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If you enjoy the outdoors, you know that there’s nothing better than the feel of fresh air on your skin, the smell of a warm fire, and the glow of your phone screen as you binge watch a show while the crickets lull you to sleep. If that last part didn’t sound strange to you, congratulations! You might be a tech-savvy “glamper.”

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The great outdoors used to mean going without, but the recent revolution in smart gadgets and mobile networks means there are countless fun tools to stay on the grid, even miles out in the woods.

Stay charged up

If you’re an avid glamper, you’ve probably discovered that nature doesn’t provide power outlets. At least, maybe not the kind you would expect. While you may not be able to plug into the nearest tree, nature provides some interesting ways to charge your gadgets if you can bring the right tools.

Solar is the go-to power source for many glampers, and companies like Goal Zero make some terrific portable solar panels that gobble up the sun’s energy and send it to your favorite devices through a simple USB interface. Not only is this great around basecamp, but some of their smallest panels include convenient clips that are perfect for attaching to a backpack as you enjoy a midday hike.

Solar is great, but an overcast sky can ruin a Netflix marathon in no time. Thankfully, companies like BioLite have another solution in their range of camp stoves that converts energy from burning twigs and leaves into a power source for your whole camping party. With tools like these, you’re never far away from topping off your battery.

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Bring the party to the campsite

Glampers bring the party to the woods, and nothing says “party” like some fun mood lighting. LED flashlights and lanterns are always good to have, and companies like LuminAID can outfit your crew with some innovative solar lighting that’s sure to brighten up any campsite. Even better, their products are waterproof, inflatable (they float!), and a few also include a variety of colors to choose from. Why stumble around your tent when you can start the next dance party?

Keep an eye on the homestead

Glamping may not offer all of the comforts of home (yet), but at least you can pick up a few tools to keep an eye on your home—and even control things from your phone—while you’re off in the wilderness. Today’s internet-based home security providers offer home automation integration, featuring smart security cameras that can send you motion notifications when something goes wrong (or give you peace of mind that everything is just fine). Video doorbells are another fantastic solution that gives you an always-on view of your entryway. (It’s never been easier to sign for a package while you finish the perfect s’more.) And smart thermostats and lighting options allow you to control your heat and lighting while you’re away—and turn them on for a more comfortable arrival home.

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Take your glamping to the next level

Whether you camp with a full car trunk or like to “rough it” with just the essentials, keep an eye out for smart gadgets the next time you’re at the camping store. A few key upgrades can change the way you experience the great outdoors.

Eric Murrell is a software developer and technology contributor to Xfinity Home. As the blogger for At Home in the Future, he enjoys sharing tips on how people can benefit from incorporating smart home and home automation features in their houses.

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Eric Murrell

Eric Murrell

Eric Murrell

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