When you are obsessed with the mountains as I am, it can be difficult to remember that not everyone else is. This gets particularly tricky during gift giving time.
For instance, did you know there are activities other than hiking and climbing that your friends and loved ones are interested in? I did some research and found the REI, Eastern Mountain Sports, Hudson Trail Outfitters, Erehwon and other outdoor supply companies are prepared for this revelation by providing equipment for kayaking, cycling and even car camping. Who knew?
What we have to do to show that we care through our gift giving is to think of how all those products in the outfitter can benefit the receiver in his or her non-outdoors lifestyle. (Keep in mind that this is not the appropriate time to hold a grudge because they refuse to go on another “death march” – their words, certainly not mine – with you.) For instance take the backpacker’s cook set. The pots are collapsible or at least they fit neatly together – suitable for your friend that lives in a tiny apartment.
When you show up at the Christmas party or on Christmas Eve, you can also be sure to have the perfect gifts for everyone. Remember that lady-friend that insisted Teva’s were “unsightly tire rubber” – again, their words? Well, now they can be fashionable when they come to camp with you in the new super-impractical high-heeled version of the useful sandals.
Lastly, we should also think about the holidays as a door way to enriching everyone’s year with our love for the mountains. Most outfitters provide regular classes and even outings to regional trails and peaks. Go ahead and sign everyone up! Be sure not to overlook the cycling and the kayaking activities, because there is more than hiking and mountaineering… apparently.
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