It looks like winter might finally be loosening its hold, so thoughts are turning to summertime activities. For a lot of people, camping is a big one. I grew up camping, out in the middle of the national forest with only those items we brought in, no campground or amenities… and I loved it. However, now that I’m older, I find myself less enthralled by the idea of camping, and it mostly has to do with bugs.

It’s not that I think all bugs need to be destroyed, especially when I understand that when I’m camping I’m in their home and they have every right to be there. It’s that I don’t like them crawling on me or biting me and generally making my life miserable. I go through an astronomical quantity of bug spray every summer so as to avoid (mostly) mosquitoes.

Thermacell has a new camping lantern that looks like it’d be a fabulous way to kill two birds with one stone, without actually killing anything. It’s a lantern, of course, so you can have light after the sun goes down. But as we know, light tends to draw bugs. Not with this one! Thermacell is powered by a butane cartridge, and the heat from the cartridge is directed through a metal grill to warm a pad soaked in allethrin. I had no idea why that was a thing, either, but it turns out allethrin is a natural insect repellent found in chrysanthemums. Once the allethrin heats up, it permeates the air around the lantern (about 15 feet square), thus driving away the majority of bugs.

Neat, huh? You can sit playing cards at your picnic table well into the night without fear of being eaten alive by mosquitoes or other bugs. The only disadvantage is you wouldn’t really be using it during the day, but then most of the biting kind of bugs don’t come out until nighttime anyway. It should be noted that allethrin also tends to have an impact on bees, which are already having a hard enough time. But in general, bug-free camping sounds like a win all the way around.

You can pick up a Thermacell lantern for $60.00 US, with a pack of 10 butane cartridges and 20 allethrin mats selling for $55.00 US.

Source: Gadget Review

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