Although this week was hardly a harbinger of the warm weather to come, that's no reason to lose the spring in our steps.

Pretty soon, Charleston will be bustling with outdoor activities. Some of us will hit the ground running, others will make a splash with the paddles. And some will be on the sidelines every Saturday morning, bug spray in hand, cheering on their favorite little ones.

Whatever activities spring holds for you and your family, there's bound to be a some sort of gear purchase involved. It's a shame that we have to spend money sometimes to enjoy the great outdoors, but I'm here to help you keep that spending to a minimum.

Child's play

Families with athletic kids are probably the most familiar with how much sports equipment can cost. Buying new equipment every season can drain your budget, so buy used gear whenever possible. Play It Again Sports in Mount Pleasant is a great resource for used equipment for nearly every sport. And don't forget, you can sell your used kids' gear whenever they grow out of them.

By the sea

Dick's Sporting Goods has fishing gear marked down by 20 percent to 50 percent off. They have a special this week for $1 fishing rods when you purchase a reel, which are priced as low as $39.

If you're in the market for a new canoe or kayak, some of the Dick's exclusive models are $100 cheaper than usual this week.

Land-side gear

All Coleman brand camping gear is on sale at Target, which may be good news for those heading on a weekend fishing trip or who have a camping music festival coming up.

If the warm weather means you'll be going for more outdoor jogs, you may want to consider buying some new running gear. The pavement can be rough on your joints, so make sure you find a pair of shoes that fit well and cushion your feet. Asics are my personal favorite, which are on sale at Sports Authority for as low as $60. But the sports retailer also has good deals on Nikes and New Balances, which are also premium brands of running shoes.

The sunshine will make you perspire more than you would inside the gym, so get some running clothes that will stay dry as you run., a flash deal site, is featuring big markdowns on all Under Armour gear for men and women right now. But get to the site fast, the sale could be over by Sunday.

Reach Abigail Darlington at 937-5906 and follow her on Twitter @A_Big_Gail.