Origin Story: Snow Peak

Yukio Yamai was a young post-war climber in love with the mountains. He eagerly climbed the dangerous Ichinokurasawa face of Mt. Tanigawa, also known as the "devil's mountain". After climbing nearly every week, he asked the skilled metal workers of Tsubame-Sanjo to execute his vision for better and better gear.

From Yukio Yamai's Archives

In 1958 at just 26, he founded his company Yamai Shoten, the predecessor to today’s Snow Peak.⁠ Beginning as an independent wholesaler carrying mainly carpenter’s tools, the original high-quality climbing equipment Yukio had personally worked with and tested gradually started to sell incredibly fast all over Japan.

A particularly big hit that outpaced the competition was Yukio’s crampons. Refined after many rounds of improvements, this masterpiece product became known as the crucible of Snow Peak’s craftsmanship. When those crampons started selling faster than anyone could imagine, Yukio’s craftsmen could not keep up making them by hand. The company went on to build a mass production system using the outstanding forging machine technology of the Tsubame-Sanjo area.

Over the last 60 years, the Snow Peak name has been passed down through the Yamai family. Yukio's son Tohru's experiences road tripping and camping in America inspired him to lead Snow Peak's evolution into a car camping brand, while Tohru's daughter Lisa introduced technical apparel, combining her love of fashion and the outdoors.

Since 2020, Lisa has led Snow Peak as president and continues to champion the brand's mission to get people to reconnect with nature.

We invite you to view our SORT selects of Snow Peak's innovative collection, now available online and in store.