From high-tech watches to super-bright headlamps, there’s no shortage of cool outdoor gear to drool over these days. However, one comparatively simple piece of gear is worth its weight in gold: the venerable adventure blanket. Similar to your favorite puffy coat or trusted sleeping bag—but in blanket form—you have to wonder why it took so long for adventure blankets like the EMS Camp Blanket to enter the outdoor scene. If you haven’t added an outdoor blanket to your kit yet, here are seven reasons why you’ll want to.

1. Versatility

One of the most surprising things about having an adventure blanket is just how often you’ll use it. From camping to the couch, beaches to backyards, and fire pits to festivals, there is seemingly no occasion that isn’t improved by the addition of a camp blanket, especially when there’s a chill in the air.

While most people will snuggle into their camp blankets to stay warm, that is just one use for them. Camp blankets are also an easy-to-maintain alternative to sitting on a towel at the beach, especially since their nylon shells are less liable to collect sand compared to their fabric counterparts. They are also awesome for picnics—pleasant to sit on, easy to shake out, and spill-repellent thanks to their water-resistant coatings.

2. Outdoor Bona Fides

Unlike the basic blanket in your closet or on your couch, adventure blankets have serious outdoor credibility. They feature similar construction and materials as your trusty sleeping bag and puffy coat—think ripstop nylons and high-tech fills—which helps them deliver the same durability, warmth, and performance you’ve come to expect from your prized insulated pieces.

3. Durability

Camp blankets are made with the outdoors in mind. They’re designed to stand up to rugged use that happens when camping and traveling—like cuddling up at the crag and huddling around a campfire. They’re also built to withstand the rigors of riding in a pack, being crammed into the corner of a van, and getting packed into a stuff sack or storage pocket. They also feature a weather-resistant coating to fight off light rain, a few snowflakes, or a spilled après beverage.

4. Variety

Thanks to the growing popularity of outdoor blankets, options abound—and it’s easy to find an adventure blanket that meets your needs. EMS makes its Camp Blanket in both one-person and two-person configurations. Thermarest’s Stellar and Juno blankets have different fill rates, meaning there is an option for those who run hot and those who run cold.

5. Packable

Because adventure blankets are made with the same compressible insulation and lightweight fabrics found in today’s sleeping bags and puffy coats, they’re super packable, a big advantage compared to that fleece blanket you’ve likely been toting around. The packability of outdoor blankets—many come with dedicated stuff sacks or integrated storage pockets—makes it hard to leave them behind, as they fit easily into your car, your backpack, or your beach bag.

Pro tip: Add a travel blanket to your “car kit.” It can serve as an emergency blanket if you get stranded somewhere and is easily deployed for everything from post-bike-ride beers to catching an impromptu concert in the park.

6. Pet-Friendly

Adventure blankets are built tough and while enough exposure to sharp claws and teeth can eventually lead to holes and tears, in general, they’re pretty pet-friendly. So go ahead and curl up with your crag dog or hiking hound knowing that your adventure blanket doesn’t collect fur like fabric does (and being water-resistant means it is also drool-resistant).

7. Cozy

High-tech materials, rugged construction, and high performance—none of it matters if a blanket is uncomfortable. Adventure blankets are downright cozy! Just think how great it feels to burrow in your sleeping bag. Now think about how often you do it. A few times a year? An outdoor blanket begs for you to enter its warm embrace and you can do it every day.

Whether you’re hanging at the trailhead, campsite, or at home, an adventure blanket can add to your enjoyment of the outdoors. In fact, by helping keep you warm, it can even help you spend more time outside—letting you hang around for one more parking lot beverage, campfire story, or even a few more pages of your book in the backyard.