The North Face

1966 – The North Face was founded in San Francisco’s North Beach area as a retailer of high performance climbing and backpacking equipment. The name was selected because in the Northern Hemisphere, the north face of a mountain is generally the coldest, iciest and most formidable to climb.

1968 – The North Face began designing and manufacturing its own brand of high performance clothing and equipment. By the early 1980’s, extreme skiwear was added to its product offerings. By the end of the decade, The North Face became the only supplier in the United States to offer a comprehensive collection of high-performance outerwear, skiwear, sleeping bags, packs and tents.

1975 – The North Face introduced the Oval Intention tent, the first lightweight geodesic dome tent, and the first to incorporate flexible aluminum poles. The design of the Oval Intention set the standard for tents used in high altitude and polar expeditions.

1978 – The VE-24 was introduced as a direct descendent of the Oval Intention. This tent was the perfect embodiment of Buckminster Fuller’s theory of sphericity incorporating “maximum efficiency with minimum materials.”

1979 – The North Face invented shingle construction which has become a standard among top-of-the-line sleeping bags with synthetic insulation.

1982 – The North Face added extreme skiwear to its product offering.

1983 – To meet the growing demand for The North Face products from consumers on the Old Continent, the Company begins its operations in Europe.

1985 – The Mountain Jacket was designed and has become a staple of the serious athlete. The Mountain Jacket soon spawned the development of the Expedition System“ and set the rigid design standards for all The North Face outerwear.

1988 – The Company introduced its Expedition System“, a comprehensive, integrated cold weather clothing system with zip-in features. This year also marks the introduction of the Mountain Light Jacket, which has since become one of the most popular jackets in the world.

1992 – Radial Baffle Construction of down sleeping bags was introduced. This was the most significant development in down sleeping bag construction in 30 years. This exclusive construction method guarantees optimum warmth efficiency.

1993 – The North Face is one of the first companies to use Polarguard“ HV insulation in sleeping bags.

1996 – The Company introduced Tekware“, an innovative line of functional sportswear made from a new generation of synthetic fabrics, designed both for outdoor activities and everyday use. This year also highlights the introduction of Hydrenaline‘, a virtually weightless protective layer that is wind resistant, water resistant and extremely breathable for high aerobic activities. Polarguard“ 3D insulation introduced exclusively by The North Face, revolutionized synthetic insulation in 1996. It is the lightest, warmest, most durable and most compressible synthetic insulation ever developed.

1999 – The North Face launched into performance footwear introducing trail running and trekking shoes. Our Trail Running shoes have set endurance records around the world.

2001 – The North Face introduces the MET5 Jacket, the first consumer product incorporating Polartec® Heat Technology and the first product in The North Face Intelligent Garment Technology™ Series.

2003 – Brand new from The North Face for Spring 2003: A5 Series bouldering inspired apparel for a generation of climbers and athletes who know no boundaries between sports and a way of life. From polos to tees and casual khakis, A5 series apparel is fun and comfortable for carefree living. In the spirit of the active core sportsperson who wants clothing as versatile and happening as the way they live their life.

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