A Climber’s Christmas VI

Each year around this time theDIHEDRAL team comes together to make some gift recommendations for the climbers in your life (For previous lists, click HERE).  Usually we recommend gear, trinkets, and artwork that would satisfy climbers at any level.  This year we are sticking to that goal, but instead of focusing solely on the destination, we going to help with the journey.

Going climbing often includes long road trips to remote destinations, and today we are offering some gift ideas that may make that journey a little more comfy and a little more cozy.

So, the first recommendation is a little over the top (this pun is awesome, I stand by it).  It’s a little lot pricey, and probably something that a traveler would prefer to get for themselves, but if one thing that can make a road trip more enjoyable, it is S P A C E.  And, while the Yakima SkyBox 12 Rooftop Cargo Box isn’t the biggest cargo box on the market, it will open up a lot of space for some creature comforts.  Creature comforts like…

The Rumpl Original Puffy Blanket.  Yeah, this thing is a little overpriced for a blanket, but having a weather resistant blanket that can go from car, to ground, to tent, and back to car without having to worry about sand, dirt, moisture, or bugs makes it kind of worth it.  

What good is a travel blanket without a travel pillow?  The Nemo Filo is our choice for travel pillow.  It’s small, comfortable, and isn’t limited to the car.  Take it in the tent, the trail or out for a night of star gazing.

Now that we have some extra space and some extra comfort, let’s cover safety.  I think the most dangerous thing about long road trips is how distracting the phone can be.  Checking the map, trying to send texts, and transitioning between banging playlists is a lot to manage, all while also fighting road fatigue.  A proper phone mount can eliminate the dangers of looking down on your lap or mid-console for the next exit, text, or song.  I’m sure most phone mounts are pretty similar, but I prefer a magnetic air vent mount.  The iOttie iTap 2 sells for $20 on Amazon and has over 3,000 5-star reviews.  Easy to mount and easy to put away.  The magnetic holder is a nice little luxury too.

Speaking of playlists, you have to get your music from somewhere, I would recommend Spotify.  Mostly because they offer first month free (perfect for a road trip), and like iTunes, Amazon, and wherever podcasts are supported you can find new episodes of theDIHEDRAL Podcast every month.

With your comfort and entertainment needs met, it’s time to turn to food.  ***UNPOPULAR OPINION WARNING*** I don’t get the cooler craze!  In all fairness I have never used a YETI or RTIC cooler, but I can’t imagine spending $250-$500 for a cooler that weighs over 20LBS.  I’m not paying that much for any cooler, and I don’t want something that weighs as much a brick of lead.  So, we need a lightweight cooler, we need durability, and we need it to come in at under $100.  With those requirements the recommendation is the ICEMULE Classic 15L cooler.  This is a water-resistant soft cooler with a shoulder strap and offers 24 hours of ice.  It’s normally $80, but currently on sale for $48.  Not the cheapest cooler on the market, but if it keeps your perishables from spoiling, it should pay for itself over time.

I won’t go crazy with food recommendations for the trip, but a few of our favorite gas station snacks include Combos, Whatchamacallit, Sour Patch Kids, and Pringles.

Finally, there is entertainment.  Obviously, the alphabet game is a classic, but if you get bored of looking for “Q’s” and “X’s” there are a few games that will help keep the noodle spinning as you move from point A to point B.  Rubberneckers is a unique version of I-Spy.  It has some rules to follow but is easily adaptable to fit your needs as you’re travelling down the highway.  The second recommendation is Chatpack.  This is essentially a deck of conversation starters.  Some questions are better than others, but overall, this game has the quality of not only passing the time, but also allowing you to get to know your fellow travelers on a moderately deeper level.

That’s it for out 2022 list of recommendations, if we left anything out, let us know in the comments.

Happy Holiday’s everyone!!!

18 Replies to “A Climber’s Christmas VI”

      1. Haha…I love that there is a method to this! let me know if there is ever a time for Puffs, I don’t want to mess this up.

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  1. When my daughter and I got tired of the Alphabet Game we played a version that was a combination of reality-based and conceptual. We had to see something starting with the letter and agree that it was appropriate (an obvious one would be tree for T; less obvious might be seeing a quickly-moving coyote by the roadside which could be quick for Q). Yakima used to make a rooftop box called the “Space Cadet”. When the “K” fell off, the box proclaimed “YA IMA Space Cadet”.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That game sounds like such a huge improvement of the Alphabet game!

      I love that the “K” falling off of the “Space Cadet” is presented as inevitable. I now support the brand even more. Way to go YA IMA!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Seems like you got the most important things covered for the gifts to give during those trips.

    It was well thought out too with everything coinciding with price and good quality.

    For snacks do you like classic Lay’s potato chips?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I get so frustrated when nice things are pricey, I get it, but I do wish they could be a little less costly. Maybe I can learn to sew and make one?

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Like the considerations for cooler weight. A 1600cc air cooled engine carting around a surrounding lump of VeeDub bus needs all the help it can get. Great read as always. All the best.

    Liked by 1 person

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