- Buyer's Guide
Best of ISPO MUNICH part 1
Sixteen halls full of gear. Ski/snowboard gear. Gym gear. Outdoor gear. Skate gear. Swimming gear. Wearables/sports-related electronics. Bike gear. Fabrics. Buckles. Lots and lots of carry. This is ISPO MUNICH, Europe’s biggest trade show for the sports business and we dove right into it for two glorious days.
Overall the big brands are mainly renewing their collections, adding different colours and small this and thats. Almost everybody tries to jump on the heritage train in one way or another: colours, materials, vintage logos. But there are still a lot of interesting young companies coming up with fresh stuff.
Here’s part 1 of our “best of ISPO” and, yes, that means there will be a part 2. For outdoor brands, there are a lot of similarities with Outdoor Retailer, which we covered a few weeks ago, but ISPO offers a more European view on the sports scene. This part will focus on what caught our eye in sports-related carry.
Covering mainly mountain biking and skiing/snowboarding, Amplifi boasts a really nice collection of packs, along with protective clothing. We liked them for their quality of materials and general looks.
UK-based Apidura makes super nice bike bags for off-road adventures. As with a lot of great ideas, the founders used it for their own adventures first, like a recent tour from Istanbul to Paris. Waterproof, lightweight and attachable to places you never thought you could store stuff.
Also jumping on the bike bag scene, Additive takes a different approach and focuses more on protection and less on lightweight. Also, their bags will sort of curl around your bike frame.
Duffels with backpack straps often have in common that the back panel doesn’t offer any rigidity, making it only usable for short distances. Plus the straps are mostly not suitable for the weight inside the bag. DMM managed to solve at least one of these problems. The straps actually go on the top of the bag instead of the bottom; the top flap is made of padded foam, supporting your back and making it easier to open it and access stuff inside the bag.
They’ve been around for only three years, but are doing really well. Douchebags introduced a couple of new bags, including the 15l Base and the 60l Little Bastard. The Base was developed with famous BASE jumper Jokke Sommer (hence the name). What we really liked is that they’ve been able to keep a signature design in all of the items in their collection.
They made a fabulous entry in bags, they were extensively covered in our Outdoor Retailer post, but their waterproof panniers are worth mentioning. Ortlieb and Vaude ruled in Europe for these, but Thule is taking them head on. Speaking of carry, they bought Chariot (mainly bike trailers for kids) last year and it fits perfectly into their spectrum.
A small step for man, a giant leap for mankind: Klättermusen added a new colour to their range of backpacks. Pictured is the 22l Mimer backpack. The fabric they’re using still remains top-notch. Much more important though: they hired a new backpack designer and I was promised we can expect some new stuff pretty soon. After adding “You will hardly recognize us anymore,” we’re excited to see what’s coming!
Waterproof gear. And they make it for Special Forces as well.
We met up with the guys from Vertepac again and, though having a modest space, for backpacks they were easily the most innovative of the whole show.