The ReddyYeti Podcast EP 9: Kush Climbing - From Dirtbagging to CUSTOM HEMP & RECYCLED CRASH PADS - Founder KIM & KYLE VINES Sharing their Story

Kush Climbing

Looking for a crash pad that is sustainability made and will sustain your life on the wall?

 

Why not get a crash pad that is just as committed to helping to save the planet as it is to saving you a trip to the hospital

 

More about the episode...

Josh sits down with Kush Climbing co-founders Kyle and Kim Vines. Kush Climbing is a company that makes crash pads, Duffel bags and fanny packs/chalk buckets, but where they stand out is in their incredible commitment to sustainability and offering the option to customize the design of your crash pad. Kush Climbing crash pads are made from hemp, and donate 2% of their sales to nonprofits to give back to nature and the community that both help support this startup. After an incredibly successful Kickstarter we are extremely excited to have the chance to find out more about a company that has gained an incredible traction in a short amount of time.


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Kush Climbing Highlights: 
 

Time Stamps
 

  • How did you guys get started with Kush Climbing [01:26]

    • “It started on a climbing road trip in California, we had actually won a contest... I got the email so I knew I was the grand prize winner, which gave us a VW Euro van to travel around California with and we decided to turn that into a climbing trip…”

    • “On the way back we had a really long drive so instead of going to sleep we decided to write down some business ideas…”

  • Do you guys have a background in climbing how long have you guys been climbing for? [04:05]

    • “We’ve been climbing for a little over 5 and a half years. We actually discovered it travelling across Europe…”

  • How did you develop Kush Climbing crash pads to where they are now? [09:24]

    • “We had got with one of our friends who taught us how to climb… he has an industrial sewing machine and we came to him to ask for his help putting together our first prototype…”

  • Where did the name Kush Climbing come from? [13:06]

    • “We wanted to use something sustainable, we decided on hemp as the landing zone fabric...so we started playing with hemp and cannabis words...but Kush starting with a ‘K’, Kim and Kyle and the alliteration Kush crash pads felt really nice…”

  • What makes Kush Climbing crash pads stand apart from other crash pads? [14:23]

    • “We kind of came at it from a different angle, one being sustainability … We don’t have any preconceived notions of material costs and what standards are. We know that we want it to be durable and we know that we want it to be sustainable.”

  • What is your commitment to sustainability? [17:01]

    • We give to two different causes. We give 1% for environmental causes the other 1% we give to social causes.. The first one that we’re going to give to is Leave no Trace. We chose them because they’re apart of One percent of the planet...The other one is Paradox Sports … Paradox takes people with disabilities and gets them outside, finding something that they’re passionate about…”

  • What sort of culture exists within Kush Climbing? [19:22]

    • It’s just me (Kim) and Kyle right now and we live in our RV. We are full on dirtbag, we have our own shop space but we live out of our RV 100%... I think our culture is ‘get things done’ and Kyle and I, being married we definitely have a different dynamic to the relationship but, I feel like we work well together in stressful situations…”

  • Has anyone mentored you to help you get to where you are now? [23:55]

    • “We have a couple...one mentor has been Jake. He’s the founder of Ethnotek bags. They are direct trade, it’s really cool, they go out all over the world and find artisans who make textiles, then buy the textiles directly from the artisans.”

  • What would you say has been the hardest part about starting Kush Climbing? [28:27]

    • “Probably sourcing materials. It’s been tough finding eco friendly materials… being able to have the cash to purchase materials, that’s why we moved into the RV…”

  • What was it like running a successful Kickstarter? [30:30]

    • We’ve been wanting to do a Kickstarter for a while and it’s just really been at the point where we finally got all the people together, manufacturing, and suppliers…

  • What is your biggest fear and how to do you manage it? [35:20]

    • “The biggest fear would be letting people down, and not fulfilling promises we put out there. It’s easy to overpromise, we get really excited about our stuff…”

  • What advice would you give someone who wanted to start a business in the outdoor sport industry? [38:27]

    • “The biggest thing for us is passion. Be Passionate, be part of the community... It’s our responsibility to create our life's work and something we are passionate about…”

  • Where do you see Kush Climbing headed into the future? [39:44]

    • “I think this year rolling out the production and fulfilling the Kickstarter orders...in five years we’d like to scale up and be in gyms across the United States, and we also have some gyms interested in in Japan…”

  • How did you go from louisiana to Colorado? [41:47]

    • “Pretty much when we were in Europe discovering climbing… I think one of the things that got me is you can just pick raspberries or blueberries and eat them along the trail...we didn’t get to really experience that much in Louisiana…”

  • What has been the best part about running Kush Climbing [43:26]

    • The best part has been not dreading work...it’s creating something from scratch and watching it grow. Just being excited about what we're doing every day and getting everyone else excited…”