Founder - Carol McDermott

Carol McDermott is a New Zealander now living in France. Carol is an alpinist with extensive experience stretching from New Zealand’s Southern Alps to the Andes, the Himalaya, the Caucasus, the Karakorum, Patagonia and the European Alps. His most memorable ascents include Shivling and Bhagarathi III in the Gangotri (India), Yerupaja (Cordillera Huayhuash, Peru), Ama Dablam (solo, Khumbu region of Nepal) and high, but unsuccessful, attempts on Latok 1’s still unclimbed North Ridge (Karakorum) and the Casarotto Pillar on Fitzroy (Patagonia). He has also climbed rock, both sport and traditional routes, throughout the UK, France, Switzerland, Spain, Italy and Czechoslovakia (as it was in those days). In fact, he climbed a lot until abject poverty forced him to seek a better-funded career.

Educated in New Zealand, Carol gained a degree in Chemicals & Materials Engineering from Auckland University. He worked for Unilever and ICI in New Zealand before starting his climbing travels. In the mid-1990s, he joined Berghaus as a junior rucksack product manager. After four years, redundancy saw him join Vango for a brief period before leaving to start his own business, Outdoor Design Logistics Ltd (which owns Lightwave and sister brand crux).

Carol is married to Karen Williams, a professional translator specialising in art, whom he met in Namche Bazaar in Nepal. They have two children – a son, Ariel, and a daughter, India – and a Hovawart dog.