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Cairn Subscription Box Review + Coupon – July 2020

Cairn Outdoors Subscription

Cairn is a monthly subscription box that sends members outdoors, adventure, and fitness gear. Cairn’s goal is to enrich your outdoor adventures by connecting you with best-in-class products. It was chosen as one of our favorite subscription boxes for men but is suited to adventurers of all genders.

FYI – COVID-19 Update, from Cairn: 

Due to the impacts of COVID-19 on distribution centers, Monthly Cairn Subscribers, as well as Monthly Cairn Gift recipients that are beyond their first month of the gift term, may experience delays of up to two weeks on their Monthly Cairn delivery. Cairn products that are not experiencing shipping delays:

  • Initial Cairn Gift deliveries (the first month of the gift term)
  • Cairn Apparel
  • UnStacked orders
  • Obsidian Subscriptions

If you have questions about your order, please email [email protected]

Cairn Outdoors Subscription

This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out our review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)

Cairn Outdoors Subscription

About Cairn

The Subscription Box: Cairn

The Cost: $29.95 per month with discounts for 6- and 12-month subscriptions

COUPON: Limited Time Only! Use code MSA20 to save 20% off your first box when you sign up for a 6 or 12-month subscription! .

The Products: Outdoor gear, including apparel, nutrition/energy products, skincare, and other essentials to keep you prepared and comfortable on your adventures.

Ships to: The US for free, Canada for $5, and internationally for $10

Cairn July 2020 “Good Taste” Review


This is the monthly info guide that comes with every Cairn delivery, called the Cairn Scout. It gives an intro into this month’s theme, which is food-related, and a blurb about each of the four items included in the shipment. Open it up and you’ll find the Cairn Scout guiding you to visit the Mont Y Boca website’s how-to videos for camp cooking and information about upgrading your outdoor experience to Cairn Obsidian, their quarterly box that features larger items. Unfold it once more and you’ll find a community feature, subscriber perks, their Adventure Upgrade (which is sent to randomly selected subscribers—login to your account to learn more), and more.


Mont Y Boca Trailmeals Cookbook – Retail Value $13

This pocket-sized trail cookbook packs a ton of information into a small booklet! It has a hard, shiny cover and an elastic band to hold it closed, but it’s still very lightweight. It offers incredible-looking recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, and “trailgate” (tailgate-style finger foods to share), all of which use 10 ingredients or less. But before they delve into the details of each recipe, they offer checklists—yes! A camper’s best friend! There’s one for cooking supplies, one for clothing, and one for camping equipment. I can see myself referring to these checklists again and again instead of scratching them down on a sheet of paper that I inevitably misplace leading up to each outing. The meals themselves are all represented with photographs, and they all look incredibly appetizing. I admit it does seem a hint overwhelming to follow a recipe while on the trail—usually we just wing it—but I can see the result being really satisfying, especially if you’re adventuring with friends and want to make it extra epic. This is a really cool item that I would probably never buy, but I’m so excited to explore, and I’m definitely going to keep it in mind as a gift idea for fellow outdoorspeeps.


Humangear FlexiBowl – Retail Value $14.99 (currently on sale for $13.49)

I received a trail bowl of a different variety in a Cairn delivery a little over a year ago (see it here)—that one was bento-box-style and kind of bulky, and I passed it along to a friend who was doing a lot of world traveling at the time. So it ended up being the bowl/utensil set he packed in his suitcase to use for street food or in hostels, rather than on the trail. This bowl is a much better trail option in my opinion! It can be folded and squished anywhere in your pack that you have a little extra space, and then holds its shape well and is easily cleaned. I think it’s cool that you can fold this bowl down to make it smaller if you wish, and faintly along each side there are measurements indicated: mL on one side (it holds 700 mL) and cups on the other (it holds 3 cups). It would also make a great water bowl if you’re hiking with your dog! We brought our dog on our first backpacking trip and had him carry his own food & water—this bowl would have fit great in his pack.

Nice to know: this bowl is made from premium, FDA-food-safe silicone, is BPA-free, PC-free, and phthalate-free.


Humangear GoBites Quattro Retail Value $14.99 (currently on sale for $13.49)

My husband and I each have aluminum sports we keep on carabiners on our packs—even on our day packs if we’re going on a day trip or at a music festival. Sometimes I wish I had a little butter knife to go with it, but otherwise it’s a good setup for us, so I’m thinking I’ll actually keep this set in my car for those random times when they’d come in handy. I’m really impressed with the design of this set—first of all, you just nudge the entire case out of its packaging instead of having to rip it or find scissors, which I desperately wish were the case with more products. But once the packaging is out of the picture, the case is sleek, sturdy, and easy to hold, and the utensils are the same. This set comes with chopsticks (as opposed to a knife in the Trio set) and a toothpick, which is a nice touch. I would have preferred the Trio set personally, but I can see noodle-lovers getting really excited over the chopsticks. Each utensil clicks satisfyingly into place—the quality is definitely there.

