Book Look: Let My People Go Surfing


Let My People Go Surfing

Written by Yvon Chouinard - Founder and owner of Patagonia Inc.

This book took me by surprise in how much I was fascinated by three parts of the larger story: the story of the boy, the story of the climber, & the story of the company Yvon created that strives to right the wrongs of a wasteful humanity. 

Some random quotes and passages:

"The more you know, the less you need. The experienced fly fisherman with only one rod, one type of fly, and the one type of line will always out fish the duffer with an entire quiver of gear and flies. I never forget Thoreau's advice: "I say beware of all enterprises that require new clothes...."

"Instead of adopting the Precautionary Principle, as have many countries, we embrace new technologies with carefree abandon, like genetically modified foods, pesticides, toxic plastics, and other chemicals.  We have an attitude of  "innocent until proven guilty", and it's then left up to the user to establish the guilt."

"One of my favorite sayings about entrepreneurship is: if you want to understand the entrepreneur, study the juvenile delinquent. The delinquent is saying with his actions, "This sucks. I'm going to do my own thing."  Since I had never wanted to be a businessman, I needed a few good reasons to be one. One thing I did not what to change, even if we go serious: Work had to be enjoyable on a daily basis. We all had to come to work on the balls of our feet and go up the stairs two steps at a time. We needed to be surrounded by friends who could dress whatever way they wanted, even barefoot. We all needed to have flextime to surf the waves when they were good, or ski the powder after a big snowstorm, or stay at home and take care of a sick child. We needed to blur that distinction between work and play and family."

"We are the last generation that can experience true wilderness."


See book on Amazon

Comments (2) -


Yvon Chouinard is business oriented. To me, this book is mostly an advertisement on why you should spend more for his clothing. He has compelling reasons. He also is very conscientious on how to market within his market. This understanding fits most all businesses with good examples for you to understand his market.  Within these parameters, I find the book interesting as Chouinard's good business practices pays off.  


Hey Dad, I tend to agree with you.

It is also interesting that he has shared his strategies to properly source organics - to any other company that wants to go that route.  And I like the fact that they will repair what they sell you.  But, I have yet to have any of their products fail yet.  

I am interested in his Ice Climbing book, so that may be next.  

Thanks for the comment!

Add comment

  Country flag

  • Comment
  • Preview