Tosch is from Bend, OR and has an unfortunate affliction of long-term ADD which results in a wide variety of random and mediocre skillz.
Far Left: Copyright John Blake Graham
In 2011, Tosch was “attending” school in Bozeman, Montana and “studying” mechanical engineering. More importantly, Tosch had registered for a ski mountaineering race at Bridger Bowl but did not have an appropriate skimo pack, nor the appropriate amount of money to buy one. So, he dusted off the old Kenmore sewing machine, designed and drafted a pattern, and stitched together a sketchy-looking pack. It was a massive success.
Why backpacks you ask? At the age of 13, our gear junkie founder owned more packs than he was old. Yet he always gravitated to the light and simple ones. Much later (2011), during a single-day five peak traverse of the Three Sisters, Broken Top, and Bachelor, frustration finally hit home with his adequately light and simple packs with inadequate features.
The summer of 2012 brought Tosch back to his hometown of Bend, OR with a decision: stay in school, or sew backpacks. While packrafting the middle fork of the Salmon, he read a book called “The Alchemist” by Paulo Coelho and subsequently dropped out of school. Tosch never liked school anyway.
The result? Free Range Equipment - simple sport-specific backpacks for light and fast adventure in the mountains. Made in the US, at our pactory in Bend, OR.
Zoë is the older sister to Tosch. Despite a similar case of sports-ADD (it must be genetic?), Zoë pursued a career in nordic skiing for about 10 years. Summer of 2014, she stopped skiing to become the CFO or Chief Fun Officer at Free Range Equipment.
When pictures and words don’t do justice:
You can (and should) stay updated on Zoë’s life by following doingzoethings.tumblr.com.
Team building exercises for the leadership team at FRE.