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    The Beginning

    In the early 2000s NW Alpine founder Bill Amos found himself dissatisfied with technical clothing options for alpine climbing. In an effort to appeal to the broader public, many outdoor companies were slowly turning away from the needs of their core audience and were becoming more fashion oriented. Bill envisioned a simple, functional and extremely durable apparel line for people who were really out there in the alpine. At the tail end of the 2008 recession Bill was inspired to realize his vision. He believed that the only way we would have a real economic recovery in the U.S. is if we started making things here again. There are not very many companies that make apparel in the U.S., and even fewer who make climbing specific apparel, but Bill thought there would be a lot of people who would support it.

    From this spark of an idea, NW Alpine was launched in 2010. The founding mission of the company was to: make clothes for climbing that are simple, functional, light, and of the highest quality; support domestic manufacturing; and provide the best customer service.

    Waypoints

    2010

    Starting Small

    We worked with independent designers and local contract manufacturers to produce our first small runs of minimal and tough-as-nails alpine gear, bringing Bill's vision to life.

    NW Alpine Patterns
    NW Alpine Handmade Apparel
    NW Alpine Founder at Work

    NW Alpine's first world headquarters.

    2013

    Product Highlight

    An early iteration of the Eyebright jacket, along with the Fast/Light (now Wy'East softshell) are featured in a NW Alpine profile article by Gear Junkie.

    "The gear has been through tough conditions such as the ascents of the Northwest Face of Mount Dickey and the 6,400-meter Hispar Sar in Pakistan."

    See Full Article

     

    Product Highlight

    An early iteration of the Eyebright jacket, along with the Fast/Light (now Wy'East softshell) are featured in a NW Alpine profile article by Gear Junkie.

    "The gear has been through tough conditions such as the ascents of the Northwest Face of Mount Dickey and the 6,400-meter Hispar Sar in Pakistan."

    See Full Article

     

     

     

    Product Highlight

    An early iteration of the Eyebright jacket, along with the Fast/Light (now Wy'East softshell) are featured in a NW Alpine profile article by Gear Junkie.

    "The gear has been through tough conditions such as the ascents of the Northwest Face of Mount Dickey and the 6,400-meter Hispar Sar in Pakistan."

    See Full Article

     

     

     

    NW Alpine Eyebright Jacket and Fast and Light Jacket

    Steve Su on the first ascent of Hispar Sar back in 2011.

    Bill on rare Columbia River Gorge ice in 2013.

    2014

    KICHATNA apparel manufacturing is founded

    One of the biggest hurdles we faced in the early years was getting our gear manufactured when our contractors focused on larger clients. In 2014 we made a big leap and bought out a contract sewing business in Newberg, Oregon. We started our own contract sewing company, Kichatna Apparel Manufacturing LLC, to ensure that we would have guaranteed access to manufacturing and to provide a domestic manufacturing alternative to other apparel companies.

    NW Alpine Factory Workers

    2016

    Product Highlight

    The Black Spider Hoody is recognized by Outside Online in the article "The Only Winter Clothes You Need"

    See Full Article

    The Black Spider Hoody gets even more recognition in subsequent years:

    In a 2018 gear review article that appeared in Climbing Magazine the reviewer wrote: "I’ve worn the Black Spider Hoody on everything from 5.9 trad romps to at-my-limit redpoints, with multiple other jackets (a hybrid shell and a puffy) layered over it. It never fails to deliver. Warm, light, bomber, quick-to-dry, and with just a dash of style, this is a killer climber’s piece."

    See Full Article

    The Outside Online Gear Guy recognized the hoody again in 2019 when he named it in a list of his all-time favorite base layers:

    "On top of being a star at the ski resort and on the skin track, beneath other layers on both occasions, I found this technical-yet-minimalist top perfect on its own during a 19-mile trail run and a 56-mile road ride."

    See Full Article

     

    Product Highlight

    The Black Spider Hoody is recognized by Outside Online in the article "The Only Winter Clothes You Need"

    See Full Article

    The Black Spider Hoody gets even more recognition in subsequent years:

    In a 2018 gear review article that appeared in Climbing Magazine the reviewer wrote: "I’ve worn the Black Spider Hoody on everything from 5.9 trad romps to at-my-limit redpoints, with multiple other jackets (a hybrid shell and a puffy) layered over it. It never fails to deliver. Warm, light, bomber, quick-to-dry, and with just a dash of style, this is a killer climber’s piece."

