Our favourite outdoor gear of 2021

By Justin Walker 23 December 2021
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In 2021 we tested loads of adventure equipment, from tents, stoves and sleeping gear to backpacks and plenty more. Here are our favourites.

Companion ProHeat Low Pressure Two Burner Stove

This two-burner stove from Companion Outdoor carries a brilliant party trick: its low-pressure burners mean you can expand your camp cooking repertoire thanks to the ability to control the simmer level of the stove exceptionally well. Plus, it can fit two large pots – always a welcome bonus for family camp cooking. See the full review here.

OZtrail Fast Frame Lumos 6P Tent

You wanna get to camp and get set up fast when you’re on an outdoor weekend away with the family, and this technological marvel from OZtrail fits the bill for being under shelter in no time at all. Besides the fantastically fast set-up time, this nifty outdoor home away from home also includes interior lighting, a cool interior and plenty of ventilation See the full review here.

Bialetti Moka Express

If something has been manufactured with minimal design changes – and has sold truckloads – over more than 80 years, it must be good. And this mobile coffee maker, from the famous Italian brand, does just that, brewing a brilliant coffee every time. Being practically bombproof in its construction also means you’ll be whipping up a magical caffeine infusion outdoors for decades. See the full review here.

Macpac Deluxe Double Sleeping Mat

Just when you thought you had resigned yourself to a double sleeping mat being sadly ‘too big’ to bring on your camping adventure, Kiwi brand Macpac releases this absolute belter. Offering excellent comfort for a reasonable weight, this big-bopper mat will have you finding any excuse to make sure there’s room in your car to pack it for that camping weekend. See the full review here.

Sea to Summit Sleep System

The Aussie outdoor brand knocked it out of the park with this sleep system. Comprising an ultra-light (and ultra-warm) four-season sleeping bag, a bag liner, insulated sleeping mat and even an ultralight pillow, this complete package from Sea to Summit kept our testers warm across Australia and the New Zealand Alps during the 12 months of testing. See the full review here.

The North Face Women’s Flight VECTIV

We’ve had these all-singing, all-running trail shoes on test for around nine months now and they continue to amaze our test team. The combo of loads of comfort and support, along with the fancy new VECTIV technology that The North Face developed, ensured these were a must-include for our fave gear this year. See the full review here.

Osprey Aether Plus 85

Backpack icon Osprey continued its near 50-year tradition of being top of the field when it comes to designing smart, innovative and reliable hiking packs with the release of this large load-lugger. Its light weight and comfortable fit makes that huge capacity seem far less when the pack is full, ensuring easy days on the tracks. See the full review here

Macpac Microlight

Macpac has been producing the Microlight for what seems like forever and the reason is simple: this solo four-season tent is practically indestructible, offering seriously robust construction and all the essential features, combining to offer the assurance that you’ll be getting reliable and safe shelter from this tent for many years. See the full review here.

Ford Ranger FX4 MAX

The dual-cab 4WD ute is now pretty much first choice for any adventurous families looking to get out and explore the outdoors. Whether you need a vehicle to lug all your outdoor ‘toys’ (think: bikes, kayaks, tents, canoes, etc.) or you need that plus the capability to get you into that pristine remote campsite, these are the vehicles that’ll get it done. The Ford Ranger FX4 MAX offers all of this plus five-star safety and plenty of room for all your gear (and family!). See the full review here.

MSR Pocket Rocket Deluxe Stove Kit

Another iconic outdoor equipment brand kept the good stuff coming in 2021, with MSR’s diminutive cooking powerhouse proving that old adage that size really doesn’t matter – especially when it comes to cooking up a storm in the outdoors. With the complete system – stove, pot, bowl, fuel and lifter – being all stored together, it is a bikepacker and hiker’s dream. See the full review here.

Yakima OnRamp e-Bike Carrier

With e-bikes taking off in popularity, their additional weight over a traditional bicycle means transporting them is a bit more of a challenge. Yakima has sorted this, though, with its clever OnRamp bike carrier able to carry two bikes of up to 30kg in weight each. Plus, there’s a nifty slot-in ramp for super-easy loading. No wonder we can’t get it back from our tester… See the full review here.