Home Bronco Life David’s Gear of the Year for 2021
David’s Gear of the Year for 2021
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David’s Gear of the Year for 2021

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It was a long year in the Bronco community. Delays, deliveries, commodity restraints, and hard tops have all been given new meaning for Bronco fans. Many of us are still waiting for our Broncos and are still detailing our plans for what we will do with them once they arrive. I too am still planning, but part of my planning has been updating some of my outdoor adventure kit. I’ve bought some stuff this year that I shouldn’t have, but I’ve come across some real winners and wanted to pass on recommendations.  

Some of these links are affiliate links so, full disclosure, they support Bronco Nation financially. The others are shameless plugs for some of the merchandise items we’ve created, and that I love using personally.  

The Gazelle Hub Tent 

I’m a larger-than-average person. At 75in and an irresponsible number of stone, I’m not a prime roof top tent guy. I wanted a ground tent that could go up fast and had enough room for me and the family. Gazelle is the best tent I’ve ever used. I’ve got the set-up procedure to under two minutes, and it’s well made and feature rich. I love being able to detach the floor from the walls, so I can sweep out the tent after a trip. The all-important zippers haven’t failed once. If you’re in the market for a ground tent that isn’t one of those super light backpacker shanties, this is a great choice.  

Get it here: https://amzn.to/3DT4vDB  

Outland Living Propane Firepits

Nothing says camping quite like a campfire, and nothing says camping in 2021 quite like burn bans. The Bronco Nation team picked up some of these propane firepits from Outland Living for Bronco Super Celebration West. Given the restrictions placed on the event, we had to have fire pits that we could turn off, so propane pits were the play. Turns out, in my opinion at least, I like them considerably more than a woodburning pit. I went out and bought one myself, and I’ve loved it. It’s smokeless, starts every time with no effort, and being able to turn it off and walk away is super convenient. Plenty of people want the smoke and crackle of a wood fire, but for me, this is all I need.  

Get it here: https://amzn.to/3GK4X95  

Exped MegaMat Duo

After a stint as an infantryman in the Army, I’ve slept on the cold hard ground enough for a lifetime or two. Now, when I go camping, I’m looking for a bed pad comfort level that’s on par with my home mattress or better. The Exped MegaMat Duo meets that exacting, albeit somewhat glamp-ish, standard. We used this pad on a recent late-fall family campout, and it was amazing. It was well under freezing temperatures outdoors, and we didn’t feel any ground cold. We were still cold, that’s the reason there isn’t a sleeping bag on this list, but this sleeping mat was doing everything we could expect it to do.  

Get it here: https://amzn.to/3oS8FXY  

Jet Boil Minimo

The Jet Boil Minimo heats water to boiling fast. There are other Jet Boil stoves for a variety of use cases, but this is the one I got. The first time I used mine, I wasn’t prepared for how quickly it would do its job and made something of a mess. That aside, this is the best tool I’ve found for heating water for trail coffee, instant trail meals, and anything that requires hot water in the bush. It packs small, its light, and it does exactly what it says it will do quite well. Pair it with their non-stick pan, and it will serve up a good breakfast for a couple people in a pinch.  

Get it here: https://amzn.to/3mnlXdB

GSI Outdoors Destination Kitchen Set

This is a great camping cooking utensil set if you’re just getting into the Bronco life. It packs really well, includes an eating utensil set for four people, and is built with enough quality to last for a while. If there’s a strike against it, it’s so comprehensive that, if you’re a camping person, you might already have some of the things that are included.  

Get it here: https://amzn.to/3IPJ8qf  

The 10oz YETI Lowball

I picked this up from our Bronco Nation Gear store, and it’s become my favorite coffee retention and delivery device. You can go with any number of other sizes of YETI, but this is my favorite for coffee. I prefer the 20oz Rambler for ice water, but the Lowball is just right for the daily coffee ration that I fail to hold myself to. Coffee usually goes in before I leave for BNHQ, and it’s still hot when I arrive. I’d love for the top to be spill-proof instead of splash-resistant, but that’s the price you pay for ease of access.   

Get it here: https://gear.thebronconation.com/collections/frontpage/products/10oz-yeti-lowball

Bang & Olufsen BeoSound Explore

I’ve already written 1,400 words on the BeoSound Explore from Bang & Olufsen; I’ll not repeat that here. This is my favorite Bluetooth speaker that I’ve ever used, and I think it’s the perfect speaker for the Bronco owner. I’ve drop-tested numerous times, albeit not always intentionally, and it’s had a run in or two with water and always come out fine and sounding great. Since it’s a Bang & Olufsen product, it also looks good wherever you set it.  

Get it here: https://amzn.to/3s3bHdS

The Bronco Nation Packable Vest

Earlier in the year, we got some packable vests for our staff to wear at Bronco Super Celebration East and some other Bronco events. We loved them and put finally got a version for our gear store put together. This new version is the same vest that fits anywhere, but we replaced the double-sided tape and hook and loop patch we rigged up for some temporary branding with nice embroidery. This is a go-to layer for me in the colder months since it fits well underneath a jacket.   

Get it here: https://gear.thebronconation.com/collections/frontpage/products/bronco-nation-packable-down-vest

What gear did you pick up for your Bronco adventures in 2021? What are you adding this year? Tell us in the forums!

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Comment(3)

  1. I got all sorts of Bronco Nation swag already and I’m very pleased with the quality of everything I’ve purchased. I even got the B&O Beosound Explore. That puppy cranks! I’m still hoping to snag a large packable vest. I think I’ll have tons of swag by the time my own Bronco comes home. LOL

  2. How’s the heat output on the pit? Looks good, and after just going through the Marshall fire (pre-evac only) like the on/off switch!

    1. Hey Shoresy, the heat output, like a regular fire pit, builds the longer it’s on. I feel like it’s less than a big wood-burning pit at first but once the included lava rocks warm up, they start radiating a good amount of heat. We’ve found it comfortable for 4-5 people sitting around the pit down to 35-40F.

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