Feeling the heat yet? We sure are. And now, we’re looking forward to weekends even more so we can ditch the uncomfortable high temps of Manila for the slightly more bearable hotness at the beach or in the mountains.
But prior to departure, you’ll definitely need to browse your checklist. Do you have all the essentials? When you’re done with that, scroll through it again to see if any or all of these eight items are on it. Trust us, you’ll need them too, especially if you’re using your vacation leaves for a longer stay outdoors.
Wherever we are, we’ll always look for a cup of coffee (preferably black, no creamer or sugar, thank you very much) to go with breakfast. Instead of relying on instant coffee with zero kick, or subpar hotel/hostel alternatives, we suggest bringing your own ground beans with you, along with the analog savior of many of our mornings, the Aeropress. It doesn’t require electricity, it’s easy to use and clean up, and it nixes the acidity from your morning brew. Need we say more?
Get your own Aeropress at Amazon (US$29.95 or around PhP1,500 without shipping fee) or through local online retailers Extraction Coffee (PhP2,490 for the kit plus a tote bag for travel) and Coffee Now (PhP2,200; kit only). Makati coffee shops Habitual Coffee, Commune, and Yardstick Coffee (PhP2,500) also sell the Aeropress.
We admit we always get excited about coffee. But before you sort that out, focus on the water situation! When you travel, you won’t always have clean/potable water available. The Brita Hard-Sided Bottle could be your next solution: the BPA-free water bottle also has a replaceable filter that makes your water cleaner, eliminating any odors in the process. And for those who prefer dainty sipping over all-out glugging, this 23-ounce bottle also has an easy-sip straw.
Buy your own Brita bottle starting at US$3.48 (around PhP170 without shipping fee) from Amazon.
We included the giant Braven BRV-XXL in our prior list of portable Bluetooth speakers, but we know that not all of you want to have the neighboring barangays soundtrip tagging along with you. This time around, we’re offering its more diminutive sibling, the Braven BRV-X. It’s game for a 12-hour music session, it can take water splashes and physical shocks like a champ, and it even charges up your other gadgets with 5200mAh of power. Remember to set it on outdoor mode so you get the sound quality you’re looking for!
You can buy your own BRV-X via the Braven website for US$199.99 (around PhP10,000 without shipping fee), or contact Braven’s local distributors for availability and price.
For the power-hungry
It’s fun to be out and about and data-/Wi-Fi-less, but at the end of the day, we’re all looking to get back on the grid. Charge your gadgets and juice up your electronics and accessories with the sturdy GoalZero Yeti 400 Lithium Portable Power Station! It has 428Wh of power for everything you’ve brought along with you for mountain or beach camping; along with features like surge protection, a replaceable Li-Ion pack, and solar charging via optional solar panels.
The Yeti 400 is a heavyweight, and we don’t just mean it figuratively. This 17-pound pack goes for US699.99 (around PhP35,000 without shipping fee) at the GoalZero website. There’s also a Facebook seller, GoalZero.ph, that has it in stock for PhP25,000.
Flashlights are essential in dark environments and after sunset (duh). So are head lamps for those who want to keep their hands free. The Black Diamond Spot is one of the most popular types of head lamps among hikers and trekkers, and for several good reasons. It offers 300 lumens, enables light-strength adjustment, is waterproof up to 1 meter for a 30-second immersion, and is great for both distance and spot lighting. A power meter and a Brightness Memory function also provide convenience and ease of use.
Get your new lights at the Black Diamond website, or via its local distributor, the Primer Group.
Here’s the problem with having temperamental weather like ours: you get too cold if you don’t have a jacket or parka, and then feel too warm once you put them on. Uniqlo ends this conundrum with its Pocketable Parka for Men! Its light polyester material won’t give you any hassles, it’s great for staying dry in wet weather, and it won’t take up too much space in your backpack or duffel bag.
Get your own parka at any Uniqlo Philippines store for PhP1,490.
Speaking of having enough space in your backpack... if you plan to bring any cookware along for your trek, you won’t do better than Sea to Summit’s famed and vibrantly colored X-Pot. This product series, which include 1.4-liter up to 4-liter capacities, expand when needed and compress to a flat form when not in use. The pots are made of food-grade silicone, with a hard-anodized aluminum base for camping stoves. We love our canned, ready-to-eat food, but we’d like to try out true outdoor cooking with this series!
Contact the Primer Group for the X-Pot’s local availability and price.
Don’t waste your efforts in planning and packing with inadequate luggage! A product like the 55-liter Boreas Tsum Trek Travel Pack isn’t just made for our aforementioned temperamental weather; it also doesn’t make your back hurt and minimizes the sweats, keeps everything organized inside, offers multiple weatherproof pockets, and gives you full access to your stuff through Boreas’ Around-the-World zipper.
Grab your own Tsum Trek pack through the Boreas website; the prices top out at US$225 (PhP11,300 without shipping fee) for its largest variant. You can also contact local distributor Jake Bros for local pricing for and availability of the small, medium, and large packs.