    See Full Article

    The Outside Online Gear Guy recognized the hoody again in 2019 when he named it in a list of his all-time favorite base layers:

    "On top of being a star at the ski resort and on the skin track, beneath other layers on both occasions, I found this technical-yet-minimalist top perfect on its own during a 19-mile trail run and a 56-mile road ride."

    See Full Article

     

    Product Highlight

    The Black Spider Hoody is recognized by Outside Online in the article "The Only Winter Clothes You Need"

    See Full Article

    The Black Spider Hoody gets even more recognition in subsequent years:

    In a 2018 gear review article that appeared in Climbing Magazine the reviewer wrote: "I’ve worn the Black Spider Hoody on everything from 5.9 trad romps to at-my-limit redpoints, with multiple other jackets (a hybrid shell and a puffy) layered over it. It never fails to deliver. Warm, light, bomber, quick-to-dry, and with just a dash of style, this is a killer climber’s piece."

    See Full Article

    The Outside Online Gear Guy recognized the hoody again in 2019 when he named it in a list of his all-time favorite base layers:

    "On top of being a star at the ski resort and on the skin track, beneath other layers on both occasions, I found this technical-yet-minimalist top perfect on its own during a 19-mile trail run and a 56-mile road ride."

    See Full Article

     

    Product Highlight

    The Black Spider Hoody is recognized by Outside Online in the article "The Only Winter Clothes You Need"

    See Full Article

    The Black Spider Hoody gets even more recognition in subsequent years:

    In a 2018 gear review article that appeared in Climbing Magazine the reviewer wrote: "I’ve worn the Black Spider Hoody on everything from 5.9 trad romps to at-my-limit redpoints, with multiple other jackets (a hybrid shell and a puffy) layered over it. It never fails to deliver. Warm, light, bomber, quick-to-dry, and with just a dash of style, this is a killer climber’s piece."

    See Full Article

    The Outside Online Gear Guy recognized the hoody again in 2019 when he named it in a list of his all-time favorite base layers:

    "On top of being a star at the ski resort and on the skin track, beneath other layers on both occasions, I found this technical-yet-minimalist top perfect on its own during a 19-mile trail run and a 56-mile road ride."

    See Full Article

     

    Product Highlight

    The Black Spider Hoody is recognized by Outside Online in the article "The Only Winter Clothes You Need"

    See Full Article

    The Black Spider Hoody gets even more recognition in subsequent years:

    In a 2018 gear review article that appeared in Climbing Magazine the reviewer wrote: "I’ve worn the Black Spider Hoody on everything from 5.9 trad romps to at-my-limit redpoints, with multiple other jackets (a hybrid shell and a puffy) layered over it. It never fails to deliver. Warm, light, bomber, quick-to-dry, and with just a dash of style, this is a killer climber’s piece."

    See Full Article

    The Outside Online Gear Guy recognized the hoody again in 2019 when he named it in a list of his all-time favorite base layers:

    "On top of being a star at the ski resort and on the skin track, beneath other layers on both occasions, I found this technical-yet-minimalist top perfect on its own during a 19-mile trail run and a 56-mile road ride."

    See Full Article

     

    Product Highlight

    The Black Spider Hoody is recognized by Outside Online in the article "The Only Winter Clothes You Need"

    See Full Article

    The Black Spider Hoody gets even more recognition in subsequent years:

    In a 2018 gear review article that appeared in Climbing Magazine the reviewer wrote: "I’ve worn the Black Spider Hoody on everything from 5.9 trad romps to at-my-limit redpoints, with multiple other jackets (a hybrid shell and a puffy) layered over it. It never fails to deliver. Warm, light, bomber, quick-to-dry, and with just a dash of style, this is a killer climber’s piece."

    See Full Article

    The Outside Online Gear Guy recognized the hoody again in 2019 when he named it in a list of his all-time favorite base layers:

    "On top of being a star at the ski resort and on the skin track, beneath other layers on both occasions, I found this technical-yet-minimalist top perfect on its own during a 19-mile trail run and a 56-mile road ride."

    See Full Article

     

    NW Alpine Green Black Spider Hoody

    Product Highlight

    Our 2016 Belay Jacket is recognized for its versatile durability by Climbing Magazine in their list of the top 5 belay jackets which appeared in the article "Review: Our Top 5 Belay Jackets"

    "A high-end, versatile, and warm synthetic puffy that’s trustworthy in any condition with a bargain-basement price. Testers chose it again and again because of its warmth, toughness, and minimal packed size."

