The North Face began as a San Francisco-based climbing equipment retail store, founded in 1966 by Douglas Tompkins and his then-wife, Susie Tompkins.It was acquired two years later by Kenneth "Hap" Klopp.The north face of a mountain in the northern hemisphere is generally the coldest, iciest and most formidable route to climb
For a time, the store offered only highly selective merchandise, targeted to climbers and backpackers. By the 1980s, skiwear was added, followed by camping equipment.The North Face is now a wholly owned subsidiary of the VF Corporation.It is headquartered in Alameda, California, co-located with its corporate sibling, JanSport.In 2007, JanSport was the world's largest backpack manufacturer; combined, the two manufactured nearly half of all small backpacks sold in the United States.
The North Face's quarter-circle logo, produced by California designer David Alcorn in 1971, evokes Half Dome, a massive granitic monolith in Yosemite National Park.The North Face maintains strong links with the outdoor community through sponsoring athletes, including Lizzy Hawker, winner of the Ultra Trail Tour du Mont Blanc in 2005, 2008 and 2010.
Douglas Rainsford Tompkins (March 20, 1943 – December 8, 2015) was an American conservationist, outdoorsman,filmmaker, and businessman who assembled and preserved the land which became the largest gift of private land to government in South America
North Face attire has grown in popularity.The rise in the popularity of the North Face attire has resulted in wearers of the line becoming the targets of robbery. In early 2005, a group of teenagers from Washington D.C. were arrested on charges including the armed robbery of, specifically, The North Face jackets from students on the street.
The North Face, Inc. is an American outdoor company specializing in outerwear, fleece, coats, shirts, footwear, and equipment such as backpacks, tents, and sleeping
Its clothing and equipment lines are catered towards college students, climbers, mountaineers, skiers, snowboarders, hikers, and athletes
In addition to selling through department stores and outdoor retailers, The North Face operates over 55 retail and 20 outlet locations in the United States, 4 retail and 2 outlet locations in Canada,19 locations in the United Kingdom and many others worldwide.