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My review of Portland, Oregon Gear Stores.
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Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife

Locale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
Next Adventure! on 09/21/2013 16:30:58 MDT Print View

You left out Next Adventure! They are a ULA pack retailer.

Many of us are waiting for that Montbell store!

Six Moon Designs is located in Beaverton (west side of Portland) and now has a storefront presence, so you can go directly there. It's probably a good idea to call first, though.

There's a place in Troutdale that I still haven't visited called "Only the Lightest Backpacking Equipment"--it appears to be a home operation rather than a retail store.
http://www.hikelight.com
I really should call for an appointment and go see what they have. Lots of interesting stuff on their website.

There's also BackcountryGear.com down in Eugene. They have a store down there and do a lot of internet business. Right now they're having a rare sale on discontinued versions of several Western Mountaineering bags. I've bought quite a bit of gear from them in the past.

Edited by hikinggranny on 09/21/2013 16:53:51 MDT.

Steven Paris
(saparisor) - M

Locale: Pacific Northwest
My review of Portland, Oregon Gear Stores on 09/21/2013 18:05:28 MDT Print View

We also have a fairly new GoLite store in Bridgeport village.

Nick H
(galway) - MLife
Montbell Store? on 09/23/2013 08:53:29 MDT Print View

Portland is getting a Montbell store? That is pretty awesome. This summer I went to the one in Boulder and it was pretty amazing. I never expected it to be so big. They had everything they sell in all sizes and a large closeout section plus shoes and other equipment from other manufacturers.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Montbell Store? on 09/23/2013 09:08:07 MDT Print View

Sounds dangerous ;). I'm glad it will be a 3 hour drive!

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife

Locale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
My review of Portland, Oregon Gear Stores on 09/23/2013 12:50:04 MDT Print View

Since Portland and Seattle are only three hours apart, I thought I'd cross reference the two threads. Here's the thread on Seattle stores:

http://www.backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin/backpackinglight/forums/thread_display.html?forum_thread_id=82178&skip_to_post=699887#699887

Derek Musashe
(dmusashe) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Staff with applicable experience on 09/23/2013 15:20:34 MDT Print View

I've been to many of the stores that the OP mentioned above.

Just to add a my two cents...

I was impressed with the staff at Next Adventure, and even more so at The Mountain Shop. At the latter, I chatted with one of the staff members and found out that he had actually used some of the gear I was looking at on his 2012 PCT thru-hike.

It was a breath of fresh air to be able to get real world insights from a staff member who had actually pushed gear to its limits and had insightful gear-related critiques and complements to share in return.

I can't tell you how many times I've gone to REI and been "helped" by an employee who knew much, much less about the product at hand than I did. I try and avoid the attention of the army of green-vested REI goons at all costs. To be fair, I have met some really knowledgeable people in REI, but they seem to be few and far between. Also, I don't think that BPL forum members are very representative of the average REI customer, and in following, I don't think a big chain like REI is really in business to cater to people like us, so my experiences in there aren't exactly surprising. Ok, I'll stop ranting now.

Also, as mentioned above, Next Adventure carries ULA packs, and The Mountain Shop carries Six Moon Designs products (among other things), so these smaller outdoor shops are a great place to buy things that you will never find at the larger outdoor gear chains like REI.

Edited by dmusashe on 09/23/2013 15:22:36 MDT.