9/17 and 9/18/13
Interbike is the bike industry trade show held each year in Las Vegas. This show is huge and is attended by over 20,000 people. The show is only open to industry folks. I was able to get in with my CORBA affiliation.
On Tuesday morning I joined Otto, Steve and Miguel and we headed out to Bootleg Canyon for the outdoor demo. Here you can test ride almost any bike you can dream of. I have been thinking about a hard tail (no rear suspension) with 29″ wheels for a couple of years. I think it will be great for bike touring, hauling a tool trailer for work and well uh beating my buddies up the hill too! I had my eye on the Niner Air 9 but every time I went to the Niner booth the bike was out. They only had one in my size and it was in demand so I never did get to try it. I had demoed a similar Niner aluminum frame a while back but the Air 9 is a carbon frame so I really wanted to try it. Niner may have lost a sale due to the lack of availability.
I tested the Niner Jet 9, Pivot LES, Pivot Mach 429 and the Santa Cruz Tall Boy. The Pivot LES was the only Hardtail bike I tested and it felt really good. I wished I had more time to demo more bikes but the demo days were on Monday and Tuesday and I could not make it on Monday.
Bootleg is a great place to demo bikes. They have a shuttle available to take you to the top of the mountain. You can then ride down on several different trails. The trail Steve took me on was much less traveled than the others and had a bit of everything on it. It did get very windy towards the end of the day and that made it a challenge. Some of the vendors started packing up early due to the high winds. While I was riding down one trail a rider crashed not far in front of me. I think the wind may have thrown him off his line? He was knocked out and moaning in pain. Another rider called 911 and shortly after another rider showed up that was an Emergency Room Doctor (how lucky eh) so I took off to go to the first aid tent which was not far away to get help. I continued my ride and heard the ambulance coming shortly after. I hope he is okay.
Wednesday we walked around the indoor show. Hundreds of booths with bikes, components, gear… It was great to see all the latest stuff but it was a lot to take in.
Wednesday evening was the big deal. The Concerned Off Road Bicyclists Association (CORBA) would be inducted into the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame along cycling legend Marla Streb and a few others. I was on the CORBA Board of Directors and the Volunteer Trail Crew Leader for seven years as well as organizing the CORBA Fat Tire Fest for three years so I was very happy to see this!