If you didn’t catch it, check out “Interbike 2014 – Day 1” – I was given the opportunity to go to Las Vegas for 4 days to go to Interbike. This is an annual bike industry experience to preview the 2015 innovations, network with other people in the cycling industry and more. This blog entry is part of a series. Be sure to check in for them all!
Apparently even though Interbike was happening at the Mandalay Bay, that’s too classy to party in and everyone seemed to naturally congregate to the big, giant pyramid. Somehow we found ourselves there – and do you know how surreal it is to run into people that you know from Portland at 2:30 in the morning? So weird. Like half of Portland was partying at the Luxor, and from what I understand the other half was riding the Oregon Outback. Whole city must have been vacated this last week.
What I was really excited about for Day 2 of the event, despite already being exhausted and sore, was that Mary and I got to walk it together with Jordan and Brad – three retail sales managers. Bleary-eyed we stumbled into the show and while Mikey had some meetings to attend we were free to see what we wanted to. Mary had the same objectives in mind that I did, which was amazing and made it great for viewing things more effectively.
The night before I accosted a man walking through the Shoppes wearing a shirt with a hedgehog on it. He gave me a a business card and told me his booth number so I made an effort to go visit him in the morning. Cleary Bikes out of Sausalito, CA! I love them! They are scoot bikes and kid bikes that are real, light weight bikes. What I loved in his pitch; Andy said “If you get a 19 lb kid riding a 19 lb bike, that’s like me a 250 lb man riding a 250 lb bike.” The colors of these bikes are in non-gender specific, they have a sloping down-tube so that the kiddos can grow with them a bit. They have hand brakes and coaster brakes which makes to easy transition to adult bikes; come in 12″ balance bikes, singlespeed in 12″, 16″ and 20″. I kinda want one to bmx on! They’re freaking adorable.
I had seen these the day before, but wanted to talk about them with Mary. Detours Panniers. You have a lot of choice with your bike bags, these days. There are local makers, large companies and all that. They serve their purpose. I absolutely adore Detours. Apparently Mary does too, because she pre-empted me and said that there is already an order put in at work. I am always striving for a bike bag that I can bring into an office environment and not have it look, you know. . . like a bike bag. These are beautiful. Most of their line are waterproof, all of them are at least water-resistant (there are exposed seams and zippers on some models). They’re out of Seattle so these people know rain and weather. They have some more flowery models and some more neutral models that would be great for either guys or gals. I could totally see a couple of my guy friends carrying the Pike Place Pannier or the Rack Trunk around. I love the zipper flap that covers up the rack clips. All around, a great sturdy product!
The star of the show for all of us was really Moxie Cycling Co. This is cycling clothing made for women, by women. . . and it is gorgeous and unique. What I really hate about athletic gear is that it looks like athletic gear. Yup. This stuff is great. It looks fabulous, it’s breathable, movable. I can’t say enough about this stuff. I love the color combinations. I love the cut of all the jerseys. They have several different styles of necklines and sleeves. They don’t carry a short, but they do have a skirt and a beautiful bolero. I don’t care what anyone says – I love my shrug; and this one is 100x better. Check them out. They won’t disappoint!
This company has been around for a few years, but I like reminding people about them since they were presenting there. Spirit Cyclewear. They not only sell shorts that have this great integrated light weight skirt that you can pull down when you get done with your ride and or run but a gorgeous bamboo top with a built-in panel so you can lean forward and don’t have to worry about the girls falling out. I really want to get myself a couple of those tops. Honestly, I’m so glad that I didn’t have any money at this event or extra luggage space or else I would have come back with soooooo much extra stuff. It was hard enough with the swag that I collected for free. But these tops, I could totally see cruising into work and then going straight to my desk. Professional, but breathable, comfy – I really like the bottoms as well and have wanted to get a pair for a while now. The skirts come in a couple different lengths so if you want a mid or a knee length, you’re good to go!
I’m stoked about Tonik Cycling! Their motto is ‘Real jerseys for real women.’ I love them. Their tank tops have a really nice neckline and a great ruching that hides the tummy for those that are a little rumple conscious. I love the colors, the backside of the tank jerseys have a great scalloped reflective tape that is a nice touch without getting too lacey or girly. Matching arm warmers for all their t-shirts, a thicker fabric that is looser fit. They are so comfy and the ladies are so nice that run the company. I even scored a tank top and Mary got a jersey while talking to them! I am definitely going to be talking about them more because I wear tank tops all the time in the summer and I really needed one with jersey pockets. Check these ladies out! They’re from Whidbey Island, a mere 10 miles from my home town, I just realized, so I have an even bigger soft spot for them!
Let’s take a break from clothes for a moment and talk about bikes again. I mean it’s hard not to when we were looking at bike stuff all day. Juliana Bicycles are the cream of the crop of women’s mountain bikes. I don’t know the exact phrase; if they’re the “woman’s line” of Santa Cruz or if they just get help with the jigs or whatever, but somehow they are connected – so if they look similar, that is why. These are really, really nice bikes. If I wasn’t so terrified of uneven surfaces I’d love them more. But they’re pretty. I’d be like those people that buy jeeps or off-road utility vehicles and just drive them around town.
