Innovation is Our Obsession, People Are Our Passion
Above all, our story is about people. And while that may sound odd coming from a company selling outdoor gear, everyone on our team, whether at our Flagstaff headquarters, or around the world, comes together with the goal of helping others. That commitment starts, as the company did more than two decades ago, with innovative gear...and a life changing climbing accident.
The Fall That Started It All
The root of Kahtoola’s commitment to people goes all the way back to 1993 when Owner and Founder, Danny Giovale, found himself descending with his brother off of the Graffer Route on Campanile Basso—a spire that stands over 1000 feet tall in the Italian Dolomites. As the two were making their way down a steep gully on foot, Danny’s climbing shoes slid on the frozen surface, and he suddenly found himself careening 200m down an icy slope.
The next few moments would impact Danny for the rest of his life. As he was falling, time seemed to stand still and Danny thought about how his death might impact his loved ones and friends. He came to a stop shaken but alive, and it was clearer to him than ever that life is a gift worth celebrating.