The Innovation Project | Summit Hut

In the 5th episode of The Innovation Project, Summit Hut's Dana Davis explains why they pay their employees to go hiking.
Author:
Publish date:

** To watch more episodes of The Innovation Project, click here.

Dana Davis was a longtime employee of Summit Hut in Tuscon, Ariz., when she and her husband, Jeremy, bought it from founder David Baker in 2011.

Summit Hut started an e-commerce website in 1998—early for a specialty retail shop—and the shop relaunched its web platform two years ago.

Jeremy and Dana Davis, owners of Summit Hut

Jeremy and Dana Davis bought Summit Hut from its founder in 2011. // Photo: Courtesy Dana Davis

But what really makes Summit Hut unique is that it pays its employees to test gear, which has helped establish the two locations as regionally relevant retailers.

“We work really hard to make sure all of our staff know the trails really well, that they know the area and that they’ve tried out the product,” Davis says in this episode of The Innovation Project. “It gives us a chance to really be able to communicate with the customer.”

MountainHardwearLogo

This nine-part series was produced in partnership with Mountain Hardwear.

Related

Sportago

The Innovation Project: Sportago

Sportago has been in business for 33 years largely thanks to a hyperlocal customer base in St. Helena, California. They’re a loyal bunch, but that means the store has to work hard to keep up with frequent shoppers’ demand for new product. “Versatility is really important,” ...read more

Photo by Caveman Collective

The Innovation Project: Midwest Mountaineering

** To watch more episodes of The Innovation Project, click here. Rod Johnson started Midwest Mountaineering, in Minneapolis, 46 years ago in his kitchen. He was “poor as a church mouse,” he says, and used his father’s business letterhead to buy gear at wholesale prices and ...read more

The Benchmark Outfitters

Innovation Project | The Benchmark Outfitters

** To watch more episodes of The Innovation Project, click here. For retailers in cities where wilderness can be up to six hours away, as The Benchmark Outfitters' owner Richard Kassar estimates is the case for his customers, the issues that shop owners face are a little bit ...read more

SNEWS April Editor's Note

Innovation Project | Alpenglow Sports

For Alpenglow Sports owner Brendan Madigan, "sharing the stoke" is as important to his business as the bottom line. ** To watch more episodes of The Innovation Project, click here. "I think people derive happiness, not from things, but from experiences and relationships," he ...read more

bakcountrynorththumb

Innovation Project | Backcountry North

** To watch more episodes of The Innovation Project, click here. If Backcountry North's Tracy Mayer has anything to say about it, brick and mortar specialty retail isn't going anywhere. "Part of the fun and the experience of that travel or adventure or trip is coming into a ...read more

-Chris Haunold

The Innovation Project: Idaho Mountain Touring

** To watch more episodes of The Innovation Project, click here. Produced in partnership with Mountain Hardwear. Chris Haunold, owner of Idaho Mountain Touring, has been in the biz for more than 30 years. But his love for gear goes back even further, and still drives what ...read more

Slide11 (1)

Innovation Project | Black Creek Outfitters

** To watch more episodes of The Innovation Project, click here. For Black Creek Outfitters's Joe Butler, the experience that comes with his shop is even more important than the shop itself, and he's taken extra steps to make sure his customers get what they need. The store ...read more