The North Face is doing its part to make the art of climbing accessible to more people.
The California-based outerwear brand today will launch a global brand campaign centering around walls. The tag line — “Walls aren’t meant to divide us, they unite us” — is intended to bring the climbers’ inclusive ethos to the masses.
“The North Face has been a passionate partner to the world’s climbing community for more than 50 years,” said Tom Herbst, global vice president of marketing for The North Face. “We see walls as a place to unite our communities through the sport of climbing — a sport that requires trust and partnership. Our climbing community is truly global and we believe that communities are stronger when inclusive. Our intent is to inspire others to think more hopefully about the type of community we all want to work and play in.”
To support the initiative, the brand will donate $1 million to the Trust for Public Land to support building public climbing walls in more communities, especially those in underserved areas, and work to make the sport more accessible to all.
“At the Trust for Public Land, our mission is to create parks and protect land for people,” said Trust for Public Land president Will Rogers. “Every park we create is an open invitation for all to enjoy, and we’re proud to say we’ve connected communities to the outdoors — and to each other — since 1972. We’re happy to partner with The North Face to make climbing more accessible to more people in neighborhoods nationwide.”
In addition, The North Face will partner with gyms and facilities worldwide on Aug. 19 to create a global day of climbing, with free climbing opportunities around the U.S. as well as in Europe, Canada, Mexico and China.
For every person who visits one of the participating gyms, The North Face will make a $5 donation, up to $50,000, to Paradox Sports, an organization committed to making climbing accessible to people with physical disabilities. Additional climbing activities with athletes will take place in New York, Shanghai and London.
To support the campaign, the brand has also created a limited-edition collection of T-shirts, sweatshirts, hats and totes.
The North Face has long supported the climbing community through its sponsorship of athletes including Alex Honnold and Ashima Shiraishi, as well as through the support of nonprofits such as USA Climbing, the Access Fund and the American Alpine Club.
The campaign will be launched on The North Face’s social media channels under the hashtag #ClimbWalls.