It was New Year’s Eve, 2015, and Jimmy Funkhouser was done with his soul-crushing corporate gig. When his buddy asked him about his goals for 2016, Funkhouser thought hard for a minute before responding, “I want to do what I would do if I wasn’t afraid.”

Funkhouser opened Feral Mountain Co. just eight weeks later on March 4, 2015. Now nearing its one-year anniversary and nestled in an old house smack in the middle of Denver’s Berkeley neighborhood, Feral Mountain is a brick-and-mortar outdoor goods store born out of ingenuity, necessity, and just the right amount of perseverance. And Funkhouser’s no longer doing it alone. Big-name, innovative brands like Outdoor Research, Eagle’s Nest Outfitters, Smartwool and Mountain Hardwear have partnered with Feral.

“I felt like a door-to-door salesman for a while, but it ended up working,” says Funkhouser.

It’s not just about gear. To help grow the outdoor community, Feral hosts multiple hiking and snowshoe meetups, as well as a monthly outdoor movie night in the summer. Funkhouser wouldn’t operate his business any other way. “I just want to be the guy that helps people fall in love with the outdoors,” he says.

—Heather Balogh