Nice to know: these are made from extremely durable nylon and backed by a lifetime warranty. Like the bowl, Humangear utensils are also BPA-free, PC-free, and phthalate-free.


Skout Organic Salted Chocolate Protein Bar, 1.9 oz. — Buy a 12-pack here for $29.99

This month’s trail snack is a seriously decadent, plant-based chocolate protein bar—right up my alley! I love that its ingredients are simple and straightforward. The protein is supplied by sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds, but the bar is extremely smooth, a lot like an Rx Bar. It’s long gone by now—my husband was just getting back from a long bike ride as I was tasting it and he proceeded to inhale the rest of it, giving it two thumbs up. But if I were to bring this on the trail with me I may either split it or save it for a sit-down break, because it’s quite chewy and I tend to prefer lower-effort fuel when I’m on a long, exhausting hike.

Verdict: This was easily my favorite Cairn delivery this year! The reason: July’s food theme meant the curation included items that can be used right away, even if you don’t have a camping trip, backpacking trip, or other big nature outing planned (maybe you’re avoiding the heat, maybe you’re continuing to lay low in quarantine, maybe you don’t feel you can take the time off work during this weird year). My favorite item this month was the trail cookbook, which I look forward to using in my kitchen at home first so that some of the recipes feel familiar when I try them in nature!

This box costs $29.95 (less if you subscribe for longer), including free shipping, and the contents add up to approximately $42.48 (using sale prices for the 2 Humangear products and an estimated cost of $2.50 for the protein bar). This value is the norm for Cairn.

To Wrap Up: 

Can you still get this box if you sign up today? Based on their subscription model, your items may vary based on your survey responses and boxes you have received in the past. 

COUPON: Limited Time Only! Use code MSA20 to save 20% off your first box when you sign up for a 6 or 12-month subscription! .

Value Breakdown: This box cost $29.95 + free US shipping, but I estimate it contained $42.48 worth of goods. That comes down to a value of approximately $7.49 per item.

Check out all of our Cairn reviews, and learn more about our readers’ favorite fitness boxes.

Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!

What do you think of Cairn this month? Did you get any of the same items as me?

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Written by Christen Russo

Christen Russo

Christen is a smile collector, outdoors enthusiast, and appreciator of soggy French fries. Her favorite subscriptions involve eco-friendly products and clothes, nature supplies, stationery, and coffee. She can be easily won over with a good sheet of stickers.

Posted in Cairn Reviews, Subscription Box Reviews| Tags: cairn | 5 comments

Comments (5)

  1. The cookbook was a total miss for me, I was expecting something clever where a handful of ingredients could be utilised to make two or three meals, or for example a breakfast / lunch. If I want to bring ingredients for a one off meal I will just find one I like online and save the weight.

    The cutlery seems a bit bulky but I can imagine giving it to someone as a nice way to eat at the office, although that seems a little against the idea here, so not sure (they’d probably prefer a knife too).
    Bowl seems ok though and I’ll probably use camping, but hardly innovative as its just another silicon bowl. All in all quite an underwhelming selection. This was my first month so will try one more month and hope it picks up a bit 🙂

  2. I personally got this exact box (different snack) and the cooking book was a total dud to me. All the recipes use different ingredients so I would actually find myself with more weight and space taken up with more stress. I love the concept, hate the recipes.
    I do still feel like this box has great value though.

    The Cotopaxi bag is worth $75 and we got the most bright pretty bag. A 6 month subscription is around 170. If you factor in the bag you’re paying around $95 for the subscription. Making it approximately $15.83 per month. That’s almost half price at that point and definitely worth it for us even if the cookbook is a dud.

    I’ve tried battle box and Nomadik and in the two months I’ve had Cairn I already like it better.

    • It’s funny, I didn’t realize until reading through your comment that I was sort of imagining myself picking 1 recipe from this cookbook per camping/backpacking trip—or maybe 1 dinner + 1 appetizer/dessert. It would be a fun treat and then back to freeze-dried dinner for the rest of my meals, haha. I agree with you, it would be too much to prep & pack all the ingredients for several of these recipes!

      Thanks so much for sharing your experience with the free gift with your subscription. I think the Cotopaxi brand is amazing and I, too, love the colors they offer. So glad you’re happy with yours!

  3. If they could offer more value I’d sign up. They always include products I’m not interested in or already have so the value doesn’t add up for me. I still love reading their reviews though!

    • I hear you there—some months I think this box would be best suited to someone who is just beginning to build up their collection of outdoor gear. But sometimes I’m also happy to have an upgrade to my old items! Either way, thanks for reading my reviews!

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