Ketzal's Mission Statement
- Build smart, beautiful, and lasting products that can sustain the toughest conditions.
- Support master artisans in developing parts of the Americas. Not sweatshops or child-labor overseas.
- Make our customers' lives better and easier.
What's in a name, anyway?
Ketzal (pronounced: ket-saal) is our take on the ancient Aztec word quetzalli (or quetzal in Spanish), which means beautiful or precious and is the name of the national bird of Guatemala. Wonderfully colored with a magnificent long tail of feathers, the quetzal isn't just beautiful or precious. It's also one of the few birds that dies in captivity. A true symbol of freedom. Ketzal is a hommage to one of nature's great creations and to the area of the world our company was founded in.
Ketzal Bags was founded while Miles, our founder, was driving across the world from California to Patagonia. You learn a lot about organization living in a van for two years. You also learn how few products actually are built to perform day in and day out for an adventurous lifestyle. The truth is many of the famous high-end brands no longer make their products for hardcore enthusiasts. And, let's be honest, even the best return policy isn't worth jack if you're 100 miles away from civilization.
That's why Miles decided midway through his trip to team up with the best artisans he could find to start creating innovative and tough solutions that could survive the rigors of: canyoneering in Nicaragua, off-roading in Colombia, mountain climbing in Guatemala, rafting in Honduras, or simply 3-5 times of daily use for years on end.
The Company was born later on after the demand from friends, then fellow travelers, campers, off-road enthusiasts and, eventually, strangers from the internet became overwhelming. Clearly, some likeminded people saw the need for these kind of products as well.
Since then we've sold over a 1,000 bags and different products direct to fellow adventurers like you. We even sell in a few shops across the US. All of our products are still handcrafted by a team of well-paid artisans. Each bag makes the same journey from their hands in the mountains of Guatemala or Colombia, to a pick up truck, and then an airplane where they are flown to our office in Southern California.
Our products are the best for one reason alone: they have to be. Anything else simply wouldn't survive.