Many consumers believe that military surplus stores have an inventory geared only towards those who are entering the army or navy. Unfortunately, these misguided thoughts prevent these people from experiencing some of the best shopping in the country. Military surplus stores sell virtually every item that one might need while experiencing life in the outdoors. Whether you’re planning a month long trek through the wilderness or a weekend camping trip with the family, a visit to a military surplus store will surely allow you to find everything you’ll need for your trip.
Imagine, if you will, a group of hikers preparing to summit a 4000 foot peak deep in the Allegheny Mountains. Throughout this three day trek, the group will be out of contact with all civilization and left to fend for themselves. They begin their preparations by filling their packs with clothing (shirts, pants, socks, and thermal-wear), small pots and pans, and a number of different dried foods. They unwrap their tents to ensure that all the necessary parts are intact, and reroll them before strapping them to their packs. On the morning of day one, the hikers strap on their hiking boots, secure the packs to their back, and move out. They repeatedly apply bug spray to prevent insect bites, and when the sun tucks beneath the horizon, each hiker turns on his or her headlamp to provide light. Come dinner time, they collect steam water in a pot and mix in a filtration tablet in order to disinfect the water. After they eat, they’ll roll out their sleeping bags and mats in the tent and hit the sack to get rest for another big day tomorrow.
Virtually every item that the hikers used throughout the day is available at a military surplus store – the pots, tents, clothing, headlamps, bug spray, food, and even the water tablets. The possibilities truly are endless when shopping in one of these outdoor superstores, so make sure to stop in the next time you see one; you’ll be surprised to find much more than camouflage gear.