Head out this summer with the right gear for the road less traveled. More outdoor equipment companies are creating eco-friendly camping gear that use less energy, fewer resources and less-toxic materials. This guide from Sustainable Travel International lists items produced using resource-efficient, recycled, renewable and/or recyclable materials.
• Venture out with a backpack made of 98 percent recycled materials (mostly recycled plastic bottles).
• Solar panel-embedded packs and messenger bags keep cell phones, iPods, satellite radios and most personal electronics fully charged. Get the bags at Reware, Clear Blue Hawaii, Voltaic and Eclipse Solar Gear.
• Mary Jane’s Farm: organic, instant and quick-prep meals in recyclable packaging.
• Natural High: natural gourmet camping foods contain no artificial ingredients or MSG.
• Clif Bar: all-natural energy bars made from 70 percent organic ingredients.
Camp stoves and ovens
• ZZ Manufacturing: a lightweight Sierra stove utilizes a battery and fan to produce 18,000 BTUs from burning pine cones, wood chips, tree bark, charcoal.
• Multi-fuel stoves that burn automobile diesel can burn biodiesel instead (they may require a separate primer). Try Mountain Safety Research‘s XGK-EX, the Optimus Nova, the Primus OmniFuel
• Global Sun Ovens soak up solar radiation and reach 360 to 400 degrees in about 45 minutes.
Natural sunscreen and insect repellent
• Avoid DEET and other harmful additives with All Terrain‘s all-natural sunblock and insect repellent packaged in recycled and biodegradable containers.
• Patagonia‘s Capilene fabric (a polyester with wicking action) contains at least 50 percent post-consumer fiber from recycled Capilene garments. Its Synchilla Fleece is made from recycled soda bottles. You’ll also find organic cotton clothing.
• Tilley offers stylish hats, pants and shirts made from hemp blended with recycled polyester.
• Hemp Sisters sells hemp and natural-fiber apparel produced by Women’s Cooperative and fair trade groups.
• Timberland and Nike use environmentally friendly materials and support sustainable product innovation.
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