Summer Adventure Prep: Save money with used camping gear

Dec 19 2017, 11:35 pm

Summer is here! It’s time to uncurl from your desk chair and live outside. Fresh air, hard-earned cookouts, starry skies — camping is one of our favourite summer escapes.

Whether car camping or backpacking, you need to invest in gear before your adventure. It makes sense to buy new on highly personal equipment like footwear. But for tents, packs and many other types of camping equipment, you’ll save a lot of money by buying used camping gear.

Here are five outdoor essentials that are easy to find for resale in the used camping gear market.


Tent shelter comes in many forms. The North Face makes a six-person Docking Station that’s virtually a laneway house. MSR, REI and MEC make ultra-light two-person camping tents. Genji has a super easy to use pop-up family beach tent.

What do these all have in common? They’re all expensive the first time around yet frequently come and go in used tent marketplace in the online classifieds

Sleeping bags

Whether you opt for classic down or synthetic (because it’s more effective fending off the PNW damp), camping sleeping bags start around $100 and get fairly steep, with many $400 and higher. If the idea of a used sleeping bag creeps you out, put it in perspective. It’s no different than sleeping in a hotel bed with clean sheets.

Read up on how to wash sleeping bags.

Backpacks and baby carriers

Say you covet a really sleek backpack from home-grown brand Arc’teryx, but it’s well out of your price range. Shop used. Gear fiends are always upgrading and selling their packs. Daypacks, weekenders, multi-day backpacks, and summit backpacks are all for sale used.

Heads up for parents of babies and tots: there are tons of gently-used baby hikers and baby carriers too. Baby hikers are expensive yet only useful for a short window of a kid’s life, so the market is full of gently-used options.

Camp cooking equipment

Campsite grills, when they exist, can take more time to advance clean than to use. We prefer to bring our own camp cooking equipment. Camp cooking gear ranges from retro-style Coleman models similar to the ones your grandparents used car camping to the ultra-mod BioLite camp stoves that run on a few twigs, boil water in three minutes, come with a grill attachment and can even charge your devices via USB. Because of the level of investment required for grills and stoves (around $100), it’s worth checking the resale market.

Camping accessories

Pocket knives, lanterns, cook sets, coffee makers and more are all available for resale. In some instances, take pocket knives for example, the old school version can possess more aesthetic appeal, than the new.


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DH Vancouver StaffDH Vancouver Staff

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