Editors’ Picks: What We’re Getting Our Moms for Mother’s Day


Mother’s Day is Sunday, May 8. If you’re looking for a gift and haven’t quite figured it out yet, don’t worry. I hope this list of our top editors’ picks sparks creativity and helps you choose. . (We also interviewed mothers who love the outdoors and asked them what they really want.) Here are the clothes, gear, and gear that Outside staff members and contributors give gifts for Mother’s Day.

Theragun Mini ($199)

(Photo: Courtesy of Theragun)

In the past five years, my mother has had a knee and a hip replaced, and these operations have slowed her down. But last year, at age 71, she made a serious investment in her fitness: she started strength training twice a week with a personal trainer and became strong as hell. We worked together for the last month and I found myself legitimately competing with her on battle ropes in my backyard. All this strength comes at the cost of his pain a few days a week. Theragun products have been a key part of personally staying in endurance sport as I get older, so I thought this Mother’s Day I would share it with my mom. I give her the Mini because it’s easier to maneuver than Theragun’s larger offerings and she can take it with her when she visits me and puts me back in the ground. —Joe Jackson, Equipment Guy

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Prana Genevieve Sun Hat ($45)

Genevieve Prana Sun Hat
(Photo: Courtesy of Prana)

My mom loves hiking and being outdoors, but she’s very conscious about sun exposure, so she always wears a wide-brimmed hat. The large soft brim of this one from Prana will provide the sun protection she’s been looking for, while a drawstring will secure the hat for windy walks on the beach. I hope she also finds it cute enough to wear to summer parties and other social events. —Gloria Liu, Contributor

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Original Teva Sandals ($55)

Original Teva sandals
(Photo: Courtesy of Teva)

It’s a nostalgic purchase. Teva hit the world around the same time my wife and I met in the 90s, revolutionizing summer footwear (it’s a flip-flop that’s a shoe!). We met at the beach and if I remember correctly, everyone wore Tevas that summer. Sporty sandals have gotten more sophisticated since the mid-90s, but sometimes simplicity is best. The Original is comfortable without being over-engineered, secure enough to handle water service or light hiking, but still good looking enough for sporting around town. It’s something I know she can wear in the river when we’re paddling, but also for all-day outdoor festivals or pedaling around town on a hot summer day. Her original pair was a Kelly green, but I think she’ll love one of the brand’s new colorful designs. –Graham Averill, Gear Columnist

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Outdoor Research Tundra Airgel Booties ($62; 30% off)

Tundra Outdoor Research Airgel Boots
(Photo: Courtesy of Outdoor Research)

I think one of the greatest gifts you can give is comfort in inhospitable conditions. A good rain jacket opens up a world of rainy adventures, and the right layers take cold weather from a no-go to an accessible obstacle. On that note, my mom almost always gets cold, so on a recent backpacking trip, I asked her to bring my spare pair of Outdoor Research ankle boots. At just nine ounces, they packed a big punch. Even in temperate conditions, having something comfortable and dry in camp when we were posted overnight made a big difference in its overall comfort and temperature regulation. They are also perfect for ski trips and car camping. —Abigail Barronian, Editor-in-Chief

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Miir Tomo Insulated Thermos ($60)

Miir Tomo Insulated Thermos
(Photo: Courtesy Miir)

Not a day goes by that my mother doesn’t drink at least one pot of green tea. Unsurprisingly, she has a lot of very strong opinions about tea, including the best blend (genmai-cha), the optimal container to drink it from (cast iron teapot and double-walled mug without handle at home, cap with vacuum insulated screw cup when it’s on the go) and the ideal temperature (very hot). Miir’s Flip Traveler has been my favorite for years, so when I saw the brand had made a bigger thermos with two twist off cups/lids, I knew they would love it and it would meet my needs. its rigorous standards. The Tomo is reminiscent of the thermoses she filled with cocoa for our childhood toboggan rides. But unlike those little containers, in which our drink went lukewarm at lunchtime, Miir’s exclusive double-walled vacuum insulation will keep his tea piping hot. Plus, the design is sleek enough to rival her favorite Japanese-designed single-use travel mugs. —Miyo McGinn, Editorial Assistant

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Astral E-Linda PFD ($125)

PFD Astral E-Linda
(Photo: Courtesy of Astral)

