'll stay warm, cozy and connected both inside and outside your tent.

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September 08, 2021

Fall is undeniably the best season of the year. Between the slight chill in the air to the seasonal produce (apples! squash! Brussels sprouts!) to the holiday celebrations, it doesn't get much better than the cool-weather months following September.

With the extra-hot summers we’ve had across the country, the changing leaves and cool breezes are a welcome sign that fall is on its way. From leaf-peeping trips to late-season camping, get ready for fall outdoor adventures with these 12 essential items.


Fall nights are chilly. Stay cozy, off the cold ground and away from animals with Smittybilt's rooftop tent, which attaches to your car's roof racks and can be set up in minutes. The tent comes with a cushy mattress, and there's enough space to store the ladder plus all your bedding, PJs and a few other accessories while the tent is closed.

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Whether you're a hammock camper or a sunrise hammock lover, it's hard to beat ENO's two-person hammock. It's lightweight, durable and its Atlas Strap System (sold separately) is a cinch to set up. Plus, it comes in a bunch of fun colors.

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Coleman's self-inflating sleeping pad is about as easy as it gets: A free-flow valve automatically inflates the camping pad when opened so there's no need to travel with an air pump. Plus, it includes a pillow to keep your head elevated for a more restful sleep.

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Keep your sleeping bag clean and cozy for sleeping, and instead wrap yourself in Rumpl's water-resistant down blanket while you're hanging out under the stars. This thing sheds water and dirt and stays soft and cozy no matter what you throw its way. On warmer nights, Rumpl can also replace your sleeping bag for a much homier sleep experience.

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This speaker may look small, but it packs a considerable punch. And it's waterproof (and dustproof!), so you don't have to rush out into the rain to pack it up if you forget it outside. A carabiner is integrated into the speaker itself for extra protection so you can take your Clip 4 anywhere; just clip it on a belt, backpack strap or buckle. Plus, it recharges with a USB cable, so you can juice it up with any portable battery pack.

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Light up your camp with a strand or two of Revel Gear's Trail Hound lights. These 30-foot fairy lights pack down smaller (and lighter) than a deck of playing cards, and they're bright enough to eliminate the need for a headlamp. Dimmer switches allow you to conserve power, set the mood or make lights flash for an outdoor party.

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If you're running a lot of electronics, you're going to need a beefy charger. And not only does Goal Zero's Yeti series charge USB-powered devices for days, but it also has two AC adapters for laptops and small appliances. If you're hitting the road for a week or more, you might also want the Boulder 50 Solar Panel, which will ensure you never lose power.

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$79.99 (Pack of 2)

As welcome as the lack of cell service usually is when you're going off-grid, it can be a pain when you're meeting up with a group of friends. Avoid that problem altogether by making sure everyone in your caravan has a walkie-talkie tuned to the same channel. Midland's X-Talker Two-Way Radios have a range of up to 38 miles, perfect for keeping everyone in the loop.

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Going camping without a pocketknife (and some duct tape) is asking for something to break. If ever there was a do-it-all pocketknife, Leatherman's Signal might be it. You'll find all your standard blades here as well as a firestarter, safety whistle, hammer and bottle opener.

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Leave your wine glasses at home. Instead, grab a set of YETI's insulated wine tumblers, which are puncture and rust-resistant and will keep your wine at just the right temperature. It comes with YETI's MagSlider Lid — a smooth-sliding lid that adds an additional barrier of protection to keep your wine contained.

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From $21.99 (Pack of 10)

Forget instant. Warm up in the morning with a real cup of coffee. Kuju Coffee is a gamechanger for anyone who needs a jolt of caffeine in the morning. Unlike the instant stuff, this is the real deal, just in a portable package. Rip off the top of the filter pack, secure the arms to the sides of your mug and pour over hot water for an almost-instant, but much better, cup o' Joe. And know that you're doing good when you buy it, too: Kuju sources most of its coffee from a farm that employs former sex-trafficking victims.

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Glerups' wool and felt slippers are a must-have for chilly days and cold nights. While you might think felt shoes would cause you to overheat, these regulate your temperature so you never get sweaty. And the natural rubber soles offer much better traction and weather protection than your average slipper, so they're suited for both all-day wear and wandering around the campsite. Looking for something a bit different? Plus, find more of our favorite wool slippers.

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More Camping Must-Haves

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