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Review Text

10/04/2011 02:46PM
So I was thinking of going to REI tonight after work. Not sure which REI I prefer though. I like all the REI stores in the cities. Like REI Maple Grove, REI Roseville and REI Bloomington. I would like to get some REI branded items but I am not sure what the best REI branded items are. REI tents, REI sleeping bags, REI cooking stuff, REI clothes or maybe some REI optics. What is your fav REI equipment? Which is your favorite REI store? I wish there was an REI on the way to the B'dub! That would be great! Stop at REI in Duluth or maybe REI Ely to get those last minute items. What a blast REI is! I love REI! Almost as much as I like that big outdoor store in Rogers. So what ARE your favorite REI items and or REI store? Anyone ever rented REI gear at REI?
How about you out of minnesota peeps? What is your favorite REI store, favorite REI branded equipment and why?
Anyone have the mobile REI app for their phone? I have that REI app. Works pretty good.
Have a great day!
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10/04/2011 03:13PM
Fitgers, I don't have any specific recommendations for you, but I love REI, too!

FYI, I just received a note in the mail from them that a 20% off one item sale is starting this Friday--so you may want to hold off on your purchase until then.

In addition, I have a couple of REI coupons from the recent St. Paul Classic and Minneapolis Bike Tour rides: They're good for 20% off one full price REI or Novara item. They expire in about a month and I don't think I'll need them before then--I need a few things but they're not REI/Novara brand items...

If you (or anyone else) wants a coupon code, I can email it to you and you can use it toward an online purchase. Please make sure you're really going to use it if you ask for it!

Have fun,
10/04/2011 03:36PM
REI is a nice option for buying gear, but hardly the end-all of outdoor gear stores. They do have selection, they willingly demonstrate different gear items and they offer the opportunity to try on different gear items, especially sleeping bags and pads, hiking boots, backpacks, etc.

I've always wondered why other stores, especially locally owned outdoor gear stores looking for a niche, don't offer more of that. Maybe they're out there, but I know there's not one like that here in Green Bay.
10/04/2011 04:20PM
A joke between colleagues at work is that REI is heaven on earth for me... Not too terribly far fetched.

The store I frequent the most is the Schaumburg, IL location because of its close proximity to work. However, my favorite area store has to be the one in Northbrook, IL. It's easily double the size of Schaumburg and is better stocked.
I haven't needed to get too in depth with any of the floor people yet, but the various times I've had a question they've always come off as well informed and helpful.

I know I can save money buying much of the same stuff online or elsewhere, but for me the lifetime guarantee and single point of contact for returns/exchanges is what makes up the difference.

I would have bought my tent from there if they stocked it. Next family tent is almost certainly coming from REI - I've lusted over a Kingdom for a while now.

Now, if they carried Souris River that would be a very dangerous combination for me.... 10% back plus the 5% bonus of the REI card. Oh man /shivers
10/04/2011 04:27PM
I've purchased quite a bit of gear form them. I have a REI Half-Dome 4 tent which is superb. The other gear I purchased is the usual camping stuff from Marmot, Katadyn, GSR, Exped, etc. I like them because if there is a problem it's no questions asked when you bring it back. Plus they sell quality gear. If you look around and keep an eye out for sales you can do pretty well there...
10/04/2011 04:40PM
I agree on the sale prices, hardly ever pay full price there AND yes I have their VISA and got back a whopping check this year - whee!

I like their REI clothing for kids - rain suits and fleece have been a staple for over a decade now and I've not been disappointed in a single item.

Also own an REI tent (maybe more than one) and no disappointment there either.

Try on footwear there too, and scored several times on clearance Keens and Chacos in my size.

Bloomington is my store, and it was my store before it was that big too - the Clover Leaf shopping center location was actually closer to me way back when it was across from Burger Brothers.

Agree on their ease of returns and like that salespeople have often USED the things they are selling!
10/04/2011 05:03PM
I am a frequent REI customer. I like the products they carry, including their own brand of equipment. I have an REI tent, backpacks and lots of clothing. They are one of the few outdoor stores that carries stuff for kids, so that's a big plus for them in my book.

I like their staff and their return policies are excellent.

My favorite local store is the Bloomington store. It's nice but not as nice as the Denver REI Superstore across the Platte River from Downtown. That is the cat's meow.

I agree with others who have said it's not the end all though. I also purchase quite a bit of gear from Midwest Mountaineering, Cabelas, Gander Mountain and Fleet Farm to furnish the gear outlet store I call my basement. And let's not forget the online options either, like Campmor and Backcountry.
10/04/2011 05:11PM
i get that jeff. lol :)
10/04/2011 08:21PM
As I'm in Kansas City, the closest REI for me is in St. Louis. I do stop in when passing through and throw a few bucks their way. However, most of the items I have purchased from them have been on-line. I also have the REI Visa and will be more than ready to spend my refund check with them at years end.

I am blessed to have a few great outdoors stores in my area for those must have now moments. Specifically, Dynamic Earth, Backwoods, Sunflower, KC Paddlers and Alpine Shop in Columbia. These stores coupled with a some great on-line retailers are pretty much all I need. Ok, maybe I really do need a NRS store close by as well.
10/04/2011 08:24PM
so...wait, do you like REI?
10/04/2011 08:42PM
I would consider backing off on the coffee fitgers.....
10/04/2011 09:39PM
I have several pairs of REI brand pants that I love, both their adventure pants and their short-pants have held up very well, are quick drying, and thanks to the return policy, if I rip them in ten years, I can return them.

I also have the REI Flash 18, 50 and 65 with no complaints so far, and my wife likes their house brand sleeping bag. For the price, I don't think their tents can be beat.

The store in Denver is my favorite by a long stretch.
10/04/2011 10:44PM
quote kanoes: "i get that jeff. lol :)"
Thanks Jan. I was hoping someone would. Maybe nobody else was paying attention? I do like REI though!

Good comments though above.
10/05/2011 06:39AM
fitgers1 wrote REI.............28 times

relax man!
10/05/2011 04:44PM
My usual store is Roseville, although I sometimes have to go to Bloomington to find something in stock. As far as actual REI-branded items, I have a bunch of pants and shirts (the "Sahara" ones), a packable day pack, and a set of titanium cookware. My parents both have REI raincoats. Of course I also have a ton of otherwise-branded stuff from there, including Marmot sleeping bags, two tents (Big Agnes and Walrus), stoves (MSR), boots, etc. Yeah, they've gotten rather a lot of business from myself and my family over the years.
10/06/2011 12:29AM
quote fitgers1: "quote kanoes: "i get that jeff. lol :)"
Thanks Jan. I was hoping someone would. Maybe nobody else was paying attention? I do like REI though!

Good comments though above."

I got it but was ignoring you because I LOVE REI!!!
10/06/2011 04:21PM
quote fitgers1: "quote kanoes: "i get that jeff. lol :)"
Thanks Jan. I was hoping someone would. Maybe nobody else was paying attention? I do like REI though!

Good comments though above."

I thought he was referring to my comment regarding "the gear outlet store I call my basement".

Just goes to show how egocentric we/I am/are.
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