Discovering new companies that are on their way to greatness is one of the reasons we love going to Outdoor Retailer. It never seems to fail that we find a company or product that gets us excited and that we know is going to be a major success, and the most recent show was no exception. One of the rising stars we were able to meet with this month was Forsake, a footwear company making shoes for outdoor activities. Doesn’t sound all that interesting, until you understand what they are all about: creating shoes that are geared toward the young adventurers that are flooding into the outdoors. Whether they be hikers, snowboarders, fisherman, or urban warriors, Forsake’s goal is to create a shoe that will feel just as much at home during outdoor exploration or chilling with friends, mowing the lawn or hiking the trail.
Their story is pretty cool, too. The founders were both college students, spending the snow season working at ski resorts in Montana and Utah. During their winter work-cations, Sam and Jake noticed that snowboarders were trudging through the snow in their soggy skate shoes, rather than wear much less fashionable footwear that would keep their feet dry. In 2009, the two college juniors entered a competition to see who could come up with the best business plan, pitching their idea for technical footwear that matched the style of the day. Unfortunately, due to the fact that they were the only entry, the competition was cancelled. Despite not winning the contest, it started the ball rolling for Sam and Jake. A professor passed the idea on to a friend that had history in the footwear industry, and things started to fall into place.
Since then, the Forsake brand (which is a mash-up of the phrase “For Sam and Jake”) has slowly become reality. Due to launch at the beginning of next year, there will be three models of men’s boots, all of which stay true to the goal of creating versatile all-weather shoes that young outdoor enthusiasts can wear whenever and wherever. By blending casual with functional, waterproof with hater-proof (maybe I should trademark that…), Forsake has created a style that is both familiar and unique. With three different models – Hiker, Pilot, and Thurston – everyone should find something to love. Plus, no more getting to the resort with soggy boots, or having to stow a more stylish pair of shoes with your outdoor gear. Instead, this line of boots bridges the gap between the outdoors and urban/suburban living without hassle or compromise.
While we have yet to try these shoes out, we are eagerly anticipating sharing our thoughts on how they perform before the shoes are available. Last we heard (which was at the beginning of the month), they are planning on taking preorders soon, and those people will get their boots before they hit shelves early next year. Seriously, if you are a young (or young at heart) adventurer or know someone who is, you need to take a look at the Forsake website as soon as possible. We are hoping to have a full review for you to read about at least a month or two before these boots are available (so you’ll know if they’re as good as they appear to be), so keep checking this space. (Did I mention that Jake is an awesome guy that is busting his butt to fulfill his dreams and keep snowboarders from getting frostbite before they even hit the slopes? That’s just awesome!)