In search of just the right piece of gear? I bet you are. Many of us are involved in an ongoing hunt to replace a favorite item that was either destroyed or lost during hard play. Some of these things seem irreplaceable, after all. When the search commences, it is often met with frustration: there are a lot of big-box sporting goods stores out there that carry the same mass produced items. Not only do the stores have inventory in common, the goods are often not tough enough for the long haul.
Life would be so much easier if the gear hungry lot of us could simply refer to one source. No wandering around in a fluorescent lit cavern with shelves and shelves of generic. Instead, a place that would say to all of us: “Here is what you want! Gear made by interesting, smart people that are doing thoughtful work for all of us! And guess what? This stuff is built to last, baby! Take a look!”
I know of such a place. It’s called Garage Grown Gear.
Garage Grown Gear sells boats that roll up to the size of Nalgene water bottle, ultralight backpacks made from sailcloth in Maine, and stylish winter hats designed by a then-high school student. Want healthy and delicious dehydrated meals in the backcountry? Garage Grown Gear discovered a company finally making them. Always dreamed of the perfect climbing pants? So did a small Montana brand, and they’re available in the store. Many of the brands Garage Grown Gear features are made domestically and take steps to minimize environmental impacts. All are founded by people who saw a need and created a product to meet it.
The brilliant lady behind all this is Teton Valley’s own Amy Hatch, the founder of Jackson Hole Packraft, a business that was literally run out of her garage. Hatch explains her mission, “We scout for today’s innovators and tomorrow’s icons. It’s our passion to connect you to these brands.” Music to your ears, right? She further elaborates, “The companies featured in our store are hand-selected. It’s a curated collection.” She is singing my tune.
As the holidays approach with ever quickening speed, let Garage Grown Gear be your guide. Not really a gear geek? Someone in your life is a card carrying member of the pack, I assure you. When the package for your beloved arrives upon your doorstep, and you take it out of the box with intent to wrap and ribbon up, and you suddenly consider keeping it for yourself – don’t feel any guilt. Just go back to your outdoor gear personal shopper at GGG, and get to clicking.