Utah asks Trump to rescind Bears Ears NM, Patagonia pulls out of Outdoor Retailer

Patagonia says it will withdraw from Outdoor Retailer immediately.

Rose Marcario, President and CEO of Patagonia.

Rose Marcario, President and CEO of Patagonia. // Photo: Tommaso Mei

Patagonia announced early this morning that it would not be attending Outdoor Retailer Summer Market this year, or any future shows hosted in Utah, because of the state's opposition to Bears Ears National Monument and other public lands issues.

On Friday, Utah Gov. Gary Herbert urged the Trump administration to revoke the monument status of Bears Ears, which President Barack Obama designated in December after a long fight. The land is sacred to Native American tribes in the area, and it holds countless recreation opportunities, advocates argued.

Herbert is "making it clear that he and other Utah elected officials do not support public lands conservation nor do they value the economic benefits–$12 billion in consumer spending and 122,000 jobs–that the outdoor recreation industry brings to their state," Patagonia President and CEO Rose Marcario said in a statement issued Tuesday morning. "Because of the hostile environment they have created and their blatant disregard for Bears Ears National Monument and other public lands, the backbone of our business, Patagonia will no longer attend the Outdoor Retailer show in Utah and we are confident other outdoor manufacturers and retailers will join us in moving our investment to a state that values our industry and promotes public lands conservation."

Patagonia has one retail store in Utah, in Salt Lake City, and is not considering closing that store.

"In addition to being a place where you can purchase Patagonia products, our stores serve as centers of environmental activism," Corley Kenna, director of global communications and PR for Patagonia, wrote in an email. "We look forward to continuing that tradition of convening people around environmental issues that cross all political boundaries and impact all people."

During Outdoor Retailer Winter Market last month, Black Diamond founder Peter Metcalf wrote an op-ed in the Salt Lake Tribune urging OR to move out of the state because of its legislators' attempts to sell and privatize public lands.

Patagonia founder Yvon Chouinard also penned a letter to Herbert during Winter Market, telling him that the brand would stop going to the trade show in Salt Lake City if Utah did not come around and start actively supporting public lands rather than opposing them.

Outdoor Retailer announced on Monday afternoon that it would be seeking proposals for new venues for the trade show, and may move as early as fall 2018. The public lands debate was a significant factor in considering other cities to host the show.

Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox held a press conference at the show from the booth of Salt Lake City-based Kühl, claiming that Utah has a great relationship with OR and the outdoor community. He brushed off Metcalf's op-ed as the opinion of "one individual," but Chouinard's letter was released minutes after his statements. After hearing of Chouinard's letter, Kühl President Kevin Boyle said his brand would likely follow Patagonia in the event of a boycott of the show. Boyle is out of the country at the ISPO trade show in Germany, and was unavailable for comment Tuesday morning.

Outdoor Retailer brings an estimated $45 million annually to Utah's economy.


Patagonia launches virtual reality videos of Bears Ears

Patagonia has launched a series of 360-degree videos highlighting the beauty, history, and outdoor recreation opportunities of Bears Ears National Monument. The monument’s status—as well as the Antiquities Act, which allowed former President Barack Obama to designate it—is ...read more

Bears Ears

Interior Sec. Zinke recommends shrinking Bears Ears National Monument

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke says he spent days learning "more about Bears Ears than [he] ever thought possible." After taking a multi-day tour through the area, he announced Monday that he has recommended President Donald Trump shrink the boundaries of Bears Ears National ...read more

The Bears Ears Buttes in summertime.

Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition threatens to sue Trump

Leaders from the Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition called Trump's national monument review a thinly veiled attack on the monument. If President Donald Trump tries to rescind the protected status of Bears Ears National Monument, he’ll be hit with a lawsuit to the fullest extent ...read more

utah protest 6

It’s official: Trump slashes Utah national monuments

“There are no words. It’s heartbreaking,” Ace Kvale, outdoor photographer, told SNEWS as he was leaving the Salt Lake City protest against President Trump’s controversial announcement to downsize both Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante. With much resistance but little ...read more

Yvon Chouinard

Yvon Chouinard stars in Patagonia's first TV ad

In a first for the brand, Patagonia will air a commercial throughout the state of Montana this week, aimed at Interior Sec. Ryan Zinke. Zinke has just a few days left before he must give President Donald Trump official recommendations on the monuments currently under review. ...read more

patagonia homepage March 29, 2018

Patagonia calling out "lies"

On Thursday, Patagonia’s homepage slideshow featured pictures of a surfer riding a wave, the new micro puff, a dam, and other colorful scenes. By the end of the day, another, more stark image had been added to the mix. The black screen is back, with a new message this time: “The ...read more

Outdoor Retailer move poll

Three more brands pull out of Outdoor Retailer

Three brands announced Thursday that they would boycott Outdoor Retailer in Utah to show support for public lands. Arc’teryx will pull out of Outdoor Retailer this summer and reallocate its OR budget to donate to the Conservation Alliance’s Public Lands Defense Fund, the brand ...read more

Bears Ears National Monument

Bears Ears: Why not?

Bears Ears National Monument stands quiet. Sunbaked terracotta pillars hold sentinel like broken chess pieces over a sandy board. Wind stirs the pinyon pine, flicking drifts of sand at the feet of thousand-year-old petroglyphs. Waves of heat vibrate in the valleys, a soft pulse. ...read more


Now is the time to protect Bears Ears

More than 50 years ago, when signing the groundbreaking Wilderness Act, President Lyndon Johnson said: “If future generations are to remember us with gratitude rather than contempt, we must leave them a glimpse of the world as it was in the beginning, not just after we got ...read more