Most individuals who benefit from the open air know Patagonia as an organization which produces outside clothes. Nonetheless others could find out about Patagonia’s long-term dedication to social and environmental accountability. Whereas these could sound like advertising buzz-words, it seems they manifest themselves in methods the typical individual would by no means think about.
What most have no idea is that for greater than a decade, Patagonia has targeted their experience at offering technical outerwear for essentially the most excessive environments and athletes, to a special buyer, US Particular Operations Forces. That’s proper. Patagonia has a devoted group, targeted on supporting USSOCOM with delivering US Made/Berry Compliant technical chilly climate and fight uniforms as prime supplier to the Protecting Fight Uniform program. What’s extra, they’ve cultivated a relationship with a like minded manufacturing companion, Peckham Vocational Industries. Itself an organization based upon service to others.
I spoke with Eric Neuron, Director of Strategic Product & Army for Patagonia Works and he associated that one unintended, however essential consequence of their navy work has been a renewed give attention to the US manufacturing base. They’ve spent the final three years investing in Peckham Vocational Industries, with technical equipment and information switch from their international provide chain. Their aim is to construct the capability to provide outside attire that’s technically equal to what they produce globally.
A part of their dedication to the atmosphere is to provide sturdy items which is able to final, regardless of arduous situations, and received’t have to be changed as usually.
Even these aware of Patagonia’s PCU work often don’t understand how lengthy they’ve been supporting the navy. My relationship with the model goes again to the late 1980s, after I was assigned to third ID’s Lengthy Vary Surveillance Detachment. We had been issued thick darkish blue pile fits to keep at bay the chilly whereas in a cover web site and polypropylene lengthy underwear, full with brand on the left chest. Not lengthy after that, very shut copies of these clothes had been included within the US Military’s Prolonged Chilly Climate Clothes System. Proper all the way down to the nylon chest pocket.
All through the 90s, SOF models would problem specialised items of Patagonia clothes to be used in excessive environments. However it was not till the International Warfare On Terror that Patagonia answered the nation’s name and commenced growing complete clothes methods for SOF.
In 2004, Patagonia commenced work for a SOF buyer on an environmental clothes system which was comprised of modifications to what was already of their industrial line. Leveraging their Regulator line of interior layers, this challenge was dubbed the Army Superior Regulator System or MARS. Some clothes remained the identical as their commercially accessible counterparts however with a shade change to Alpha Inexperienced, whereas different gadgets had been barely modified with additions similar to sleeve pockets. Later, many elements of MARS had been produced in Coyote.
At across the identical time, the Program Supervisor for SOF Survival, Help and Tools Methods invited three distributors in to replace their PCU ensemble. The primary go round had been developed rapidly in-house at Natick Soldier Methods Heart, simply outdoors of Boston, with the help of renown mountaineer Mark Twight.
The opposite two distributors bowed out after deciding that they didn’t wish to lend their model names to clothes produced in home factories they’d little management over. Patagonia jumped in with each ft, refining PCU’s seven ranges regardless of being restricted to cloth applied sciences already in this system. In addition they labored tirelessly with the Skill One sew home which produced the gear, to maintain high quality excessive all through the method. Even then, Patagonia’s position with PCU didn’t leverage their design functionality.
Then, in 2009, Patagonia obtained their likelihood to take the lead on a clothes challenge for PM SSES who determined to develop a SOF Fight Uniform. This garment turned PCU Stage 9. They held a growth occasion in El Paso, Texas, together with their Skill One companion, bringing in personnel from every of the SOF elements to offer suggestions on prototypes. This was very a lot a hands-on occasion, with a number of evaluations occurring in addition to an early use of 3D laser scanning to find out sizes for the operators.
Patagonia’s Cyndi Davis was central within the growth of that garment and somebody SOCOM would proceed to show to for experience within the ensuing years. The Patagonia group refined its preliminary ideas and turned the uniform into actuality. Now, in addition they produce a jungle model of that uniform, referred to as Stage 9 HW.
However they haven’t stopped there. Most just lately, Patagonia formalized The Misplaced Arrow Undertaking, a subsidiary of Patagonia Works that’s solely targeted on their authorities contracting enterprise. Their purpose is construct special-purpose clothes and kit for excessive environments, developed particular to the necessities of the federal government person, and for compliancy in authorities contracting.
About three years in the past, what was to turn out to be The Misplaced Arrow Undertaking, determined to start out with a clear slate, envisioning a follow-on to PCU. They introduced in one in every of Patagonia’s most skilled designers, Casey Shaw, who started work on what would ultimately turn out to be the Army Alpine Recce System. It’s nonetheless referred to as MARS, however they’ve transitioned from their older Regulator expertise to new supplies with a give attention to tailor-made breathability.
Eric Neuron, sums up their efforts fairly nicely, saying, “The most recent iteration of the MARS line of chilly climate clothes has redefined the cutting-edge in home outerwear, is a paradigm shift from the established order of chilly climate layering methods, and is the fruits of The Misplaced Arrow Undertaking.”
That is the primary of a four-part sequence on the Army Alpine Recce System developed by Patagonia’s The Misplaced Arrow Undertaking. Different installments embrace an summary of the system and its design, a give attention to their manufacturing companion Peckham Industries and a deep dive into among the elements. The complete system can be on exhibition at SOF Choose throughout SOFIC.
You may skip to the tip and go away a response. Pinging is presently not allowed.