Sunday, September 14, 2014

A Cuter Commuter Time at Interbike 2014

Interbike in Vegas was a lot of fun! There was so much to see and so much to do! Even though I was there all last week, there was not enough time to cover everything. Prior to this year, I had no interest in attending. Not even when we lived in Vegas. Aside from going to watch the criterium or cross-bike races, John had always gone alone to make connections with the 750+ companies there to represent over 1,200 brands in the cycling industry.

9 hour wait at the airport in Reno
This year we flew to Vegas. I landed on Sunday. John arrived later in the week since he had just gotten home from a 15+ hour round trip drive from Ogden, UT. He had been there the week prior to compete in the USA Cycling Masters Road National Championships and didn't feel like turning around and driving another 7.5 hours to Vegas. I don't blame him!
Beautiful morning in Boulder City, NV
The next morning was beautiful (and unusually humid) in Boulder City. There were plenty of clouds in the sky with 50% chance of precipitation.
But that didn't stop me and my mom-in-law from driving a few miles up the street to Bootleg Canyon for the Interbike Outdoor Demo.
Interbike kicked off with two days of OutDoor Demo (on Monday and Tuesday). You can hit the trail or ride 26-miles of non-motorized paved path which makes up the River Mountains Loop Trail. I used to ride along part of that path all the way to Lake Mead from our home near the I-15 when we used to live in Vegas.
Test ride on the Yuba Boda Boda utility bicycle
Some people wondered why Interbike is held in Vegas but where you could have tents and tents of bike stuff galore and check out all of the latest and greatest?!? And demo e-bikes, road bikes, mountain bikes, cross-bikes (you name it!) in car-free facilities surrounded by beautiful desert? And then be in the mecca of entertainment where you can eat and dine at several of the best restaurants in the world? People who have never lived in Vegas don't realize there's a lot Vegas has to offer on the Strip and off the Strip. And yes, there are great places to ride also. Mt. Charleston, Red Rock, Lake Mead all the way to Valley of Fire to name a few places! Of course you wouldn't ride on the Strip near Mandalay Bay. The Strip is where you party, which is what 90% of the attendees who were predominantly male probably did.

The weather is typically ideal this time of the year. But this year there were storms earlier in the week. It was threatening on Monday at Interbike Outdoor Demo. A few drops started coming down so my mom-in-law decided to head into downtown Boulder City for lunch.
Sipping margaritas with hot wings and salad
Then we laid by the pool with freshly made mojitos until the rain came.

 There were still clouds in the sky by Tuesday morning. I could have ridden the Yuba Boda Boda from Mandalay Bay back to Bootleg Canyon as part of the Ride 2 Recovery event but since I was staying in Boulder City, it was too early and too much to ask my in-laws (who were very willing) to drive me into town.
We drove to the airport to pick up John. I've always liked the Vegas skyline. But when we lived in Vegas, I was usually I'm suffering to pedal up the hill to the left of the freeway to notice. Now I think nothing of the hill. Boy what I would do to fly up it on my commuter to see how fast I am now!
 Anyway, we had lunch with John's parents on the patio of Jack's Cafe in Boulder City.
 It looks like someone was touring on their bike. I was glad to see a bike rack that wasn't there before.
 Then John and I went to Dirt Demo (again) on Tuesday.
I took a Liv Giant cross-bike for a test ride. It was definitely fun to go off-road and onto the trails I had ridden by so many times while on my road bike!!
Later that evening we met up with friends for dinner at Lucille's BBQ at the Green Valley District.
For the next couple of days John and I was at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center visiting exhibitors indoors. The venue was SO LARGE that the aisles had street names and there were way-finding signs to direct retail buyers.
One of my favorite booths is coming out with a super stylish clothing line for bicycle commuters!! I tried on a few pieces and somehow ended up in the group shot. Not only did they have well-made apparel like reversible jackets and zip-up a-line skirts, but they had super cute rompers!! EVERYTHING I would wear to ride my bike to work!
 As you can imagine, there were many, many bikes on display.
I met the uber-cool owner of Lazer Helmets and was thrilled to talk about the new technology integrated into their helmet systems. A time trial helmet that lets you know when your head is not in an aero position! A combination helmet lock for your straps (I think it was called the 'cafe lock') so you can use your helmet as a lock. It currently works with only the Lazer buckle system but it's possible they'll expand.
Trying on the urban line of helmets
Some of the exhibitor booths were amazing!! It looked like something out of a Better Block design. Others brought in real sod to put underneath a camper VW Bug.
Clif Bar booth provided a place for people to sit and collaborate
Met Ben King. He autographed a poster for me. Several times Iron Man Champion Chris Lieto was also there.
Clever water feature!
One of the nights we went to Cross Vegas. Because we drive a Subaru, we feasted on tacos and free beer at the Subara VIP tent while watching the race.

 Forgot my cowbells!! Argh! Next time.
The second day at Interbike, our backs and legs we were pretty tired from walking around so we took a break poolside on a daybed at Palms Place. It is nice that we still have friends in the industry.
Then I royally screwed up John's flight plan home so he ended up staying in Vegas for a couple more days until Sunday. At least it gave him a chance to spend more quality time with his parents.

Meanwhile I hung out at home with our kitties!! Boy did I miss them!
Hush and be still Kitty-son!!
 These two sisters. They just LOVE each other!!
 Havi, the calico usually wins any kind of scuffle that Elgy, the black and white cat instigated.
Help - I've fallen and I can't get up!
And I SO MISSED riding my bike!! Even though I had the car and a scooter sitting in the garage, I still rode my bike to the post office and then later that day to the grocery store and to pick up dinner.
I am looking forward to riding my bike to work again. And wearing cute skirts because that's half the fun!!

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