Founded by Yvon Chouinard in 1974, Patagonia got its start as a small company specializing in tools for climbers. Chouinard developed his love for climbing when, as a 14-year-old, he joined the Southern California Falconry Club, which trained hawks and falcons for hunting. One of ... Read More the group's leaders taught him how to rappel down cliffs to reach falcon aeries. He later began climbing and rappelling for sport. On a particularly difficult climb at Yosemite, he was inspired to design and sell his own hardware -- and that was the beginning of Patagonia. The company today carries climbing gear and clothes, as well as gear for skiing, snowboarding, surfing, fly fishing, and trail running. For travelers and campers, Patagonia carries a number of backpacks and packs large enough to fit all the necessities while going easy on your back. Duffel bags and courier bags are also favorite picks among Patagonia's customers. The Lightweight Travel Hip Pack, which situates itself around the waist, has securely zippered compartments to keep valuables safe. Patagonia is also known for its high-end casual clothing, such as the Capilene 3 Midweight Zip Neck shirt, which is a long-underwear-type base layer for cold weather; it also works as a pullover in between seasons.