Bring a backpack, camera, boots and more for your trip
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Publication date is going on and we broke the aromatic candles, trendy boots, comfortable household items and other seasonal favorites as an autumn chill fills the air. But one of the best things about this time of year is something that can’t be bought. I’m talking about the quintessential fall activity which is leaf watching, which means taking in all the beautiful foliage as the leaves turn into vibrant hues of red, orange, yellow and everything in between.
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If you are preparing for a road trip to admire these glorious sites, there are many practical items that we recommend that you prepare yourself to have a good time on the road or on the trails along the way. From a high-quality camera to a practical yet stylish backpack, here are seven top-rated products that will take your travel to the next level.
How to take a cheap fall foliage trip: Save money on day trips and driving
1. A good camera for taking pictures
While the photos don’t quite compare to seeing the wonders of the fall foliage in person, it’s always nice to look back and appreciate the fall weather. Plus, gorgeous photos of trees and fall leaves always look great in a framed photo for the home or as a gift. That is why we recommend that you bring a quality camera with you on your trip.
For beginners who want to get their hands on a digital SLR (single lens digital SLR camera), the Nikon D3500 is a great place to start. We ranked it our number one choice for a beginner’s camera Considering its compact build, it is easy to carry anywhere and it has smart features like the ability to send photo copies directly to your smartphone while you are taking pictures.
2. A cooler to pack snacks
For the trip ahead, you’ll want to save meals and snacks like packaged sandwiches, fruit, or tasty apple cider. Fortunately, we have tested many coolers on Reviewed so you can choose one that Actually keep your treats and drinks cool all day.
For a cooler that will stay in the car or for a relaxed day hike, the Yeti Hopper Two 30 is our overall best choice among all soft coolers we tested. Coming from the well-known (and beloved) brand Yeti, the Hopper is just as durable as the rest of its products with a double-stitched design that ensures no tears or tears. As far as insulation goes, it keeps items cooler than other soft coolers we’ve tested. It also has a waterproof zipper that really prevents melted ice from getting in. The only downside is that it’s more expensive, but we think it’s worth it.
3. A cozy jacket to stay warm
While we may not be in freezing temperatures just yet, a comfortable jacket is necessary for those who are eyeing the leaves, especially if you live or travel in the North.
A great jacket for layering is the Patagonia Better Sweater Fleece Jacket, which Review style writer Kevin Cortez compares to “to wear a blanket in the best way”. The jacket is part of Patagonia’s Better Sweater line, which means it’s “better” for the environment with 100% recycled polyester knit fleece. The jacket itself has plenty of useful pockets to keep your cell phone or wallet safe and features super-soft fleece material that will keep you toasty warm.
Another top notch choice for an overlay fleece is this one LLBean Sweater Men’s Full Zip Fleece Jacket– don’t worry, this style is also available in women size, too much. Reviewers love this lightweight jacket for its quality and variety of bright colors.
4. A pair of comfortable hiking shoes
Listen, even if you only make a few pit stops to peek at the foliage, a sturdy pair of hiking boots should be packed in your bag. No matter how difficult a trail is, we recommend a quality pair that will prepare you for the hike, especially in cold weather.
The Timberland Mt. Maddsen boots. which comes in both Men’s and Women’s sizes, are the best choices on REI. They are durable, have good traction on the sole to ensure a good fit and are designed for all weather conditions. A word of advice, however: try to snap off your hiking boots before your leaf viewing hike.
5. A top-notch backpack to hold it all
Between your camera, snacks, and everything in between, you’ll want to make sure you have a high-quality backpack to store everything on your trip. A travel backpack can be useful and versatile, especially for those who love the great outdoors.
Our favorite that we have ever tested is the Osprey Ozone Duplex 65 for men — or the Osprey Ozone Duplex 60 counterpart made for women, the biggest difference between the sexes being the weight capacity. Both Osprey offer the perfect blend of durability, smart design and comfort. This tote can also be split in half into a smaller day pack and cargo bag, making it ideal for a casual day hike or road trip to a more intensive backpacking or backpacking trip.
6. Our favorite cup for keeping coffee hot or water cold
The Yeti brand created our favorite hard and soft coolers, so it’s no surprise that the Yeti Rambler Stainless Steel Water Bottle is our preferred choice for the best water bottle for outdoors. Yeti’s stainless steel tumblers are one of its most coveted products for its powerful insulation design, keeping drinks perfectly hot or cold for hours, yes, even in extreme weather.
Another style of the Yeti Rambler, the Rambler 20 oz. Glass– is the perfect mug for sipping freshly brewed coffee, hot chocolate or hot tea while you peek from the car or on a hiking trail. Besides keeping your drinks at that perfect temperature, the Yeti Rambler is durable, dishwasher safe, and available in many stylish colors.
7. Lightweight chairs for sitting and relaxing
Whether you’re heading to a campsite or want to bask in the fall foliage at a gazebo, you’ll want to bring chairs that are comfortable and easy to transport. On our list of products at REI with a following cult is the Flexlite camping chair, a lightweight, foldable essential to take with you on your leaf viewing trip. Reviewers rave about the Flexlite, claiming it is easy to set up and take down. One reviewer writes: “Nothing beats sitting in one of them after a long day on the track.”
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Prices were correct at the time of this article’s publication, but may change over time.