Terry Bicycles is a pretty well known brand for women in cycling. Some women love Terry and swear by the company and some women (like me) don’t really care for them. However, coming to Interbike and being able to see the entire product line stretched out before me. . . you changed my stubborn little Aries mind. And that’s a hard thing to do. The saddles are the the thing that I hate the most about Terry, but guess what? They have listened to complaints! Their new saddle is a more narrower, sporty cut, but still has cushion – but not like you’re gellin’ it. My major complaint is that when I am wearing a chamois and riding a super soft saddle it’s like I’m doubling up on chamois. And that’s just silly. So this firmer, narrower saddle is amazing! I never understood the wide saddles for women anyways. They always rub on the inside of my thighs causing awkward chafing (and that was both now that I am thinner and also when I weighed 100 lbs more.) Also, their clothing line. It’s very adult-like, yet fun. There are some hoodies and long-sleeve jerseys I’m in love with. I love the very modern, almost Asian cut of the collar and color palate. They have a great jacket that I WILL OWN. (Because of this week, I’m going to be re-vamping my entire winter wear by the way.) Also, their casual wear tops – love. Terry, you changed my mind. I used to hate you. I said a lot of mean things about your company and your saddles were literally the butt of many of my jokes – but you have redeemed yourself.
Mary and I had never heard of this company before, but we really loved them. Ligne 8 is an online commuter apparel shop. This is a full line of men and women’s clothing that look like real clothing that you can walk around town in or go to work, but is fully integrated for cycling. It is movable, breathable, has hidden zippered pockets and others with flaps so you don’t lose your contents. There is pleating in all right places. This is classy clothing and stuff that you don’t want to grease up in the shop. I’m mentioning them, because affordable means a lot to different people. While $100 for a skirt isn’t affordable to me, I shop at Ross and Goodwill, so. . . I’m not the best judge. For clothing that has these kinds of features and you’re going to look professional and be able to go from riding to lifestyle to riding without any difficulty; people pay for that. Of course, I have friends that wear crinolines and high heels on a daily basis too. I like these people and am keeping them in my bookmarks.
If you haven’t heard of Shebeest, you should! This company was developed by women, for women, and they have a great line of funky and unique patterns. They have some great cuts and patterns. I love the bright colors. They have a full line of plus-size women’s cycling clothing that you should check out. They have a riding halter top!! Great cut on their tank tops and a riding dress. Yes. They have a full line of bottoms, long, 3/4, shorts, mtn bike shorts, all sorts of stuff like that. I like the colors on their arm warmers. If you like t-shirts, they have some fun little sayings on their casual wear as well. They do sell it at Universal Cycles if you’re looking for it locally to try on. I don’t know why this stuff isn’t more popular. It’s really fun and regardless if you are a bright color person or a drab, you can find something you will like.
KMC Chains are top of the line. All of my bikes run them and if they don’t when the current chain dies you better believe that when it gets replaced it will be a KMC. And these people are smart. Unlike Shimano, Campy or the other components companies that will just shrug and say “It works with a 10 speed chain.” KMC does so much product testing that they often know more about other company’s products than the company knows themselves. They need to know what will be compatible with what parts, how it will function, what will fail, how long it will run before it will wear out. They have different models depending if you’re racing off or on-road, if you’re a daily commuter, track bike, fixie color matching, etc. I am super excited about this new Eco Chain they’re rolling out. This is the main carbon footprint certified of their line with an output of 614g of carbon offsets or something. I don’t know. That could be totally wrong. There are words where the shiny plastic is under the numbers, but I can’t read them and I didn’t take notes when the guy was talking to me. Also, they had salt-spray protection on some of their chains, which is super great in some of their wintery conditions where they spray the roads or even on the coast for that rust. The eco thing is big and they’re doing it to a bunch of their chains. Way to be on top of it KMC.
What about security? Abus Security Tech is coming out with some really cool stuff for 2015. When it comes to keeping your bike safe from thieves we don’t like to mess around. Well, neither does Abus. Our concerns it seems is safety first, price and weight. And Abus paid attention to that. They’re coming out with new locks! The ones with the red heads that you see, the Us go all the way through the cross bar and there are two points of contact on each side so no way to twist and break! Their chains have a magnet assist, so just sticking them together, they stick so you can lock them in awkward situations easier. There’s also another lock (not pictured) that just by putting the U into the cross-bar it partially connects with the first 2 clip points so no more fumbling to get the two pieces together. (These are my official engineering terms.) And their quality to price range makes them, dare I say, better than Kryptonite?! Plus, Abus was giving out these amazing roll-top bags, so. . . they win.
I went up to the Shower’s Pass suite and was shown something amazing. Unfortunately, I didn’t get any photos of it because I misunderstood. I was told that if they take you behind a closed door it’s secret. Apparently if it’s in a hotel suite with snacks it’s ok. But, you know what?! Shower’s Pass is coming out with base layers! Beautiful soft base layers. Two different styles. I will wear the hell out of those things. They have different stitching in the elbows, armpits and spine where you sweat the most for max breathability. I also want a rogue jacket. They’re also making breathable waterproof socks. I don’t understand them, but I want them. . . .
There was just so much there that was great and some that was meh. I wish I could talk about everything that I saw, but that would just be so many, long entries! I’m going to leave you with this photo, though. If you don’t know who these guys are, they are pretty much the fathers of mountain biking. I’ve hung out with Gary Fisher before (right), Charlie Kelly, Joe Breeze and Tom Ritchey (R-L).