On Friday afternoon, all I could think of was escaping work to climb on the limestone walls of Rifle, Colorado, for the first weekend of fall. I’d decided that morning to leave after work. When 5 p.m. rolled around, I realized I did not have a tent or even a sleeping bag for the trip. I was still determined to go. The back of a Jeep Wrangler could make a good bed, right? That first night the temperature dropped below 30 degrees, and I slept for four hours with a cotton flannel as my only blanket. I did not have my best weekend of climbing. I wished that I’d had a better resource to get gear for my weekend trip. Adventure junkies and weekend warriors like myself have waited a long time for a simple way to rent gear for planned and last minute trips. On June 18, 2019, the American Alpine Club (AAC) partnered with GEARO, an automated gear rental platform to help out climbers with gear rental.
[Disclosure: GEARO is part of a business accelerator program by Active Interest Media, Climbing's parent company.]
New to the industry, launching their latest version in April 2019, GEARO connects adventure seekers with local shops for gear rentals. For example, if you need climbing shoes, simply search the term on the website and GEARO will provide you with a few different styles from local retailers like Tahoe Mountain Sports and Backcountry Experience. GEARO also provides a marketing opportunity for local retailers, by directing outdoor lovers to their businesses. They do this by restricting their array of available partners to mom and pop shops who benefit the most from the exposure. As written on their website, GEARO is “a mutually beneficial community of retailers and adventure seekers.”
Renting through GEARO requires a few simple steps. First, register an account as either a retailer or a customer. The online dashboard then offers order and inventory management, real-time booking calendars, and detailed reporting, allowing users to rent everything from a sprinter van to a camping chair at a daily rate. They also offer an assortment of climbing gear, including crashpads, climbing webbing, crampons, and more.
With the AAC, GEARO is offering members a discount ranging from 10% to 15% on their partnered retailers. Members will have a list of all of the shops partnered with GEARO and can use one discount code. GEARO founder Justine Barone said, “Our mission statements are oriented well. The one thing we want to do is make outdoor gear more accessible and they want to make the outdoors more accessible.”
Thankfully, my days of shivering in the back of a car are numbered. I can rent a tent and sleeping bag at a discount through AAC’s partnership with GEARO.