Mountain Hardwear

Mountain Hardwear is a subsidiary of Columbia Sportswear based in Richmond, California that manufactures and distributes apparel, accessories and equipment primarily for the high performance needs of mountaineering enthusiasts and outdoor athletes, as well as for consumers who are inspired by the outdoor lifestyle.

Mountain Hardwear
FoundedRichmond, California, USA (1993)
HeadquartersRichmond, California, USA
Key people
Joe Vernachio, President
ProductsOuterwear, sportswear
$101.6 million (2017)
ParentColumbia Sportswear


Mountain Hardwear was founded in 1993 in Richmond, California by a small group of former employees of Sierra Designs. Soon after, Mountain Hardwear's first sponsored athlete, Ed Viesturs, the first American to climb all fourteen 8,000 meter peaks (8000ers), helped develop several of the company's products.[1] Today, Mountain Hardwear continues to associate with elite Alpine athletes.

Columbia Sportswear acquired Mountain Hardwear in 2003. The company is headquartered in Richmond, California. Mountain Hardwear opened its first retail location in Portland, Oregon in April 2008. A Seattle, Washington retail store opened on December 5, 2008. The company has over 90 people in their California office, and more than 35 sales reps and associates in the United States and other countries.


Mountain Hardwear sponsors a number of athletes. Most are alpinists, climbers, or skiers. Sponsored athletes include:[2]

Vivian Bruchez, Tim Emmet, Cheyne Lempe, Mike Libecki, Angela Payne, Ethan Pringle, Freddie Wilkinson.


  • 1993 Mountain Hardwear founded
  • 1995 First window use in tent flies[citation needed]
  • 1996 Pioneered Windstopper Fleece
  • 1997 Storm Light (later named Conduit) waterproof/breathable membrane introduced
  • 1999 Welded technology first used in apparel
  • 1999 Conical Waists (patent) on pants and rotated seams on shirts for backpacking
  • 1999 Babu Chiri Sherpa is the first person to overnight night on Everest summit in MHW tent
  • 2000 Pioneered Gore-Tex XCR
  • 2001 Partnered with Gore to develop Windstopper next-to-skin garment fabric
  • 2002 Launch WindStopper softshell
  • 2003 First waterproof sleeping bags
  • 2006 Exodus Backpack System
  • 2008 Introduced 25D Hollow-core tent flysheets
  • 2009 Pioneered OutDry 3D lamination technology for gloves
  • 2011 Pioneered DryQ waterproof/breathable fabrics
  • 2011 Introduced ultra-light ripstop fabric - Ghost Whisperer - in anorak and down insulated jacket


  1. ^ Jake Snyder. "Brand spotlight: Mountain Hardwear". Gearx. Retrieved December 20, 2018.
  2. ^ "Our Athletes". Mountain Hardwear. Retrieved December 20, 2018.

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