Outdoor enthusiasts may be familiar with high-quality outdoor brand Snow Peak. Its minimalist designs and robust materials are not only good for camping trips, they’re pleasing on the eye too.
From its early days manufacturing mountaineering equipment, Snow Peak has always embraced the kind of dual attention to form and function that we love here at zen minded. Its latest series of products follow in that fashion and have become modern collectibles.
From Bestsellers to Brilliant New Pieces
We’ve hand-picked some of our favourite Snow Peak products for the zen minded store. The brand’s ethos of making user-friendly products that are built to last and good for the planet make them one of our go-to brands.
But how did this company – unknown outside Japan for years – make its mark on the international stage?
A Brand Born Out of Personal Necessity
The simple pleasures of sitting around a campfire with friends and driving through vast desert landscapes in an old Chevrolet spoke to his soul.
It all started with a love of the great outdoors. Yukio Yamai, Snow Peak’s founder, was an accomplished mountaineer. He would frequent Mount Tanigawa, one of Japan’s most challenging climbs and the inspiration behind Snow Peak’s name.
Yukio’s dissatisfaction with the availability of mountaineering equipment motivated him to create his own. He lived in Tsubame-Sanjo, a city known for its highly skilled metal artisans, so he was well placed to produce superior quality gear. In 1958, Snow Peak was born.
Meanwhile, the entrepreneur’s son, Tohru, had inherited his love of nature. During his last year of university, he travelled to the US. The simple pleasures of sitting around a campfire with friends and driving through vast desert landscapes in an old Chevrolet spoke to his soul. While his father was drawn to the majesty of nature and thrill of scaling a precipice, Tohru sought comfort and a sense of belonging from his natural surroundings.
When Tohru moved home and joined his father’s company he had a different vision for Snow Peak: camping. His time in America had opened him up to a new lifestyle where people could load up their cars and head into the wilderness on camping trips.
For Tohru, there was no greater luxury than spending time in nature. He began to focus on products that took the hassle out of camping. He used high-quality materials to create weather-proof tents that could be assembled quickly without trenches. He wanted to make camping easy for everyone, not just young backpackers and experienced hikers.
Snow Peak started to focus on outdoor dining, which had traditionally been military by design. It moved the concept away from survival and towards comfort and pleasure. With Tohru at the helm, the brand created products to enhance human connections, as well as a connection with nature. The Cast Iron Duo Pot Set is an example of the brand’s cookware that can be used year-round while camping or at home.
The Snow Peak Way: An Event and a Philosophy
When Yukio passed away in 1992, Tohru took over Snow Peak’s presidency. In 1998, the company launched a new annual event called Snow Peak Way. The aim was to foster a close-knit community that shared a love of the outdoors.
The Snow Peak Way was originally a mission statement. Essentially it highlighted the company’s aim to help people achieve a nature-oriented lifestyle and have a positive impact on the planet. The team would listen to customers and work towards creating products from a user’s point of view.
Every single item from the brand’s Titanium line is made in Sanjo. It is Japan’s metalwork capital and renowned for manufacturing titanium – a notoriously difficult metal to work with.
Snow Peak Way events are now held in more than 13 campsites across Japan, the US, Taiwan and Korea. It’s become an essential part of Snow Peak’s success since it is completely focused on making users happy. And users are happy. The company continued to evolve and has now achieved international recognition.
Snow Peak’s headquarters are in the Japanese city of Sanjo, close to the mountains that inspired its conception. Every single item from the brand’s Titanium line is made in Sanjo. It is Japan’s metalwork capital and renowned for manufacturing titanium – a notoriously difficult metal to work with. Titanium doesn’t flatten easily, but the region’s skilled metalworkers have perfected the manufacturing process. Through decades of experience, a meticulous eye for detail and intuition, these master craftsmen can detect even the smallest defects and remedy them to produce the high-performance products Snow Peak devotees have come to expect. These compact and ultralight titanium products helped Snow Peak become a big name in the backpacking industry.
A Consistent Focus on Sustainability
Snow Peak’s ethos has always centred around restorative outdoor experiences that “create opportunities to reconnect with each other and the natural world”. But without care in manufacturing and consumerism, there would be no natural world. In line with the brand’s commitment to “having a positive impact on the planet”, Snow Peak has always been proactive in protecting the earth.
Snow Peak’s best-selling sustainable products include its Wabuki travel chopsticks and the ever-popular lightweight Titanium Spork. These items are the perfect alternative to disposable cutlery for backpackers who want to prevent waste.
The ‘Take! Bamboo Folding Chair’ is another innovative product, built with sustainability in mind. Bamboo is a fast-growing plant, and this chair was created to use the material responsibly and to protect forest wood resources. The chair’s removable cotton canvas is washable to keep it as clean and fresh as the day you bought it.
We especially admire the pride the brand takes in maintaining the quality of its products, which come with a lifetime product guarantee. These durable items can be reused over and over again year-round in the most challenging conditions. This saves you money and the hassle of frequently buying replacement items. It also provides peace of mind that you’re doing your part to protect the planet while using a stylish piece of gear.
Snow Peak’s expertly crafted, durable lifestyle items perfectly complement zen minded’s passion for minimalism, beauty and clarity of purpose. While you’re here, why not take a look at our carefully curated Snow Peak collection?