    Read full review.

    Product Highlight

    Our 2016 Belay Jacket is recognized for its versatile durability by Climbing Magazine in their list of the top 5 belay jackets which appeared in the article "Review: Our Top 5 Belay Jackets"

    "A high-end, versatile, and warm synthetic puffy that’s trustworthy in any condition with a bargain-basement price. Testers chose it again and again because of its warmth, toughness, and minimal packed size." Read full review.

    Product Highlight

    Our 2016 Belay Jacket is recognized for its versatile durability by Climbing Magazine in their list of the top 5 belay jackets which appeared in the article "Review: Our Top 5 Belay Jackets"

    "A high-end, versatile, and warm synthetic puffy that’s trustworthy in any condition with a bargain-basement price. Testers chose it again and again because of its warmth, toughness, and minimal packed size." Read full review.

    NW Alpine Belay Jacket Blue

    2017

    What a year! So much happened in 2017. It was the year that we experienced the most growth and really started to solidify ourselves as a serious climbing apparel company. The biggest event of the year was our acquisition of and move-in to our own factory outside of Salem, Oregon. We had finally grown too big for our old space in Newberg!

    Rebrand

    NW Alpine underwent a rebrand and the mountain logo was introduced.

    Product Highlight

    The now-classic Volo pant was released for the first time as part of our fall 2017 line.

    NW Alpine 2017 Volo Pant Blue

    Product Highlight

    The now-classic Volo pant was released for the first time as part of our Fall 2017 line.

    Product Highlight

    The now-classic Volo pant was released for the first time as part of our Fall 2017 line.

    Product Highlight

    The first iteration of our Spectra® shirts were introduced in late 2017 in collaboration with Honeywell, bringing apparel made with Spectra® fiber to the market for the first time.

    2018

    The Big Move

    The biggest event of the year was moving in to our new factory outside of Salem, Oregon. We had finally grown too big for our old space in Newberg!

    NW Alpine Factory Fabric Rolls
    NW Alpine Factory Laser Cutter
    NW Alpine Orange Belay Jacket

    Product Highlight

    The Eyebright jacket wins a 2018 German Design Award Gold Medal for Excellent Product Design in the category of Sports, Outdoor Activities and Leisure.

    "The Eyebright sports jacket combines extreme lightness with a high level of robustness, wearing comfort and water resistance – a perfect item for outdoor sports such as climbing. The well-crafted design does away with all superfluous visual details in favour of focussing 100 % on functionality. A fantastic product that makes perfect use of the latest high-tech fibres."

    See Award

    The Eyebright jacket is included in a list of "The Best Men's Thru-hiking Gear of 2018" by Outside Online

    "Reaping the benefits of Dyneema’s legendary strength-to-weight ratio, the Eyebright is 30 percent lighter than other jackets we tested. After a year of roughing it up, it has yet to show any signs of wear."

    See Full Article

    The Eyebright jacket and NW Alpine is also given recognition by Gear Patrol in the article "This Small Oregon Brand Is Taking Innovation to the Next Level".

    "NW Alpine took our favorite material and made a revolutionary jacket out of it."

    See Full Article

    NW Alpine 2018 Eyebright Jacket

    2019

    Product Highlight

    Our Fortis Spectra® Hoody and Spectra® Rock Hoody are introduced.


    2020

    NW Alpine Celebrates 10 years

    We had some special things planned for this milestone but everything changed in the Spring of 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic turned the world upside down. Cases rose exponentially in the U.S. and we watched as hospitals filled and the country scrambled to respond to something it hadn’t planned for. Planning was so bad that no one could even ensure the most basic protective equipment for our doctors, nurses, and essential workers. In response, NW Alpine joined the ranks of countless other manufacturers to address the PPE shortage and do our small part to help fight the COVID-19 pandemic. Even after the pandemic ends we are committed to producing PPE to help the U.S. prepare for the next emergency.

    NW Alpine 10 Year Anniversary Logo

    Today, NW Alpine is still going strong. We continue to grow year by year but we remain committed as ever to high quality climbing apparel, domestic manufacturing, and our community.

    Today, NW Alpine is still going strong. We continue to grow year by year but we remain committed as ever to high quality climbing apparel, domestic manufacturing, and our community.

    NW Alpine 2021 Compass Logo
    NW Alpine Repaired Softshell Pant