Kip Pitou - Ski sales executive

Passing Date

Augustus “Kip” Pitou III died July 8, 2021, in Laconia, New Hampshire, at age 81. He suffered a stroke in the spring of 2020 and was diagnosed with Covid19 on July 4.

Pitou, with his big sister Penny, grew up skiing a rope tow in Gilford, New Hampshire, and at nearby Belknap Mountain (now Gunstock). He graduated Laconia High School in 1959, then worked briefly in Minnesota before joining the Penny Pitou Ski School at Belknap. At six feet, four inches, he towered over the rest of the staff and was a jolly presence to his students. 

In 1962 Pitou moved to New York to work as a stock clerk at Beconta, the import and distribution firm, where his brother-in-law Egon Zimmermann was a sales rep.

At Beconta, Pitou rose to become general manager. He married Cynthia Grisham in 1966; they had two children but divorced in 1980. In that year, Beconta closed its doors following the loss of its running-shoe brand Puma. Pitou took on distribution of Beconta’s ski line, as COO of Kästle USA, a subsidiary of Austria’s Sport AG. He opened a warehouse in Clearfield, Utah, and bought a home in Park City. He married Abigail Mathes in 1989; they had one child and divorced in 2005.

In 1991, Kästle was acquired by Nordica, as part of its absorption into Benetton. Sensing the chaotic consolidation to come, Pitou joined K2 Corp. as CEO of the Pre Ski division, and then was named president of K2 Bike. In 1998 he returned to Park City, as president of the resort-marketing group Ski Utah, retiring in 2005. He returned to Gilford in 2016.