Top 10 Outdoor Websites You Don’t Know Yet

Posted: October 12, 2010 in Business, Media
Tags: , ,

Here at Venture Sports we are in the business of selling outdoor gear. However we also like to stay on top of the news. I have over 100 websites in my RSS reader and I scan through a ton of headlines every day. Of course I have the usual suspects, like SNEWS, Outdoor Business, Backpacker, and Outside but there is a new generation of bloggers emerging online who are very serious about generating great content. Most of them have long backgrounds in the outdoor industry – either on the business side or with the media – and they all have a ton of talent. There are dozens of new websites worth checking out and there are hundreds that you should probably skip right over. Here is the short list of the best:

1. The Adventure Life: Founded and edited by Steve Casimiro, The Adventure Life is the first site I visit every morning as I ramp up for the day with a cup of coffee. The content is always fresh, compelling, sometimes quirky, and completely authentic. Steve has lived a very adventurous life – most recently as the gear editor for National Geographic Adventure – and it clearly shows in his most recent work.

2. Verde PR’s blog: Mike Geraci and Kristin Carpenter-Ogden teamed up last year combining two of the most successful PR talents in the industry. While their blog is certainly used as a platform to promote their clients, there are tons of useful marketing and PR tips, tactics and case studies that make it a great read every week.

3. Splitter Choss: If you are a climber (or want to be a climber), Splitter Choss is for you. While many of the traditional print climbing magazines struggled to find the right formula for online publishing Splitter Choss nailed it with gear reviews, crag reports, route descriptions and some humorous, timely editorializing.

4. Get Outdoors GoBlog: The GoBlog is easily the most irreverent blog in the outdoor industry. If something happens – really it could be anything – these folks have an opinion about it and it usually makes me laugh out loud – when it doesn’t I’m usually shaking my head in wonder at how they can get away with actually printing some of these things.

5. Wicked Outdoorsy: Another blog from an outdoor industry PR firm – Drew Simmons from Pale Morning Media is the talent behind this site. Drew has a lifetime’s worth of experience as a journalist – both print and broadcast. Today he lives and works in the Mad River Valley in Vermont and much of his writing revolves around rural living in a sustainable manner – or as he says in his site’s tag line – Living the Greeneck Way.

6. Canoelover’s Blog: Darren Bush owns and operates one of the most successful and iconic paddle shops in the country – Rutabaga in Madison, Wisconsin. His blog is dedicated to the art of canoeing, nature, family and life with a few musings about odonates (dragonflies). Several articles on Darren’s have been a great reality check for me – making me realize what is really important and showing me one way to be successful in life, not just at work.

7. Pemba Serves: Brad Werntz is the owner and operator of one of the most progressive sales agencies in the country – Pemba Serves, also based in Madison. Pemba embraced social media wholeheartedly and integrated into their business operations. Brad and the other reps at Pemba also created the CarFreeRep concept as an experiment where the entire agency went car free for an entire month. This meant using bus, train and bicycle to make appointments all across the Midwest. Their website is a well-balanced mix of business news, sales rep tips and tactics, product, and case studies.

8. Rock Climber Girl: As the name clearly states, this site is for women who climb rocks. However, even if you don’t climb and/or are not female, this site has a lot to offer. Sara Lingafelter is a sales rep with Waypoint Outdoor, a sales agency in the Pacific Northwest. Her insights into life and climbing are compelling to say the least and she offers a great “boots on the ground” view of the industry, its people, its successes and its flaws.

9. Bike 2.0: Rick Vosper is a bike industry veteran who has seen just about everything and he is not afraid to tell the truth and the industry. His blog is chronicling the on-going transformation of the bike industry into something new. There is a huge transition happening right now in the bike industry, and Rick is as close to it as anyone in the country.

10. Indigitous: Larry Pluimer has been involved with online retail in the outdoor industry on nearly every level and he understands the ins and outs of competing on the digital playing field better than anyone. He knows the technology and he knows how to integrate it into your business.

So, that’s my short list – if you have any more to add – let us know!

UPDATE: Another Outdoor PR website worth checking out is Alycia Cavadi’s blog – she’s the owner of Momentum Media – she does a great job profiling key journalists in the industry with a ton of tips and tactics on how to pitch a story properly. Great read all around!

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Comments
  1. I have it on Good Authority that those guys at Pemba Serves are just a bunch of hacks.

  2. thanks for the shout out Kris!

  3. we’ve just launched a new english blog at Mountain Equipment Co-op up here in Canada http://blog.mec.ca – and if you read french our team has been blogging about outdoor living for a good year now.

  4. I’ve been following The Adventure Life and Wicked Outdoorsy for a while and love them.

    I just recently launched my own adventure site;

    http://www.somegoodadventure.com/ A lot of Canadian content but also adventure news from the US and around the world.

  5. Josh Turner says:

    This is great! A handful of sites I haven’t checked out yet. It looks like all of the sites mentioned here are run by industry “insiders.” Which is awesome, but there’s a whole other ocean of sites that don’t fit that description. For some other great sites by regular ole enthusiasts, check out:

    HikingLady.com
    CampingBlogger.net
    OurHikingBlog.com.au
    DustyCamel.org
    SectionHiker.com
    CampingGearTV.com (my site)
    Calipidder.com

    There are so many, but these are a few I like. I also really enjoy TheGearCaster.com, and I think Amy would make the industry insider cut.

    Great post!

    Josh

  6. David Norris says:

    Check out woosamonsa.com a good place to find new locations for outdoor activities. Some areas don’t have a lot of markers.

  7. Evan says:

    Hi everyone Please check out sportsmanoutpost.com for discount outdoor gear, just started up

  8. ruthgwilt says:

    There’s a great UK based site – http://www.ultimate-activitycompany.co.uk. Loads of great info and they do cheap canoe hire on the river wye, Hereford.

  9. Tim Gerard says:

    By a very large margin http://www.theactivetimes.com is the best. It’s got everything, and it’s actually honest/insightful. One of the few outdoors sites I can stay on for hours.

  10. Have a look at what we’re doing over here in Europe
    http://outdoorbuzz.net

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