Mountain Safety Research

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Mountain Safety Research, Inc.
Type Subsidiary of Cascade Designs
Industry sporting goods and outdoor gear
Founded 1969
Headquarters Seattle, Washington, USA
Key people Larry Penberthy, Founder

Mountain Safety Research, or MSR, is an American corporation founded in 1969 by Larry Penberthy, located in Seattle, Washington and owned by Cascade Designs.

In 1973 Penberthy developed the MSR Model 9 camp stove, a design which was relatively efficient in cold weather.[1] He separated the stove burner from then small fuel tanks, and then pressurized auxiliary fuel bottles as the tank, and used a better wind screen. He also designed an ice axe that was supposed to dig into the ice better and stop a slide. Penberthy also introduced metal-shafted ice axes; metal axes have replaced earlier wooden-shaft designs.[2]

Penberthy produced a newsletter and experimented on outdoor gear in the Pacific Northwest. He developed the Penberthy crampon wrap as a way to prevent wet snow from balling up under crampons and advocated testing of mountaineering and bicycle helmets. Penberthy tested the wind-proofing of tents on top of cars on highways and the addition of arm-pit vents and face masks integral to jackets.

MSR produces camping, hiking and mountaineering equipment such as portable stoves, water filters and tents, specialising in lightweight equipment. MSR designed and distributes snowshoes made of composite materials, lighter than earlier designs.

The company was acquired by REI in 1981.[2] In 2000, MSR merged with Edgeworks, the manufacturer of Moss, Walrus and Armadillo tents. Shortly afterwards these brands were discontinued and all tents by the company sold as MSR. In August 2001 MSR was acquired by Cascade Designs.

MSR WindPro portable stove with heat reflector and wind shield
An MSR propane/isobutane fuel canister and Snow Peak Giga Power portable stove in operation


  1. ^ "Timeline". MSR corporate website. Archived from the original on January 31, 2008. Retrieved August 4, 2008. 
  2. ^ a b Mapes, Lynda V. (December 4, 2001). "Inventor, mountaineer Larry Penberthy dies". The Seattle Times. Retrieved August 4, 2008. 

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