Why Good Gear Matters

beginning climbing by  otakuchickHaving the right gear matters more than most people are willing to admit. Ever try running with the wrong shoes and socks? It can prove to be a painful experience that will keep you off of running for the rest of your life. The same goes for just about any activity when it comes to the outdoors. While beginner’s gear can always get the job done, having the right gear is the most important thing.

Doing something that’s out of your normal element is an experience that can be difficult and exciting for beginners. When you have the wrong gear, the experience can be quickly ruined because the gear can’t do the job correctly or well. We’re not advocating getting the most expensive, highly specific gear out there but instead we want to help bring new people to the outdoor activities we love without turning them off to things like hiking, climbing, and camping. So what are the basics you need to enjoy your time outdoors?


You’ll need good, sturdy shoes and socks that prevent what we call hotspots — areas that rub and cause blisters. When you’re starting out on basic trails, you can get away with sneakers for a while but after you get past the beginner trails and start going on longer hikes and doing more technical trails, you’ll want to invest in a real pair of hiking boots with appropriate socks and sock liners.


Climbing has one of the highest gear thresholds for entry because you want to stay safe—it’s really dumb to climb without the proper safety gear. To get started, it’s best to try out the sport with friends who already have the gear. Once you’re ready to buy your own gear, you’ll need shoes, a harness, a helmet, ropes, and hardware. Since there’s a lot that goes into it, you’ll need help. We have staff members who are advanced climbers who can help you get started on your climbing gear collection with great advice and guidance.


Car camping is different from backpacking, and glamping is something else again. Depending on how many creature comforts you want, you can gear up to excess or strike out with just the basics. Before getting into minimalist camping under the stars, beginners usually start out with a pack, tent, sleeping bag, and sleeping pad. Add in cooking gear and you’ve got what you need to go camping at the start. You can upgrade to lighter, minimalist options as you get more into camping or go gear crazy and really go all out to fit your personality.

We have staff members who know gear well who can help you get started right so you can enjoy a new outdoor activity without making it more difficult than it needs to be so come visit us at our store.

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