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The Best Road Trip Gear

Cool temps are coming, kids are back in school, and it’s time to hit the road—be it for those last perfect days  in the night country or to chill out in the desert. Here’s the gear to make the trip easier and more fun. 

1. Tune Outdoor

Tune M1

Weighing in at just 360 pounds, including a patented wing-wall design with flared sidewalls, this pop top gives it more cubic living space than any other lightweight truck camper on the market. It also comes with three aluminum or glass awning doors/windows for easy access, low-power interior halo lighting, and 440 feet of universal T-track on the interior, exterior, and roof for unlimited customization. Best yet, it assembles quickly and easily, translating to fast order-to-installation times and after-market service, while letting it integrate with nearly any pickup chassis—from Toyota Tacomas to Ford Lightnings. $10,999–$12,999:

2. Top Tree Herbs

Green Bali Kratom Tea

Need a little something to help you both relax and pep up, but want to avoid caffeine and alcohol? Say hello to kratom, an herb extracted from a Southeast Asian evergreen that can help you relax (though it has not been FDA tested and approved). Lab-tested and mixed with green tea here, it makes for the perfect beverage when you pull into camp after a long day behind the wheel. $19;

3. Snow Peak

Entry Pack TT

Light and airy, this car camping tent includes a sprawling vestibule tarp that makes it easy to chill in camp during times of rainfall or bright sun. The four-person tent is a snap to set up thanks to a color-coded system. Plus, the tent and tarp can be used separately depending on your needs. $600;

4. BioLite

Solar Generator
1500 Kit

If you plan on living on the road, you will need to plug in gear in camp. Providing 1521Wh, this reliable unit offers up the ability to charge your laptop or a fridge and runs on a wall charge or can be powered by BioLite’s SolarPanel 100 ($300). $1,699;

5. Yakima

Yakima SkyRise
HD Medium

We’re big fans of Yakima’s tent for the top of your car since you don’t have to always be beholden to campground reservations when you are out on the road. Just pull over in a legal spot or dispersed camping area and you’re all set. Bomber 600-denier fabric and heavy waterproofing keep out the weather, while inside, a built-in sleeping pad makes it cozier to sleep on your car roof than on the ground. Plus, it’s intuitive and quick to set up. $1,999;

6. Camp Chef


Roadside cuisine is certainly an art improved by the right cooking system. Sturdy, reliable, featuring two booming 20,000 BTU burners, this lightweight aluminum camp stove is most likely better than the stove in your last Airbnb. The top and side panels keep the wind out when it’s blustery and you can power it with a full-size propane tank. $390;

7. Katherine Homes


The designs on artist Katherine Homes’ trucker hats give you some flair and protect you from sun and glare behind the wheel. We are partial to the jackrabbit and wolf models, which celebrate two very different icons of North American wildlife. $34–$39;

8. Zeal


The perfect pair of shades is the cherry on top of a good road trip—and mandatory for safety behind the wheel. With frames made from recyclable stainless steel and plant-based polarized lenses make you cool as Tom Cruise in the cockpit. They are the perfect complement for a long drive. $159;

Summer is in full swing, and it’s time to hit the road in search of that perfect adventure. Here’s the gear to make the trip easier and more fun.

by Doug Schnitzspahn

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