Thrifting Into The Outdoors

By: Brittany Holthaus

Whether you’re new to this whole outdoor hiking thing, or you’ve been around the block a time or two, I’m sure you have all heard of those big sporting good brands: REI, Patagonia, North Face, Columbia, Chaco’s, Nike, Coleman the list goes on and on.

I know you’re probably sitting there reading this asking yourself, “Okay why is she just listing off all these major brands?” What if I told you that you can get the same sporting goods from all those places, but pay only a third or even a fourth of the price? Sounds great, right? Well, you can do just that.

Many people run away at the thought of owning something that someone else once owned, but trust me there are many options of barely used, and even gently used sporting gear. Thrift shopping is a great way to get that same look and quality products, but also keeping your bank account from crying at the thought of you paying all that money at REI or elsewhere.

Below, I’ve included a couple photos of me from one of my recent hikes near my home in Colorado. In these photos, everything (but my socks) I’m wearing is thrifted!

            Hiking Boots: $20-Facebook

            Daypack- $15-Poshmark

            Under Armour Leggings: $5-Thrift Shop

            Pink Sports Bra: $3-Arc

            Grey Tank: $5-Arc

            Urban Outfitters Flannel: $10-Poshmark

            Sunglasses: $1-Thrift Store

Where to Look:

There are many options for places to look no matter where you live. Below I’ve listed a few of my personal go-to places.

· Thrift Stores: Goodwill, Arc., Plato’s Closet and other local thrift stores: These are a great place to browse every now and then. Sometimes, thrift stores like these are very hit or miss for me. One day I’ll walk out with a bunch of cool finds, other days it’s just the opposite, but a lot of these places will also get you the best deals on outdoor-wear.

· Used Sporting Goods Stores: If you are lucky to have one of these places near-by you are lucky! These places are filled with everything you need. From barely used hiking boots, backpacks, and even camping gear. They are also a bit more spendy than the thrift stores, but you’re still saving tons of money compared to those brand-named stores.

· Online Used Sites: Some of my favorite online used clothing and gear places are Poshmark, Amazon, and Craigslist. When you find those hiking boots on Amazon’s website that you just can’t live without, check and see if there is an option to buy used. Usually for most products on Amazon it will give you this option. You can still buy those boots that you have been dying to own, but not spend as much. Poshmark is another site I go to. It’s an online site where you can buy used/gently used clothing, bags, and even boots. Craigslist is always a great option to use for cheap, used gear. Proceed with caution on Craigslist though, there are a lot of scammers. If something seems fishy or the deal is way too good, it might be too good for a reason.

· Facebook: Facebook has a lot of for sale groups, join one of these groups and you’ll never know what you’ll find. Also, these for sale groups are location specific, so you will be able to search things that are for sale in your location.

These are just a few places I’ve went to find discounted gear. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this, including what you have found and where you thrift. Feel free to leave a comment! Adventure awaits!