Living on the subtropical border of the southern Appalachian Mountains, we are surrounded by water, whether it’s the gentle river that meanders through town or one of the massive lakes the TVA built at the time. Paddling as a family has become a custom, and keeping my wife alive is a top priority because I’m not smart enough to raise our kids alone. Enter the E-Linda, a PFD that meets all safety standards while emphasizing comfort. Unlike most recreational-specific PFDs on the market, the Layla has a women-specific fit that leaves room for her chest and torso. The full-zip front makes it easy to put on and take off, while a slim, ventilated back makes it comfortable when seated in a kayak with a seat back. Personally, I like the dual storage pockets that are big enough to hold beer cans. It’s the kind of PFD designed to be worn all day when we’re paddling gentle rivers or traversing large mountain lakes looking for waterfalls or rocks to jump off of. -GEORGIA

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Brooks Revel 5 Running Shoes ($100)

Brooks Revel 5 Running Shoes
(Photo: Courtesy Brooks)

Mid-May sees active people of all ages escaping from their basement treadmills, hitting sidewalks and parks, and thinking about new shoes. Shopping for any fitness apparel can be tricky, given individual preferences, with shoes in particular. But this versatile model from Brooks is suitable for most women for almost any activity. The ride is lightly cushioned with an energetic rebound, the platform is neutral yet stable, with a fairly wide base of support and a moderate heel-to-toe drop leading to a quick toe roll. The knit upper conforms to a variety of feet with a comfortable, stretchy fit. I get (another) pair for my wife, at her request, who says these are her favorite walking and running shoes – the ones she wears for any day, whatever training or surface. —Jonathan Beverly, Senior Editor

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Wolf Pack Pro Front Runner Storage Box ($70)

Wolf Pack Pro Front Runner Storage Box
(Photo: Courtesy of the front runner)

My mom taught me to love car camping and continues to get out and explore every summer. She recently bought a teardrop trailer to make things a little cozier. I’m going to help her organize it by getting her two of these sturdy boxes. A big favorite in the terrestrial community, Wolf Packs are the perfect size to store everything from weekend clothes to a nature photography setup. Made from an almost indestructible plastic, they can rattle around in a trailer or truck bed and be just fine. Front Runner also offers a foam insert that protects fragile gear inside. The new Pro version is completely waterproof and dustproof so they can spend the night outside in the rain or be tied to a roof. The new latches make the Pro version much easier to open, and they’re stackable, so she can throw two or three into a corner to save space. —Jakob Schiller, Contributing Editor

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Hest Foam Sleeping Pad ($299)

Hest Foam Sleeping Pad
(Photo: Courtesy Hest)

Our family loves car camping, but my wife hates sleeping on thin backpacking mattresses that sacrifice comfort to save weight. We’ve tried the big air mattresses, but they always seem to slowly deflate until we’re basically sleeping on the floor. I hope The Foamy will be the solution that will allow us to camp. Instead of relying on air chambers like most camping mattresses, the Foamy is made from closed-cell memory foam, just like the mattress in our bed at home. And it’s 3.9 inches thick, so we shouldn’t feel any rocks or sticks that I forgot to remove from the tent site. The sacrifice is obvious: the Foamy weighs 11 pounds. But if we’re just car camping, I’m willing to haul it from the truck to the tent. I hope the Foamy will be so comfortable that it will suggest that we go camping more often. It’s not cheap, but can you put a price on a good night’s sleep? -GEORGIA

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Wild Rye Freda 7 Inch Women’s Bike Shorts ($109)

Wild Rye Freda 7 Inch Women's Bike Shorts
(Photo: Courtesy of Wild Rye)

My mom recently started riding a fat bike to shred a singletrack along the lip of Lake Superior in northern Minnesota. (Her goal? To take backcountry dates with my dad to the next level.) Because she’s a fearless badass at nearly 60, I’m sending her a pair of these bike shorts from Wild Rye, an outdoor clothing brand founded by women. where designers hand-draw these prints, inspired by their wanderlust and gratitude for the outdoors. The breathable nylon-spandex UPF 50 fabric will provide forgiving four-way stretch while my mom works out her technique, and a seven-inch inseam will be a modest length on her summer sunset walks. No doubt, sooner or later, my father will break his ass to follow. —Patty Hodapp, Acting Digital Director

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NRS River Bed Sleeping Pad ($170)

(Photo: Courtesy of NRS)

My wife has a knack for perforating sleeping pads, destroying two per season on average. And despite my MacGyvering with patch kits and even Moleskin (which works, by the way!), the result always seems to be a slow leak that renders those pads unusable at three in the morning. I’ve scoffed at the price of NRS’ incredibly durable and comfortable pads for years. But now I realize that I could have already bought two for the money I spent replacing inferior pads. This is the rare case of a large initial investment paying off over time. —Chris Keyes, Editor

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