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Thread: Got It All?

  1. #1
    Section Hiking Knucklehead Hooch's Avatar
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    Default Got It All?

    This evening a friend of mine calls and says, "Let's go to REI". So we go and look around. As we do so, it occurs to me that there is absolutely nothing there that I need. We're talking about this as we walk around the store and agree that the longer you've been hiking, the less gear you need to keep continually buying and upgrading once you have your setup dialed in the way you like it. Anyone else think this way? Comments? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?
    "If you play a Nicleback song backwards, you'll hear messages from the devil. Even worse, if you play it forward, you'll hear Nickleback." - Dave Grohl

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    Nalgene Ninja flemdawg1's Avatar
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    Yep its getting that way. I feel like i've gotten a Sil-Nyl, Down or titanium everything.

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    Trail miscreant Bearpaw's Avatar
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    A couple of years ago, I greatly reduced the number of part-time hours I worked at REI and spent most of my weekends actually using gear instead of selling or buying it.

    I've been MUCH happier.
    If people spent less time being offended and more time actually living, we'd all be a whole lot happier!

  4. #4

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    I constantly go to REI and look. . . buy small things, but nothing major in several years. I do have everything I need to backpack, but it's the looking for "just one more thing" that may be lighter, smaller, more efficient, etc. that keeps me in the store. I really have it bad. ; - )

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  6. #6

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    The only thing i remember ever buying at an REI store was a climbing harness.

    I've never bought any backpacking gear there.
    Their backpacks had way too many bells and whistles,
    their clothing was grossly overpriced,
    tents were way too heavy,
    and their sleeping bags were ok but i already had one of the best (Feathered Friends)

    but i do like their dividend system although i never used it. It's a great idea.
    Don't let your fears stand in the way of your dreams

  7. #7
    Section Hiking Knucklehead Hooch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fiddlehead View Post
    The only thing i remember ever buying at an REI store was a climbing harness.

    I've never bought any backpacking gear there.
    Their backpacks had way too many bells and whistles,
    their clothing was grossly overpriced,
    tents were way too heavy,
    and their sleeping bags were ok but i already had one of the best (Feathered Friends)

    but i do like their dividend system although i never used it. It's a great idea.
    Iguess I didn't word the question exactly as intended. I'm the same way at about any outfitter, be it small, large, local or when I'm traveling. Not just REI, per se. I just don't need that much and have my gear that I want dialed in to what works for me.
    "If you play a Nicleback song backwards, you'll hear messages from the devil. Even worse, if you play it forward, you'll hear Nickleback." - Dave Grohl

  8. #8

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    I consider my gear a quilt. It's been pieced together over the years with a few major purchases being made. I still use one of my fathers old aluminum pot sets, can't see getting rid of them they are light enough for me and work fine for the most part. Sleeping bag I have had since I was a kid, not torn or worn in any way..I've always kept it stored proper and all that jazz.

    My tent has to get smaller in the next couple years...I bought a nice bivvy style for my solo's that I like but the two person tent is still too heavy.

    For sure though, I have everything I need. There will always be things at REI that I WANT. Till I hit the lottery I'm sticking with my patchwork method

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hooch View Post
    Iguess I didn't word the question exactly as intended. I'm the same way at about any outfitter, be it small, large, local or when I'm traveling. Not just REI, per se. I just don't need that much and have my gear that I want dialed in to what works for me.
    Sorry, i wasn't trying to knock them. Just didn't remember buying anything there although i've been in their stores a few times.

    I too don't buy gear anymore.
    Maybe my Frogg Toggs could use a new set as they are getting old and i ripped the hood in the jungle here last time out.

    I am always on the lookout however for anything that is lighter weight than what i now carry but haven't found anything in the last few years since i switched to a styrofoam cup and my aluminum spoon.

    Possibly I'd buy a lighter version of my pocket rocket as long as i knew it was reliable.
    Don't let your fears stand in the way of your dreams

  10. #10

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    I went to REI to buy boot laces yesterday night, which I did, but I also wanted to buy a nylon (supplex style) brimmed hat (baseball cap style).

    They only had one brand, and it had a big "The North Face" logo right on the front.

    Yeah, like I'm gonna walk around with a freaking logo on my FOREHEAD all day. Sheesh.

    I'm still considering getting the hat and putting a patch over the logo, but I dunno.

  11. #11
    2008 SOBO Frick Frack's Avatar
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    After actually hiking the whole darn AT last year I realized how much you do not need ....so not much fascinates me at REI anymore.

