REI Prices are Not Competitive

I'm a huge fan of the outdoors, but after purchasing an Ironman watch from my local REI and then comparing the price I paid against other retailers, I soon found out that I was paying a huge premium. I understand REI has rent and needs to pay for its knowledgeable staff, but a price different of more than a 100% (28.00 dollars vs 69.95 dollars) seems to be excessive.
I always try to shop at local brick and mortar shops, but don't forget to do your due diligence as a customer or you'll find yourself making an unnecessary purchase and return as I did.

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ConsumerPete on 3/5/13
Are you sure the watch you're comparing the price to is actually a legitimate copy and not a bootleg? Amazon sellers often sell bootlegs, unbeknownst to Amazon.
Just checking on 3/1/13