Pawn Shop Treasures

The Winter Enthusiast’s Guide to Pawn Shop Treasures

Winter is just around the corner, and for many, it’s the season of thrilling snow sports and cozy winter wear. But gearing up for winter doesn’t have to break the bank. Pawn shops can be a goldmine for winter enthusiasts, offering a range of name-brand items at a fraction of the retail price. This guide will walk you through the essentials to look for and how to ensure you’re getting the best deal.

1. The Allure of Name Brand Snowboards:

Regarding snowboarding, the brand can significantly affect performance and durability. Pawn shops often carry brands like Burton, Lib Tech, and Ride. When inspecting a snowboard:

Check the Base: Look for any deep scratches or gouges. While minor scratches are normal, deeper cuts can affect performance.

Examine the Edges: Ensure they are sharp and free of rust.

Flex Test: Gently flex the board to ensure it doesn’t show signs of snapping.

2. Skis and Poles:

Top brands like Rossignol, Atomic, and Salomon are often found in pawn shops. When checking skis:

Look for Damage: Check the ski’s top, bottom, and edges for any significant damage.

Bindings: Ensure they are securely attached and adjust smoothly.

For poles, ensure they are straight, have no cracks, and have intact grips and straps.

3. Winter Wear:

Brands like North Face, Patagonia, and Columbia are known for their quality winter wear. When shopping:

Inspect for Wear and Tear: Check for rips, tears, or excessive wear.

Test Zippers: Ensure they move smoothly and don’t catch.

Check the Lining: The inner lining should be intact and free from damage.

4. Winter Footwear:

Whether you’re looking for snowboarding boots or just something to keep your feet warm, brands like Sorel, UGG, and Burton are top choices. Always:

Check the Sole: Ensure it’s firmly attached and shows no sign of significant wear.

Inspect the Interior: The inside should be dry and free from mold or unpleasant odors.

5. Winter Accessories:

Remember the smaller items that complete your winter experience, from Oakley goggles to Under Armor gloves. Always:

Check for Damage: Whether gloves, goggles, or hats, ensure they are free from significant wear and tear.

Try Them On: Try on items to ensure a good fit.

Tips for Pawn Shop Shopping:

Do Your Research: Before heading to the pawn shop, research the items you’re interested in. Knowing the retail price can help you negotiate.

Ask Questions: Don’t hesitate to ask the shop owner about the item’s history or any warranties.

Negotiate: Pawn shops prices can often be negotiated. Feel free to make a reasonable offer.

Check for Authenticity: Especially with name brands, ensure the item is genuine and not a knock-off.

6. Winter Sports Gadgets and Tech:

In today’s digital age, technology has seamlessly integrated with our winter adventures. Pawn shops can be a surprising source for winter sports tech, from GoPro cameras to capture your downhill escapades to Garmin GPS devices for those backcountry treks. Brands like Suunto also offer altimeter watches, perfect for mountaineers. When considering tech:

Test Before Buying: Always ensure the gadget powers on and functions correctly.

Check for Compatibility: If you’re buying something like a camera, ensure it’s compatible with your other devices or gear.

Battery Life: Check how long the battery lasts for gadgets with rechargeable batteries. Some older tech might have diminished battery life.

Accessories Included: Often, tech gadgets come with essential accessories. Ensure items like chargers, mounts, or protective cases are included in the purchase or negotiate accordingly.


Pawn shops can be a treasure trove for winter enthusiasts. With a keen eye and knowledge, you can score name-brand gear without the hefty price tag. With this guide, you’ll be all set to enjoy the season to the fullest, whether you’re hitting the slopes or braving the winter chill.