  12. #12
    Registered User Philip's Avatar
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    Not to change the subject completely, but I am fascinated by the notion that so many of you still do your shopping in person at a "brick and mortar" store. I went the other direction many years ago in that the only things I purchase outside of the Internet would be consumables such as food and fuel. IMO you just can't beat the price competition and availability of information, not to mention the convenience factor.

    Otherwise to get back to the root issue in the string, I too no longer find it appealing to spend my time poring over gear offerings now that I have what I need. I suspect product saturation is typical in most any sport we get interested in and throw sometimes large sums of money into. The same phenomenon was the case in my last couple of obsessions as well; bought a sportbike and spent thousands accessorizing, and next got into DSL photography and did the same. In all three of these cases, I got to the point where I was all accessorized out and moved on to the next obsession to waste money on.

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    Registered User Summit's Avatar
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    It's easy to succumb to the "I gotta have the latest _____!" Sometimes upgrading makes good sense and sometimes it doesn't. Hiking gear is a lot like computers . . . if you get the latest and greatest, in a matter of months something "cooler" will come along.

    Best to get your money's worth out of your investment (unless you've got money to burn) and don't worry so much about having the best of everything. Getting a new piece of gear is fun, but not as fun as getting out there, hiking, and enjoying the woods/wilderness with your focus on that and not the gear!

  14. #14
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    I look, but frankly don't find much that I really "need". I've got my gear pretty much dialed in where I want it for warmer weather. I'm still tinkering with the cool/cold weather options (including my own tolerance for extreme cold...).

    Like you, Hooch, I can wander into REI or other outfitters and just don't see much that motivates me to pull out my wallet.

    On the other hand, at packitgourmet.com I can find lots of interesting consumables to claim my $.

  15. #15
    AT 4000+, LT, FHT, ALT Blissful's Avatar
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    I love looking at gear stores but rarely buy.

    Though I did just get a lightweight Smartwool long sleeve top at SAC recently.







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  16. #16
    Registered User shelterbuilder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Philip View Post
    Not to change the subject completely, but I am fascinated by the notion that so many of you still do your shopping in person at a "brick and mortar" store. I went the other direction many years ago in that the only things I purchase outside of the Internet would be consumables such as food and fuel. IMO you just can't beat the price competition and availability of information, not to mention the convenience factor....
    The ONE THING that brick-and-mortar stores have over .com stores is merchandise "in-the-flesh" - stuff that I can pick up, touch, fiddle with, try on, and talk about with the (sometimes)-knowledgable salespeople.

    Yes, I can come HERE and get lots more opinions (pro and con) for any piece of equipment that I find at a .com store, and yes, it's hard to beat .com prices (unless you get lucky at clearance time at the local outfitters), but I still like to handle the merchandise before I buy it...call me old-fashioned, but that's the way I am.
    Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass - it's about learning how to dance in the rain!

  17. #17
    Registered User cbost2678's Avatar
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    Well I hope to get to that day soon because my wallet is really feeling it!!LOL I was just there this weekend to "just look" came out 80 lighter!

  18. #18

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    It's nice to be able to try on boots but if I know the brand and my exact size, I'll buy it on the internet at a reduced price than from the local store. I still like to go to the store and "look" !! I'll pick up things and compare them in my mind with what I've got. Every now and then some new piece of equipment will come home with me.

  19. #19
    Registered User Fiddleback's Avatar
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    I often have the same feelings expressed in the OP...there's nothing I need. And, with a continuing effort to drop pack weight, the temptation to add some neat doo-dad to the mix is way down too. Still, there's 'always something'...

    So when I do shop for bp-related stuff I think I have the best of both worlds. I do a lot of online shopping. When I'm looking for bp stuff I first check out the availability and prices at CampMor and then comparison shop. While I like REI, I've always felt they have high prices. On the other hand, they have free delivery to the store (and it's fast in my experience). The end result is that since my online shopping increased so too has my REI purchases. The combination of free and fast delivery has won me over for many purchases and all I have to do is walk into the Missoula REI during my weekly in-town shopping trip.

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  20. #20
    Hike smarter, not harder.
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    I have the same problem, and thought it was just an REI deal. But I was in Santa Fe last week, and went to a local outfitter. Walked thru the store, and didn't see a single thing I wanted, much less needed. After my dealings with ULA, Gossamer Gear, SMD, and Tarptent, I've pretty muchly become a cottage industry guy anyway. And then there is the evil SAC popup.

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