Taking on Interbike - The Event

With our introduction, or rather reintroduction to Reno well underway, the Outdoor Demo portion of Interbike was coming up quickly and the next morning it was time to get on the busses and head up to NorthStar Resort in California. When Interbike was held in Las Vegas, the Outdoor Demo was always held at Bootleg Canyon in Henderson, Nevada, close enough to Hoover Dam that you could see Lake Mead from several points along the trail. Bootleg Canyon has some great trails, that appeal to a very particular kind of rider, the kind who love off-camber (meaning the trail slopes down instead of into the hill), gravelly, rocky, unpleasant trails. If that's not your thing, well, you get the idea. In contrast, NorthStar was a VERY welcome change of pace with bike lifts and glorious trails to ride on.

After the hour or so drive, and the instant joy of being on the mountain, we got busy doing what we came for. Demoing the latest bikes and having fun. The Outdoor Demo space was cramped with a chronic shortage of bikes to go around, but once we secured rides and hit the trails, it was GLORIOUS. Two days of riding was nowhere near enough and we were pining for more, but it was time for the main show at the convention center. On the way back to Reno, due to a crash on the main route, our shuttle rerouted past Lake Tahoe making that last day in the mountains that much sweeter.

Arriving at the show, at first glance, the impression was that the rumors within the industry of it going to be a ghost town after the move from Las Vegas appeared to be false. While it wasn't a ghost town, a lot of the key brands we've come to expect over the years had a smaller presence, or worse, none at all, and in their place were mass-market Asian companies that quickly started to blend together. It wasn't ALL bad, but for veteran attendees who'd been attending the show since its heyday, it was clear that while a huge effort had been made, it wasn't what it used to be.
Wait. Is it me, or did that sound like a grumpy dude complaining about how much better things were way back when? Um, yeah, it does.  So, er, strike all that negative "back in my day" commentary!

Back to the good stuff...  The show turned out to be a great opportunity to meet with brands that have incredible stories, reconnect with people we hadn't seen in a while and generally have a blast. In many ways, the new environment and the adventures at NorthStar made for an exciting trip that all told was well worth it! We hope the show's organizers consider it a success as we'd enjoy coming back next year.

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