New England Vintage Chic: 5 Ways to Find Outdoor Gear On A Budget
Friday, January 18, 2013
1. Second-hand sporting stores
Play It Again Sports is a superb store to find outdoor & sporting equipment on the cheap. There are seven locations throughout New England and all are unique in their own way. Most locations offer new and used winter sporting equipment during the winter months. A few examples of their ski brands are Fisher, K2, HEAD and Rossignol. This is also a great location to buy your kids hockey, field hockey, soccer, baseball, lacrosse and football gear & accessories. Make sure to call ahead to ask what gear they have in stock. Some stores may be worth driving to if they have what you’re looking for.
2. Sports Consignment Websites
Geartrade.com is a website that was designed to give people an opportunity to buy and sell outdoor gear. They have everything from ski goggles to bikini tops, all at discounted prices. To make it easy, you can use their search tool to find deep discounts, offering deals at 50%, 60%, 70%, 80% and 90% off. To put you at ease for buying online, there is a seller rating, description of the item, photos of the item, and an option to contact the seller with questions. Another plus is, Backcountry.com utilizes geartrade.com to get rid of returns and discontinued items.
Craigslist is great for apartment searching, job hunting and now tracking down outdoor gear! Use the Sporting Goods tab and utilize the search tool to narrow down the list. Every day offers new equipment and gear, so be ready to search often and be patient. If you find something you’re interested in, make sure the seller is legit and ALWAYS bring a friend along to pick-up any equipment.
4. "Mountain Town" stores
When heading to VT, ME and NH this winter for some snow action, make sure to stop by the local sporting stores for great deals. Many stores have an end of the season sale and some even have entire discount/consignment sections. If you see a sporting store has a “consignment basement”, get ready to become really excited. Most consignment and discount basements normally carry consigned outdoor gear and clothing, all at steep discounts. Some of the items you may find are North Face fleeces, Asolo hiking boots, HEAD skis, and so much more. Most prices will offer a discount that is 50-80% off retail prices. While this experience can be hit or miss, when you hit it, you will be hooked.
Shopping: Outdoor Gear Exchange, 37 Church St. Burlington, VT (802) 860-0190; International Mountain Equipment, 2733 White Mountain Highway, North Conway, NH (603) 356-7013 (Check out my review of IME, here.)
5. Friends & Family
Don’t be too shy to ask your Uncle Ted, who hits the golf course at least 25 times a year, if he has extra pair of golf clubs you can use. Or Tina, your friend who has been skiing since age 3, if she has extra skis you can try out. A lot of people have extra sporting equipment being unused. So go ahead, ask. What is the worst they will say? If no one close to you has equipment, then it’s time to head to your local second-hand sporting store or get searching on geartrade.com and craigslist.com. Life is too short to live inside your comfort zone… get out there and start experiencing new things.
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