Riverwear began in 1983 when Charlie and Christy Thompson designed a quick-dry white-water short for river rafters. They started by sewing in their home, producing and selling 450 shorts in ’84. In ’85 they contracted their shorts to a commercial manufacturer in Hamilton Montana, while they developed their first fleece jacket and pants.
After outgrowing their basement, they rented a space in Salmon, Idaho, where they produced their own clothing and had a store. By 1989 they had moved the shop three times and were selling Riverwear and other lines of clothing.
In the same year, they opened a retail store for the summer season in Stanley, Idaho. By 1992 there was a Riverwear in Twin Falls, Idaho, as well as one in Stanley and Salmon. Eventually the two shops in Salmon and Twin Falls were sold, and now they happily spend their summers in Stanley where the store is open from the spring through the fall.
Charlie and Christy Thompson have been enjoying all that the Idaho wilderness has to offer since the ’60s, and love sharing it with others. With nearly thirty years of guiding experience, Charlie is extremely knowledgeable of the Idaho rivers, and he uses that knowledge to fill the store with the right gear. Both Christy and Charlie are active in the Stanley community, and love being able to spend their time in the Sawtooths.
In 2002 Charlie and Christy’s daughter, Erin, moved to Stanley to manage the business. Riverwear is now managed by Erin and her husband Mark Wilson. Mark and Erin enjoy being in Stanley and look forward to many years of working and living in the Sawtooth Valley.