Footwear

Hiking | Trail Running | Road Running | Boating | Casual

Our footwear department is one of the largest that you'll find; we have everything from expedition boots to flip flops. Hiking, trail running, and road running shoes are all lined up and ready for you to try on. We also have a comprehensive selection of casual shoes from your favorite outdoor and surf brands. Come have a chat with us, we'd love to fill you in on what's new with shoes!

 

Local Hiking Spots

08/03/2016


We are lucky to live in a part of the country where beautiful hiking trails abound, and even luckier to have endless options right in our own little corner of Connecticut. There are many hiking trails that cater to those of you who want to spend a full day out in the woods, conquering new terrain and never passing the same rock twice. On the contrary, if you are a new hiker or you want to introduce the activity to your young children, there is no shortage of local trails that will fit your needs. We've put together a guide to some of our favorite nearby hiking spots based on the ease of the hike and size of the park. In addition, we compiled a list of must-have items for each one so you can stay safe and comfortable on the trail. Don't forget: a good sturdy pair of hiking boots or trail shoes is your number one piece of gear! 



The Norwalk River Valley Trail
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The NRVT is a local favorite; it offers the chance to take a walk in the woods without having to deal with any variable terrain. If you want to spend some time beneath the trees with a young child, or even push your baby in a stroller, the NRVT is the perfect spot. The Wilton Loop has an entrance on Route 7 at the corner of Wolfpit Road, with a park & ride lot right across from the trailhead. There is another entrance to the Wilton Loop at Merwin Meadows; this section of trail is set back from the road a bit more, but both sections are flat enough to walk comfortably with a stroller.

Gear List:
water bottle, bug spray (we recommend Natrapel 8-hour)



Wilton Town Forest
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The Town Forest, sometimes known as Wilton Woods, is the largest open space in town. It is also considered to be the most rugged, meaning that you will get the experience of variable terrain and interesting geography without having to even leave Wilton. Hiking all the way around the park is about two and a half miles, so it would be a great opportunity to introduce your children to the joys of hiking without taking them somewhere too overwhelming. 

Gear List:
water bottle, bug spray, extra layer, small first aid kit (we recommend Family Medic from Adventure Medical Kit), whistle



Devil's Den Preserve
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Devil's Den in Weston and Redding is the largest preserve in Fairfield County, at 1,746 acres. It encompasses 20 miles of trails and has variable terrain with ponds and streams. Depending on your skill level, a hike around the park would take around 3 or 4 hours, but it is definitely possible to explore deeper and spend the entire day getting to know this huge park. The hike would be a bit strenuous for small children, but any child who is fit for a few hours of hiking will love this park (note: this park is not dog-friendly).

Gear List:
water bottle, bug spray, extra layer, small first aid kit, whistle, poncho, day pack (we recommend the Osprey Daylite), trail bar, knife/multitool (we recommend the Leatherman Supertool)




Appalachian Trail, CT Section
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The famous Appalachian Trail passes through the northwestern corner of Connecticut, and you only need to drive about an hour from Wilton to access it. The AT is a great option for an all-day hike, but we highly recommend taking it a step further for an overnight camping and hiking adventure. Keep in mind that it is a continuous trail, so unless you organize a ride back to your car you will be doing an out-and-back hike. One option we recommend, if you're hiking with a friend, is to take two cars and leave one at the ending point of your hike so that you can experience more of the trail without having to turn around and backtrack. Be sure to research in advance the parking spots that allow overnight parking and the areas that allow camping (there are many!).

Gear List:
water bottle, bug spray, extra layer, small first aid kit, whistle, poncho, day pack, trail bar, knife/multitool, freeze-dried meal, light stove (we recommend the Whisperlite from MSR), gas, tent, sleeping pad, sleeping bag (we recommend the Summerlite from Western Mountaineering), pot, utensils, headlamp, pack (we recommend a pack in the 30-48 liter range, such as the 35-liter Banchee from The North Face), water purifier, extra socks

 



 

Enter our Flag Contest!

07/18/2016



Win a gift card by entering our Facebook Flag Contest!!  Simply take a picture with our flag while exploring outdoors and post it to our Flacebook page for a chance to win. The flags are free and can be picked up from any register, anytime during store hours.

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Remember to take your Outdoor Sports Center Travel Flag with you everywhere you go! Show us how you enjoy Connecticut or explore someplace new by snapping a photo with your flag and posting it on our Facebook page. Leave a short caption letting us know where you are and what you're doing, and like our page to be eligible to win a a gift card to Outdoor Sports Center. 

 

1st place: $300

2nd place: $200

3rd place: $100


Entries are judged on creativity, composition, and all-around fun. If you're having a great time exploring outdoors with our flag, you'll be more eligible to win! We don't judge pictures based upon how far you have traveled or how "extreme" your adventure is, so feel free to even enter a photo from your own backyard.  


Terms and Conditions:

To enter, you must like our Facebook page and post your flag photo directly onto our page as a post ("visitor posts" show up on the lefthand side of our Facebook page). Limited to one entry per person. No inappropriate content.


No purchase necessary. Promotion begins July 18th, and all entries are due in by 11:59 PM EST on September 5th (Labor Day). Must be able to pick up prize in person at Outdoor Sports Center; prizes will not be shipped. Winner announced Friday September 9th. No employee of Outdoor Sports Center is eligible to win.


Conditions: By participating, entrants consent to use of their name, submission, and likeness for advertising, promotion and publicity purposes in any and all media now or hereafter devised, without additional compensation, notification or permission, except where prohibited by law. 

