Our Heritage

9 mins

“I thought if I could provide products for the mountaineering community, then I could establish the brand”

– Bruce McIntyre, Founder, Macpac

From Bruce McIntyre’s garage, to a global adventure identity, our journey has been one of creation and innovation.


“We came up with this very first, New Zealand designed internal frame pack. The Torre Egger. That to me, was the real start of Macpac.” Bruce McIntyre

In 1973, Bruce McIntyre started making backpacks from his parents’ garage in Christchurch. The mission was simple: create gear that would last and could handle the rugged terrain of New Zealand’s South Island. He was determined to design something better than the old gear that “hurt like hell.” A visit from a group of mountaineers looking for a pack for their expedition to Patagonia was – in his mind – the true start of Macpac.

Today we’re proud to retain the same design aesthetic across all our products,

“No bells and whistles but the sort of features that we have, are the meaningful features.” Gavin Davidson, Head of Design, Macpac.

But product wouldn’t be anything without a dedicated and committed community to make sure the gear works! Since the early days, we’ve worked closely with a team of athletes and outdoor enthusiasts who live for the outdoors. This partnership provides us with rigorous in-field testing, and a constant stream of feedback from the world’s best adventurers.


IFMGA-certified mountain guide, former ski and adventure racer, Anna Keeling first joined the Macpac family after winning the Raid Gauloises Adventure Race in 1989.

“Macpac gave us a ton of gear that had been modified to be lightweight. We won the event. It was a new thing and very exciting at the time.”

In 2019, Anna re-joined the Macpac family. We’re so lucky to have someone with her expertise and passion on the team. She chats to us about her journey, the sport of mountaineering, and adventuring with a family. Read more about Anna, here.


“Make the best gear, and inspire people to get outside.”

It’s been our mission since we started. We believe in quality. We believe in sustainability. We believe in the outdoors and its ability to make anyone’s life better, whatever your adventure.

“The idea was that you could travel all over the planet with a Macpac piece. It could take you anywhere. It wasn’t just for fine weather, or just for extreme conditions. It works everywhere.” Bruce McIntyre, Found of Macpac.

Learn about our focus on a durable product design and the collaboration with designer, Bruno Harding.