Over the years I have noticed a growing elitism in the online backpacking community in regards to Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI). These self-appointed experts disdain, poo-poo, and generally criticize REI for all kinds of faults, ethics, and lost purity. Many say the only things at REI of value are gas canisters for stoves, and only when they are on sale. They shout out that REI is only for the poor load carrying burdens of beast – the “traditional” backpacker.
They are wrong.