Two California college students, Eric Reynolds and Dave Huntley, forged the beginnings of Marmot in the early 1970s, making prototypes of down apparel and sleeping bags in their dorm room. In 1974, together with cofounder Tom Boyce, they founded Marmot in Grand Junction, Colorado, as a retail and rental outlet.
Soon after Marmot’s humble roots, they earned their first big order—more than 100 puffy down jackets for the filming of The Eiger Sanction, starring Clint Eastwood. Marmot also became an early adopter of Gore-Tex fabrics in their production, adding waterproof protection to their product lines. Marmot's reputation for technical apparel was born.
Shortly after a 1991 acquisition of the company by Odyssey International, Marmot was faced with bankruptcy until Steve Crisafulli, Marmot’s president from 1991 to 2004, rallied his employees and management team to buy out the company for $3.5 million.
Crisafulli recently died in October 2018, yet his legacy persists. Marmot is going on 44 years and remains one of the most respected outdoor technical apparel and equipment makers.
[This is part three of a three-part series on 2020 gear trends. Read part one here and part two here.] Holly Phillips grew up in Ona, West Virginia, exploring the outdoors on fishing trips with her dad. The two would set out on a Friday evening, camp near a river, and start ...read more
From the outside, you might not guess that Brown's Outdoor—a cozy little shop in Port Angeles, Washington, at the northern tip of the state—is one of the oldest family-owned gear retailers in the country. The vibe of the place is decidedly unpretentious, the digs modest and ...read more
Stamping out racism The Outdoor CEO Diversity Pledge catalyzes business leaders to bust up the all-white club During the summer 2018 Outdoor Retailer show, Teresa Baker roamed the aisles and asked company leaders to sign her just-launched pledge to make outdoor businesses more ...read more
Industry headlines: Intriguing reads from around the web VF’s social consciousness: The parent company of The North Face and Smartwool snagged the top spot on Barron’s List of Most Socially Conscious Companies. Representation on public lands: Surveys of national parks show that ...read more
In 1992, I was hired as the first black independent sales representative for The North Face (TNF). Back then, TNF was privately owned and headquartered in Berkeley, California. On the way home from my very first sales meeting, I happened to bump into the company president, Bill ...read more
Challenging the narrative: A new exposé from National Geographic attacks the much-hyped and exhaustively publicized story of Colin O’Brady’s 2018 solo ski journey across Antarctica. [Adventure Journal] In memoriam: James "Jim" Lewis Throneburg, founder of the sock company Thorlos ...read more
Update: Utah State University's Outdoor Recreation Archive went live on Nov. 5. It includes catalogs from existing and defunct brands and can be viewed at exhibits.usu.edu/exhibits/show/outdoorcatalogs. As Clint Pumphrey sifted through stacks of outdoor brands' old catalogs, he ...read more
Maybe you've lost count of the number of Outdoor Retailer shows you've attended. Or maybe you're new to the industry, but have been a gearhead for years. To ace this quiz, you have to know which big outdoor conglomerates own which brands. Think you can score a perfect 10? This ...read more
The average American woman is 5 feet 3 inches tall, weighing about 165 pounds with a waist circumference of about 38. That's a pants size 16 or 18—sizes that most outdoor brands aren't making and retailers aren't selling. Marmot, and many others, stop at size 14 or 16 for women. ...read more
The massive collaborative effort to eliminate single-use plastic from Outdoor Retailer continues to gain steam, with less than two weeks until show time. Of the 200+ members of the Plastic Impact Alliance about 120 of them are exhibitors at OR and will be hosting in-booth water ...read more
Located on the shores of its namesake lake, Whitefish, Montana, is known for its dramatic outdoor vistas. But in the charming resort town, The Toggery has become its own kind of destination. Originally opened as Frank’s Shirt Shop in 1947 by Frank and Jessie Stephens, the store ...read more
Now that it's officially spring, we're itching to get on a trail that's not covered by snow. Not far from our office in Boulder, the Flatirons and foothills beckon us to trek up its peaks and valleys on our lunch breaks or after work. A daypack is essential to hold our water, ...read more
Keep up by reading Industry Buzz. Here are today's top headlines: Have a news tip? Email us at email@example.com. On Thursday, the Senate Energy Committee met to talk about outdoor recreation access, infrastructure, and permitting. This is the first step in what could be ...read more
Full disclosure: Gear is a wicked subjective thing. Always has been, always will be. To curate this list, our team of hardcore—and highly opinionated—gearheads pored over hundreds of new product launches, reading the specs and sifting through the marketing promises. We zoomed in ...read more
Cold, wet paws can ruin even a powder day, which is why gloves are lauded as one of the most important pieces of gear. Gloves or mittens, skinning or snowshoeing or just braving the bitter air, these brands are all trying to keep you from thinking about frostbite. Which brand ...read more
Judges at the 2019 ISPO show crowned a big batch of brands with awards for developments in technology and design as well as safety and comfort. Check out the best of the best in the outdoor and snowsports divisions. Not pictured: Lagoped EVE Jacket and SUPA ...read more
Immersion in social media and technology is taking a toll on us and the Pantone Color Institute believes that a vibrant yet mellow color will bring us all a little more joy. The world's self-proclaimed color gurus have declared Living Coral the color of the year for 2019. Its ...read more
Steve Crisafulli, who pulled Marmot out of peril in the ‘90s and was known for both pushing his employees to go the extra mile and also having their backs through anything, died last week at the age of 78. Crisafulli served as Marmot’s board chairman for one year before the ...read more
Fjällräven Abisko Trekking Tights As I descended the loose rock of a 13,000-foot mountain in Telluride, Colorado, my foot slipped. Feet first, I took the bumpy ride on my bum down a few feet of choss until I was stopped by a grassy patch. Expecting searing pain when I stood up, ...read more
When recreationists shop for outdoor gear, the sustainability of a product—from farm to factory to shelf—is becoming as important as the quality. The majority of U.S. consumers expect companies to act on social and environmental issues, and outdoor brands are moving that needle, ...read more
On a snowy day, back in February 2012, Dr. Gary Selwyn was busy in his kitchen in Santa Fe, New Mexico. He wasn’t fixing up a stew. Instead, he was blending hydrocarbon-based monomers, cross-linkers and polymerization initiators. The chemist, formerly at Los Alamos National ...read more
For almost a decade, industry professionals have wrung their hands over issues of diversity in outdoor recreation. Data from the 2010 U.S. Census formally revealed a demographic reality that many suspected, but few believed to be inevitable. The population is shifting. As ...read more
Happy Monday, everyone! By now, we hope you've made Industry Buzz part of your morning routine. If not, you should. Here's what the outdoor industry is buzzing about today. Do you have buzzworthy news tips? Email us at SNEWSedit@aimmedia.com. On Sunday, REI introduced the ...read more
As one of the biggest ticket items in your kit, a good tent is a serious investment. And, it’s your home-away-from-home, so it's also a wicked important decision. There are a ton of great brands out there, but we want to know: Which tent brand is your favorite? Vote now to see ...read more