Robinson's Outdoor Store
The Original Victoria hiking store
Robinson's has been in Victoria for an astonishing 80 years and maintains, not only a tremendous array of hiking gear, but also a wonderful community of local hiking events.
For example, in 2012 it hosted several events including a screening of 40 Days at Base Camp, film documentary about Mount Everest by a local BC film maker. And a West Coast Trail presentation by the guys that wrote Blisters and Bliss, a guide book to the West Coast Trail.
Their commitment to bringing events like this to Victoria makes the store come alive with community spirit and gives the place a pulse that you just don't find in the retail world anymore. They also manage quite an impressive selection of sale items and an excellent website that lists them.
Robinson's is located right downtown on Broad Street (1307 Broad St, between Yates and Johnson), with convenient on street (pay) parking out front. Their hours are 9:30-6pm Monday-Saturday and 11-5pm Sunday. Check out their excellent website here...
Mountain Equipment Co-op Victoria (MEC)
A recent addition to Victoria, this Canadian hiking store has a huge selection
Don't let the Co-op title scare you. Though you do need a membership which cost's $5 (lifetime membership) to buy anything. The stores are amazing. Huge and well stocked. The stores, which are scattered around Western Canada, are directed by staff and members(customers). So, if a product is good it is stocked. If something is crappy, it will not be. On their amazing website you will find almost every one of their thousands of products with detailed reviews on quality, value, etc. If you can't make it to their store, you can order online with free shipping (orders over $50).
Mountain Equipment Co-op is conveniently located downtown at 1450 Government Street with (pay) parking available on the street close by. They are open Mon-Wed 10-7pm, Thur-Fri 10=9pm, Sat 906pm, Sun 11-5pm. Check out their excellent website here.