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First Ascent

Member Highlight : First Ascent

Monday 27th February 2017

Founded 29 years ago by Chris Watts and Siobhan Sheridan, First Ascent has long been an important part of the UK Outdoor Trade Scene. Chris and Siobhan have now sold up and retired to ride their bikes even more! First Ascent however will continue with renewed energy as the reins have been taken up by another industry lifer and passionate outdoor enthusiast Jason Myers. 

Jason is well known on the rock climbing scene and in the outdoor trade. 

Back in the day he was at the forefront of sport climbing both in Europe and the UK with many cutting-edge ascents to his name. He then moved onto the more focused challenges of bouldering, pioneering new areas and classic problems, many of which are still considered significant challenges. Beyond his favourite areas of the Peak and Yorkshire, Jason has climbed extensively in Scotland and the Alps, surfed around the world, and has been seen to ride a bike.

In his professional life, Jason has worked for some of the finest brands in outdoor equipment - recently at Wild Country, formerly with Boreal and was central in setting up The Foundry Climbing Centre in Sheffield. In fact, he began his career on the distribution side with First Ascent being Sales Manager on the equipment side of the business.

“I’m so happy to be back at First Ascent and working in the Outdoor Trade. You could say I began my professional career here, so to be back as owner, working with such great people, brands and product is a dream come true. Yes, the trade has changed hugely since I started, but there are still so many opportunities out there. I’ve come full circle and can’t wait to get stuck in!"

“First Ascent will continue to focus on equipment – technical product, rock climbing gear and essentials. I see First Ascent’s role as being to find and bring interesting product to market - I’m a bit of a gear freak, so I want to find products that really work and improve people’s outdoor experience, products which are unique and interesting. I’m determined that we will remain true to the fundamentals of good business – excellent service, great product and enjoyable close working relationships”.

First Ascent brand portfolio is indeed diverse yet focussed, addressing niches in the market in way other brands simply cannot;

  • Boreas - beautiful, functional, hardwearing multi-sport packs and travel gear, as versatile as the enthusiasts who use it.
  • Cocoon : Renowned by travellers around the world, Cocoon’s “sleep gear for adventurers” is now complimented by a new range of travel gear.
  • Dachstein : Coming from a long Austrian Alpine heritage, Dachstein looks to the future with innovative designs and use of materials. Unique Steps – be ready to be surprised!
  • Komperdell :  Unique in offering a 3 years “no questions asked” service warranty, Komperdell’s range spans trekking and ski with a high quality range second to none.
  • Luci Lights : The Little Light that Empowers.
  • These little lights do big things - every Luci Light is solar powered, lightweight, waterproof, super bright and never needs batteries.
  • Nalgene : The definitive range of outdoor and travellers’ water bottles and storage solutions.
  • Ocun : The Czech climbing brand. Great gear, great value.
  • Spiroll : Innovative rope protection – like a helmet for your rope!
  • Stormsure : No repair too tough! Stormsure’s unique adhesive formulation makes bombproof repairs, even in the field.