Six Small Businesses Making the Outdoors Better Than Ever This Summer

Six Small Businesses Making the Outdoors Better Than Ever This Summer

We’ve all done it – thought of going kayaking, or for a hike, or doing some mountain biking. But then we balked. We don’t have kayaks, or tents, or mountain bikes. The thought of the expense and energy to acquire these things, plus other necessary gear, killed the impulse to get outside – so we continued to sit inside and wish there was a better way.

There are several new businesses entering the scene this year trying to do just that – to inspire people to tackle the outdoors by removing some of these barriers by making a trip as painless as possible. So dust off that backpack and pull on your boots – because you’re about to go have some fun.

The Outdoor Exchange


The Outdoor Exchange allows customers to subscribe to an annual service to rent outdoors gear. Mind-blowing, right? Whether you want a kayak for one trip or want to go on bi-weekly river tours, it’s up to you. Subscription prices range from $100/single person, $175/couple, and $250/family – kid’s gear is available as well. Based in NJ, larger items are delivered/picked up locally and smaller items ship across the US. Check out their current INDIEGOGO campaign here: --- @usetheox ---

Great Outdoors Food


Great Outdoors Food allows customers to build meals for one or several days of hiking/camping/rafting that they will actually enjoy. Choose from over 200 products (including Starbucks, Kind, Clif, Backpacker’s Pantry, Kraft, and more) and build a meal that tracks the price, weight, and nutrition facts of each item! The meals are packed individually and mailed within three days of placing an order. --- @grtoutdoorsfood ---

Outdoor Adventure Training


Adam takes a personal interest in helping the inexperienced get ready for an outdoor adventure. A lifelong wilderness enthusiast, he leads classes in his native Signal Mountain, TN that cover the skills and safety needed for hiking, camping, fishing, navigation, white-water rafting, and more. His classes are family-friendly and extremely affordable – just get yourself to Tennessee and learn from the master! --- @thatoutdoorguy ---

Pat’s Backcountry Beverages


Pat’s Backcountry Beverages aim to “Bring refreshment anywhere!” by offering lines of dry, concentrated beer and sodas that can be reconstituted with water in their portable mixer for the ultimate treat on the trail. Since the hiker’s most hated nemesis is extra weight, these handy packets allow even the most rustic outdoorsman a refreshing taste of civilization. --- @patsbcb

Enlightened Equipment


Sleeping bag, schmeeping bag. Try a handmade, lightweight sleeping quilt from EnLIGHTened Equipment and you’ll never go back. Customize your custom quilt by choosing duck or goose down; short, regular, or long lengths; slim, regular, wide, or extra-wide widths; your desired internal temperature; and dozens of interior and exterior color combinations. As their warranty guarantees: “It is simple, you will be happy.” --- @enlightenedeq ---

Friendly Foot


Don’t even act like you’ve never noticed a slightly-less-than-wonderful odor coming from those hiking boots after a long weekend outdoors. Grab a bottle of Friendly Foot to eliminate that issue FOREVER. This special powder was developed by a long-time climbing instructor and guide who purposefully included only natural ingredients in the blend to create a product that provides antimicrobial, antifungal, antiviral and antiseptic properties – which means your shoes will never smell again! --- @friendlyfoot ---