Women like Kit DeLaures and Dawa Yangzum Sherpa have paved the way. They’ve stood on summits and pushed the limits of alpinism – and done it all in equipment that wasn’t designed for them. Introducing the new Women’s Himalayan Suit from The North Face, the most technically advanced suit ever made.
Designed by a team of athletes, women designers, and product experts, the suit has been overhauled to integrate unbeatable technologies with the needs of these adventures for comfort and hardworking reliability.
“Leveraging our very best technologies, materials and construction techniques with insights gained from decades of supporting the world’s leading athletes in the big mountains, The North Face’s Women’s Himalayan Suit empowers the next generation of female explorers to achieve their wildest dreams and look dang good doing it,” said Laura Akita, Category Manager for The North Face.
The North Face athlete Dawa Yangzum Sherpa is just one of the women who continue to pave the way on expeditions. After growing up in a Himalayan village with no electricity or running water, but by age 9, she knew she would someday summit Mount Everest. She accomplished her dream at age 21, then went on to become the first Nepali woman, and one of just over 100 women worldwide, to earn mountaineering’s most elite title—International Federation of Mountain Guides Associations certification.
Since then, Dawa has become an integral part of countless expeditions, and an integral part of developing the new suit. Driving change to ensure the kit matches her incredible level of skill and determination:
She said: “My goal was just to climb Mt. Everest one time, and that was my big dream. One time and that’s it, but that didn’t happen. It was just the start of my career. I went back again guiding on Everest wearing the men’s small suit. I was very, very uncomfortable.”
Dawa worked alongside the women lead design and product team to overhaul the design, fit and performance. A sizing refresh is just the start of the update with the introduction of a suspender system with improved fit and integrated storage that was inspired by the running vests and constructed to offer a better fit for women.
The team also worked with insulation mapping and adjusted baffle shaping to provide targeted warmth specifically shaped for a woman’s body. A reduced front-zip length was also integrated for less bulk and a rear zip introduced for streamlined access in and out.
“Designing The North Face’s first Women’s Himalayan Suit has been a labor of love and commitment to women athletes around the world,” said Erica Cottrell, Senior Design Manager at The North Face. “Years in the making, we worked tirelessly with our women athletes to bring to life the most advanced and innovative suit for women alpinists.”
The suit is also coupled with the technical need for expeditions at altitude such as the FUTURELIGHT™ outer with Spectra® ripstop in the lower arms, seat and lower legs is both waterproof and abrasion resistant, providing protection from brushes with rocks and pointy mountain tools. The suit is an excellent combination of multiple innovations coming together for an unbeatable product.
Comfort, warmth and protection are key with the Himalayan Suit, which features:
- FutureLight with SPECTRA® Ripstop Panels: Reinforced lower arm, seat and lower leg panels for targeted weather protection and abrasion resistance.
- PRODOWN™ Insulation: 900-fill power down with DWR coating for exceptional loft and heat-retention even when wet.
- CloudDown: Delivering maximum warmth at minimal weight, discontinuous baffles minimize cold spots while offset shell and lining sizes allow for maximum thermal efficiency.
- Asymmetrical Front Zip: Offset zip placement to protect against oxygen mark condensation and freezing.
- FLASHDRY™ Internal Vest: Inspired by a traditional run vest, this feature delivers a self-equalizing suspended vest with storage for supplies and side-release buckles for comfortable fit.
- Drop Seat: Full rainbow drop seat with multiple zip pulls for easy access and venting.
- Oxygen Mask-Compatible Hood: Fully adjustable for seamless compatibility with helmets and oxygen masks.
- Storm Sealed Sleeves: Stretch-knit wrist gaiters with thumb loops eliminate drafts and keep wind and snow out.
- Boot Integration: Double-layer lower leg construction allows the outer shell to fit over boots for added snow protection.
- Glove-Compatible Zip Pulls: Highly durable zip pulls cold tested to withstand extremely low temperatures.
The Women’s Himalayan suit is available to buy at www.thenorthface.com. To keep up to date on future launches, follow @thenorthfaceuk on Instagram and @thenorthface on Facebook.