 

 

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The Sidewalk Sale is Here!

06/30/2016

 

Our biggest weekend of the year is right around the corner! Head to our Sidewalk Sale, July 14th-17th, for amazing deals on all your must-have gear. The Sidewalk Sale is our only blowout sale of the year, and every department will have items on sale, some for as much as 70% off. Deals like this only come around once a year, so don't miss out!

Head down to the store Thursday and Friday, July 14th and 15th, from 10-6; Saturday and Sunday, July 16th and 17th, we will be open 9-5.

On Sunday, July 17th, College Creamery will be handing out free ice cream from 1-4 PM! 


Here is a sneak preview of some of our favorite items that will be on sale from 30-70% off. Stop by on Thursday or Friday for smaller crowds and first dibs on all our amazing sale items. 

 

Gear up for a Hiking Trip

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Clothing, footwear, backpacks and more will get you ready to hit the trail.


A New Set of Wheels

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Nearly all 2016 bikes will be on sale for 20% off, and we'll have plenty of
clothing and helmets at rock bottom prices as well.

 

Get Ready for Winter

skiing

Get your winter shopping done early and save hundreds on gear and apparel.

 

Head Off the Grid

camping

From sturdy backpacks to fireside accessories, you can get stocked up
for your camping trips for less.  

 



 

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Water Shoes

05/26/2016


As temperatures rise and spring fades into summer, we all have one thing on our mind: water sports! There's nothing quite like a long afternoon paddleboard trip across the lake or a boat ride out on the sound. Even while hiking, there is nothing more refreshing than taking a break to wade through a nearby stream. No matter how you like to get your feet wet, we have an abundance of water shoes for everything you love to do in summer. Quick drying and breathable with tightly gripping soles, these shoes will keep your feet protected and keep you cool and comfortable all throughout the summer. 



Summer Hiking
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These shoes are made to be incredibly light and breathable, and we often recommend them to people who are taking a hiking trip in a warm weather climate. Wading through water in these is no problem; they dry very fast and will stay comfortable through whatever terrain you encounter. We carry the Capra Rapid and All Out Blaze Aero Sport from Merrell, and the Chaco Outcross Evo, all in men's and women's sizes.


Classic Boat Shoes
sperry
Sperry shoes were made for the deck of a boat. They were originally invented right here in Connecticut after founder Paul Sperry was inspired by his dog's ability to run across wet surfaces without sliding. The soles are non-marking and siped to keep you from slipping. The Sperry boating sneakers we carry are the Flex Deck CVO, Shock Light, and Sojourn Mesh.


Paddling and Portaging
astral
When you need to take your boat out of the water and portage, you'll want to have a good sturdy shoe to make your way over land while carrying your heavy boat. Astral makes water shoes that have sturdy, supportive soles with excellent tread to help you make your way back to the water with ease. Check out the Porter, Aquanut, and Loyak, available in men's and women's sizes.


Everyday Comfort
sandals
Our favorite everyday summer footwear is any one of these comfortable, water-loving sandals. You can't go wrong with a pair of classic Tevas, while Keens offer toe protection just in case you run into some terrain. Anhu is a new brand for us, and their sandals are amazingly light and comfortable. We carry several models of Teva and Keen sandals for men and women. From Anhu, we carry the Del Rey for men and the Tilden for women.


Lifeguarding and Traveling
olukai
Hawaiian Brand Olukai created the Eleu Trainer for the Hawaiian Lifeguarding Association. Whether you are running through sandy terrain or swimming in the sea, these shoes will hold up to the challenge. We also recommend them as a comfortable everyday travel shoe, great for light hiking. The Eleu Trainer comes in men's and women's sizes.

Tuesday & Saturday Group Runs

04/27/2016


Join us every Tuesday night at 6:15, and every other Saturday at 8 AM to train for the SONO Half Marathon! Group runs will be lead by James and Shannon Whipple, race directors of the half and Outdoor Sports Center Scott Maxwell and Chris Bertram. Get ready to run!


Tuesday Runs
We meet at the Park & Ride on the courner of Route 7 and Wolfpit Road Tuesdays at 6:15 PM to run on the Norwalk River Valley Trail. These runs will vary between 2 and 5 miles throughout the summer.

Saturday Morning Runs
Every other Saturday beginning July 30th, we will be holding longer runs of 6-11 miles on the SONO Half course! We will meet at Veteran's Park in Norwalk* at 8 AM, with representatives from some of our favorite brands holding clinics on select dates. 

View the complete training schedule here.


Please join our Facebook group to receive all of our Group Run updates and to learn which brands will be holding clinics at the Saturday runs. We encourage everyone to RSVP to our Facebook invitations for the Saturday morning runs so that we can have an idea of how many people will be joining us.


A sample map of the Saturday morning runs; this is the 6-mile route for July 30th:

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A sample map of a 3-mile Tuesday night run on the NRVT:

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Our group runs are open to all experience levels! Registration is not required to join in on the fun. Make sure to be well hydrated and fueled up before you run. No kids under 18 years old are allowed without a signed waiver or the supervision of a parent or guardian. You can pick up waivers at Outdoor Sports Center, snd we will also have them available at every run.

*Please note that Norwalk residents with valid resident permits may park at Veteran's Park for free, while non-residents will have to pay $5 or can use any Norwalk Parking Authority Lot for a nominal charge. Please visit  http://www.norwalkpark.org/map  for more info, or consult the map below:

 parking map

 

More on the next page...