Sponsor Spotlight- Granite Gear
This issue of the Gazette's "Sponsor Spotlight" features Rob Coughlin, VP of Sales and Marketing for Granite Gear, one of ALDHA-West’s sponsoring gear companies. We asked Rob a few questions about Granite Gear so that we can get to know them better. If you have any additional questions for Rob, please leave a comment.
Please give a brief description of your company. What products do you sell? How did you decide which products to specialize in? How long have you been doing this?
“Granite Gear is a 31-year-old Outdoor Gear company that currently specializes in lightweight Multi-daypacks and pack accessories. We identified a need for lightweight packing solutions in the early 2000’s whilst spending time with thru hikers at events across the US. Through years of development and testing, we feel that we’ve found the ‘sweet spot’ of lightweight and cost versus durability.”
Who do you see as your market? How do you reach these folks?
“Our core market is the trekkers on the world’s great long trails. Reaching these consumers can be a tricky one in today’s digital age. Many hikers hit our trails to get away both physically and digitally. Thus, we need to physically have a presence at events both on and off the trails. In addition to the hours we spend out hiking our trails, we sponsor and attend events like Pacific Crest Trail Days where we interact with current and future hikers. At Granite Gear, we know that if we can get a GG pack on your back, you’ll be sold on our solutions. “
Does your company give back to the trails? What does your company do to promote trails and sustainable use of them?
“Giving back to the trails is one of Granite Gears core missions. While we donate finically we also sponsor sections of trails for maintenance, one of our prouder recent programs we have been affiliated with is “Packing It Out.” “Packing It Out” was started in 2015 when 3 hikers called Cap, Spice and Goose packed out 1100 pounds of trash off the Appalachian Trail. Cap and Spice followed this up by packing out almost 800 pounds off the PCT in 2016. Now, in 2017, we’ve formed the “Granite Gears Groundskeepers” movement. The program consists of 16 hikers across numerous long trails across The US. The “Groundskeepers” are carrying the “Packing It Out” torch by picking up trash off the great long trails. Currently, we’ve removed over 600 pounds of trash off trails this season. You can check out their progress here: http://www.granitegear.com/discover/the-grounds-keepers.”
“Bourbon. It packs lighter.”
“George Crosby Manitou Section of The Superior Hiking Trail. Tough hike through the woods with breathtaking views of the inland sea.”
Where will you go on your next vacation?
“The Boundary Waters Canoe Area. If you haven’t been, you must go.”
Is there anything about your company that you would like to talk about that we haven’t covered yet?
“Granite Gear is headquartered in Two Harbors MN. Our facility sits adjacent to The Superior Hiking Trail and only miles from The Boundary Waters Canoe Area. We continue to make the Portage Packs and Accessories found in almost every canoe in Americas most visited wildness area.”
950 Technology Way
Libertyville, IL 60048