100-Year Gear: Classic, Stalwart Outdoors Brands

Cutting-edge gear comes and goes. A group of centurion equipment-makers have shown staying power for 100 years or more in the outdoors world.

Classic outdoors gear brands

Two years ago, at an outdoor-industry trade show, the Century Club was established to recognize “brands in the outdoor market that have withstood the test of time for 100 years or more.”

The project, launched in partnership with Stormy Kromer, included a time capsule and memorabilia. It recognized companies founded in 1916 or prior.

Boots by G.H. Bass & Co.

Boots by G.H. Bass & Co.

We used the list to highlight various 100-year-old outdoor brands in specific categories, including outdoors lifestyle brand G.H. Bass & Co., which was founded in 1876. The Maine brand launched with sturdy leather footwear and a straightforward slogan: “To make the best possible shoe for the purpose in which it will be used.”

GH Bass apparel

Full G.H. Bass & Co. kit
GH Bass WWII mountain division

U.S. Army’s 10th Mountain Division – wearing G.H. Bass & Co.’s cold weather boots

The brand has an impressive history, including designing the official aviation boot for the U.S. Army in 1918, outfitting a major Alaskan-Yukon expedition in 1934, and suppling the storied U.S. Army’s 10th Mountain Division during WWII.

Today, the company’s products, like its iconic Weejuns shoes, are still bench-crafted and hand-stitched. Check out G.H. Bass & Co. and 12 additional classic brands in other outdoor categories.


100-Year Gear: Stalwart Outdoors Brands

1818: GRIVEL (mountaineering equipment)

1856: THE ORVIS COMPANY (fly fishing, hunting, sporting goods)

1876: G.H. Bass & Co. (boots, Weejuns, bags, apparel)

1877: HELLY HANSEN (outerwear, technical apparel)

1882: DULUTH PACK (canoe, ‘portage’ packs, day packs)

1892: PRIMUS (camp stoves)

1898: JELLY BELLY CANDY COMPANY (electrolyte candy)

1898: DEUTER (packs)

1903: STORMY KROMER (caps)

1905: WIGWAM (socks)

1906: MADSHUS (ski gear)

1906: TUBB’S SNOWSHOES (snowshoes)

1913: STANLEY (camping gear, cookware, insulated bottles)

Timeline at Deuter packs HQ

Timeline at Deuter packs HQ

– This post was sponsored by G.H. Bass & Co..

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