By Barry Barbe

“When I’m outdoors I have the ability to simply tune everything else out. It’s my euphoria.” – Amanda Lane, The Hike Shack

If there is one constant in the customers at The Hike Shack, it’s not only their love of the outdoors, but a relaxed demeanor that comes from immersing themselves in nature — whether it’s hiking, biking or bouldering — each experience is different, exhilarating and unique.

For close to two decades, The Hike Shack has been a downtown Prescott destination for hikers and adventurers looking for not only the right gear, but advice and inspiration on the vast opportunities that exist within the Prescott area.

“My first question when interviewing an employee is ‘Name your three favorite trails,’” said Amanda Lane, partner and purchasing agent for The Hike Shack. “If they can’t do that, we already know it’s not a good fit.” “We’re looking for folks that can relate to, and share their experiences with our customers.”

Raigan York-Fundalewicz adds: “That comes with having grown up in Prescott and spent our youth and adult lives living the experiences that our customers are looking for. We’re able to tell folks the best trails for the day or season as well as offer a unique perspective on how to create the best memories.”

Along with Kam York, the three women have owned the business for 13 years. While that may be surprising, their success is not.

Both Raigan and Amanda grew up in Prescott and have a vast knowledge of the surrounding trails, lakes and climbing opportunities that only comes from first-hand encounters.

“My first retail experience was with Popular Outdoors in 1994,” Amanda explains. It was later when Dave Wheeler opened Manzanita Outdoors in the Frontier Village, then moving to in the Depot Marketplace that Amanda began in grow her knowledge of the difference in the gear and accessories that can make any adventure more enjoyable.

“It can sometimes be something as simple as the type of socks someone is wearing, or even how they are tying their boots that can turn what could have been a great time outdoors into a miserable and frustrating memory.” Amanda said.

These are the subtle differences and advice that customers of online shopping, etc., don’t get.

How the three acquired The Hike Shack is not unusual to Prescott.

“My brother, Toby, and I were downtown and went into The Hike Shack, which at the time was a 900-square-foot storefront on South Montezuma, and we approached Amanda about opening a store with us. Her response was not only yes, but ‘Let’s buy this one.’”

There were similar shops in town at the time, but only The Hike Shack has stood the test of time and the impact of big box stores and online services.

The difference and sustainability of The Hike Shack is the store experience. The esthetic is warm and personable, and, despite the amount of inventory, is not intimidating.

Located at 104 N. Montezuma St., the store offers a wide selection of gear for area activities including hard-to-find lines of shoes, boots, backpacking, climbing gear and apparel. Along with all the items comes first-hand information from the staff on what product is the best for you.

“I live outdoors and so I get to sell toys, the toys I use. I get to see the product first, I get to use it, and offer first-hand advice on how best to use it, or why it’s not appropriate, or the best piece of equipment for you,” Amanda explains.

When it comes to operations, Amanda and Raigan split responsibility in areas that best fit their personalities and benefit the business.

Amanda handles the front of house, while Raigan oversees the books. “We’ve found over the years how to work together the best, we know each other’s hot buttons, and when we each need to be left alone,” Raigan said.

As to their success, the two credit their staff who themselves bring their stories to share with locals and travelers alike who are looking to create their own memories as they immerse themselves outdoors.

“We’re from Prescott, we’re part of Prescott, and we know Prescott. We know the seasons, we know the community, we know the guys that own the bike shops. Our staff carries that same knowledge.

“They’re educated and trained not only on our products, but also on the surrounding terrain and opportunities to provide the best level of service which in turn makes your outdoor experience the best possible. That’s what makes us different, that’s what sets us apart.”

The Hike Shack, 104 N. Montezuma St., in downtown Prescott, is open weekdays at 9 a.m., and Sundays at 10.

Barry Barbe owns the El Gato Azul and Torme restaurants in Prescott, and is the energy and insight behind the Prescott Palette. His radio show, the Prescott Palette, is on KQNA 1130 AM, Saturdays at noon. Email:

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