In 1981, John Nemjo’s interest in paddlesports grew exponentially when he bought his first canoe from a friend in northeast Florida. He spent the following 12 years exploring the streams, rivers, and springs throughout the state. He brought his passion for paddling and of the outdoors with him to the Adirondacks in 1993 where he opened his first store in an old abandoned pizza shop in Inlet, New York. This store, affectionately known as Mountainman Outdoor Supply Company, gained massive popularity among the locals and became the go-to place for canoes, kayaks, and camping gear.
In 1998, Mountainman started hosting an annual paddling event for customers to spend the weekend test paddling boats, seeing accessories in person, and picking the brains of the dozens of boat vendors and sales staff. This event became known as Paddlefest. Paddlefest gained massive popularity over the years as many locals and visitors from all over the northeast gathered to test boats and see the new technologies offered from the large selection of paddlesport brands.
As its popularity grew, Mountainman had outgrown its first home in Inlet and relocated to Old Forge, New York, on a 3 acre property at the headwaters of the Northern Forest Canoe Trail in the Adirondack Mountains. Placed on 1,200 feet of contiguous feet of riverfront on Moose River, Mountainman grew to a massive success selling specialty outdoor gear and apparel, canoes, kayaks, and SUPs, while also doing boat rentals for the locals and visitors interested in getting the full experience of paddling in the Adirondacks.
When Mountainman expanded to where it currently resides at 490 Broadway in Saratoga Springs, it originally started out as a “Life is Good” store. After becoming a huge hit on Broadway, John decided to turn this location into another outdoor gear and clothing retailer just like his Old Forge location. Having been in Saratoga for over 10 years now, they have become a reputable outdoor gear, apparel, and footwear store well-loved by the locals. Their versatility in lifestyle clothing and outdoor apparel drew in all different types of customers in the capital region.
Today, Mountainman Outdoor Supply Company’s Saratoga location is now known as Saratoga Outdoors after splitting off from its original store in Old Forge.