Design at Kahtoola
At Kahtoola, we’re redesigning the way you approach your outdoor adventures. In our Flagstaff, Arizona workshop innovation is everywhere. We brainstorm, sketch, research, design, pull, tug, twist, bend and jump. We take our prototypes out for field tests as we run on ice around town, climb steep snowy terrain and scale mountain slopes on the San Francisco Peaks. We ask our fellow associates, athletes and outdoor-oriented friends to do the same to gather as much feedback as possible. We love a challenge, and our reward is the look on people’s faces when they discover our gear can take them where they couldn’t have gone without it.
HOW WE DO IT
We identify what is holding us back from having the best possible experience on our outdoor adventures and then develop product concepts for ways to remove these obstacles.
THE DESIGN PROCESS
Our product design process requires a lot of commitment and time, but we can’t imagine it any other way. We are determined to deliver exceptional products that truly remove obstacles. Through the feedback from our associates, athletes and consumers we achieve design breakthroughs and improvements that make our products perform at the highest level and put a smile on our customer’s faces.
SPECIAL DESIGN PROJECT: CUSTOM KAHTOOLA CRAMPONS FOR KYLE MAYNARD
We were given the opportunity to develop specialized crampons for Kyle Maynard, who was born with a congenital condition that stunted the growth of his arms and legs and let nothing get in the way of where he wants to go. We were honored to be part of his climb of Africa’s highest peak, Mount Kilimanjaro, and by carefully studying his mobility challenges we designed a custom set of crampons for his orthotics.
After a successful climb of Mount Kilimanjaro, the opportunity came about to collaborate on his next climb, South America’s Mount Aconcagua. As we continue to work on this project, we are excited to have the opportunity to outfit him with our latest innovations.
We worked with Orthotic Specialists to discuss the challenges the Kyle faces. This collaborative effort helps ensure that Kyle’s orthotics and crampons work in perfect harmony, allowing him to move efficiently through any terrain that he encounters.
Kyle uses orthotics on his arms and legs and requires four crampons to propel himself up icy terrain. The Crampons are designed using CAD software and are water jet cut from the same 4130 Chromoly steel used on Kahtoola’s hiking crampons. They are then hand bent, and the orthotics are fitted with a custom attachment system to ensure total security while helping Kyle achieve his goals.
To learn more about Kyle and his adventures visit kyle-maynard.com