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5 European Outdoor Brands You Might Not Know... But Should


by Jon Koenig September 13, 2017

If you love the outdoors, then you probably depend on a handful of outdoor brands that you know and trust.

My name is Kapil and I’m the founder of Mishmi Takin. We produce high-performance boots, and hard and soft shells, designed to withstand uniquely challenging climates like the rain and humidity found in the Eastern Himalayas.

I live and breathe technical gear, so today I’d like to introduce you to some of my favorite outdoor brands from across the pond. If you’ve never heard of these European-based companies, trust me -- you’re missing out.

Be the first of your friends to learn about the innovative gear and apparel coming out of Europe. Here are five European outdoor brands you should know.

1. AKU

From tiny workshop to major player in the outdoor industry, this Italian brand has come a long way -- and it’s no surprise to us. Their vast selection of boots cover all types of adventures, from city trekking to glacial mountaineering, and every single pair upholds the history and tradition of Italian workmanship. 

2. La Sportiva

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La Sportiva is another Italian brand that we trust in protecting our feet. In 1927, they got their start making leather boots and wooden clogs for local lumberjacks and farmers in Dolomites, Italy. The materials have changed since then, but La Sportiva continues to serve the hardworking and the adventurous with gear designed for mountaineering, trekking, skiing, running, and more. Their Innovation Centre opened in November of last year as a massive workshop where prototypes are tested and innovations are made.

3. Jottnar

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Two former Royal Marine commandos are responsible for this technical clothing brand, so you know their stuff is tough. Tommy and Steve trained for war in the Arctic circle. It was under some of the most extreme conditions on Earth that the idea for Jottnar was born.

Their mountainwear, including jackets, base layers, pants, and headwear, inspires us to face all that a snowy peak has to offer. This small startup launched in Norway in 2013, and we’ve loved seeing them grow in the past 4 years. They will undoubtedly continue to do so.

4. Icebug

If you’ve ever felt the startling slip of hitting ice on a trail run, then you’ve got to check out these shoes. Designed to get more people off the couch and into the woods, no matter what activity or speed they prefer, these extra grippy shoes keep you upright on all types of terrain -- even ice.

We love the bright colors and dependable performance of Icebug’s entire collection. The Swedish company isn’t often spotted on U.S. trails, but we have no doubt Icebugs will creep into the closets of more and more outdoor enthusiasts as the company continues to grow.

5. Helly Hansen

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This well-established brand has been keeping people dry for 140 years. Sea captain Helly Hansen and his wife first launched their waterproof jackets and trousers in Norway, and the company has evolved to help all types of people, from ski resort guides to sailors, stay dry and warm. Safety is a top priority for Helly Hansen. They understand the risks (and the rewards) of facing harsh elements.

In 2016, Helly Hansen released their most award-winning jacket ever. In keeping with a tradition of groundbreaking gear, the “ultimate freeride jacket” combines Helly Tech® Professional fabric with breathability and a temperature regulating system. This jacket is changing the game for serious skiers.

Keep your eye on the outdoor industry in Europe as these and many other brands continue to innovate in the outdoor space. They inspire us to do the same here at Mishmi Takin, where we continue to merge high performance technology with style that keeps you dry, from humid mountain slopes to wet city streets.




Jon Koenig
Jon Koenig

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