In these times of stay-at-home orders and social distancing, it’s natural to feel a hankering for the great outdoors. Ironically the best place to shop for outdoor goods is indoors with a phone or computer. Why visit an outdoor clothing and equipment shop when you can find the same gear online at a fraction of the cost?
Outdoor gear websites are as numerous and diverse as national parks and forests. Before choosing an outdoor gear store, it’s helpful to think about what it is you need to buy. Looking for new hiking boots? Missing some important camping gear? Planning a specific activity, like fishing or kayaking? Your answers will inform which outdoor goods retailer is best for you.
We compiled this list of the best online outdoor stores to help narrow down your options. We deliberately chose outdoor websites that serve different purposes, e.g. best for outdoor clothing and footwear, best for discount camping gear, and best for used outdoor goods. We hope you find this guide beneficial and wish you all the best with your next outdoor adventure!
Recreational Equipment, Inc, or REI for short, is a pioneer in outdoor goods and equipment. Founded in Seattle in 1938, it now has 162 retail stores in 40 states and a website that ships all over the U.S. and internationally. REI has all the camping and hiking gear you could want, and also sells equipment for cycling, climbing, paddling, running, snow sports, travel, and yoga.
As a co-operative, REI is owned by its active members, defined as anyone who has paid a $20 lifetime membership fee and purchased $10 or more of merchandise in the previous calendar year. Membership privileges include a 10% cashback dividend, exclusive offers, access to in-store garage sales, and special pricing for outdoor adventures and events.
Backcountry is a specialty online retailer that sells every type of outdoor clothing and gear you could possibly need. Founded in Utah in 1996, it sells products from popular brands like North Face and Patagonia alongside its own line of affordable outdoor gear. In fact, it probably has the largest selection of outdoor products on the internet.
Over the years, Backcountry has built up a large and loyal following among outdoor adventurers. It offers regular promotions through the year, with discounts of up to 50% on gear and apparel. If you’re having trouble picking out the right product, then you can chat online at any time with one of Backcountry’s expert ‘gearheads’.
Moosejaw is another major online outdoor goods website, which is no surprise when you consider it’s owned by Walmart. It has 12 physical outlets outdoor gear stores (CO, IL, KS, MI, MO), but it’s online where Moosejaw really excels with a massive selection of products and incredible discounts.
Discounts are a feature of most outdoor websites, but Moosejaw takes it to another level. With its Moosejaw Rewards program, you earn 10% back in ‘MJ$’ (or 2.5% on discounted items) as soon as your order ships. And the best part is it doesn’t cost anything to become a member. Just opt-in to Moosejaw Rewards for free during checkout.
CampSaver by name, camp saver by nature. Most outdoor gear websites are good when it comes to discounts, but few are so singularly devoted to cheap camping gear. In fact, opening the CampSaver website actually feels like walking into a clearance outlet; there are items all over the place, most of them at discount.
When opening the CampSaver home page, look for the ‘Outlet’ and ‘Shed’ tabs at the top of the page. Outlet has thousands of products in last year’s outdoor clothing and equipment, all at a huge discount. Shed is a page for open-box, vendor samples, and demo products. These products are as good as new and are offered at a significant discount.
Sierra, formerly Sierra Trad