Lack of Snow Causing Customers to Buy Other Outdoor Gear - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Lack of Snow Causing Customers to Buy Other Outdoor Gear

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The store's winter gear is all on clearance for customers. The store's winter gear is all on clearance for customers.
TRI-CITIES, WA- The lack of snow has affected local ski resorts, as well as stores that specialize in selling winter gear, but customers are buying other outdoor gear.


While the East Coast has been pummeled with winter weather this year, Washington has had some relatively mild conditions. 


REI in Kennewick said this warm winter has actually slowed winter gear from moving off the shelves, but it is not hurting them.  Instead, customers looked at other outdoor gear.

Clearance signs were all over the winter clothing and sporting section at REI in Kennewick.  With this unusually warm winter there has been quite the slow down for winter sales, but it was not all bad for businesses.

The REI store manager David Berkowitz said the warm weather has moved people to buy other items and he said business has boomed.

They even moved some winter items out of state.

"We just got a request to send a bunch of them to Colorado where they are selling very quickly," said Berkowitz.

A lot of people bought gear for next season.

"Last year this time of year we barely had any winter gear left.  We do have some left this year and probably maybe 10% more sales this year than in the previous year," said Berkowitz.

Franklin County said so far it has been good for them.  They have only used 6% of their $250,000 snow and ice removal budget this year. 

"We're not through the year either.  We've still got all next November, December, and October.  We've seen snow at that time, so a lot matters on what it brings in the future," said Rick Miller, Franklin County Commissioner.

Franklin County has not had to use many resources this year, saving both them and the taxpayers' money.

"There's less pot holes, less heaving in the roads, which means more savings," said Miller.

REI said despite the warm winter, people would still do what they love.

"I think outdoors people will find a way to get outside.  They want to enjoy the great outdoors and good weather is a good thing," said Berkowitz.

Franklin County said any left over money from their snow and ice removal budget will go back to the county for next year's budget.

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