Ispo 2015 München – Trends and happenings

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The ISPO is the biggest sports trade fair in the world, held once every year in Munich.  It took me just 10 mins with a back door short cut that led me straight into the heart of the fair grounds. No traffic jam or long queues. Yeah, after a few times, I was finally a pro. Hopping out, I quickly joined the crowd of people streaming into the halls and dispersed with them in all directions.

Camping and helmets

I was prepared this time. I said goodbye to the grotesque Ispo App that I installed (and uninstalled)  and wrote all the things I wanted to see on a piece of paper. Old school. But it worked, and kept my smartphone’s hungry battery drain at a much better level. I worked my way through the halls and reached the first booth of the day. Primaloft. They launched an awesome campaign that swapped an old winter coat for a new one. These coats will be donated to support the homeless and roofless in winter “Obdachlosenhilfe des Münchner Klosters St. Bonifaz” A good cause needs to be supported. Except that only retailers were eligible to participate to get a new coat. Aaargh! This left me coming out empty-handed, but I was nevertheless contented to know that I did a good deed to the start of the day and my jacket would keep someone in need warm.

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Colourful pots and pans caught my eye as I passed by the booth of Sea to summit, an australian company on the other continent. The woman instinct in me sprang right out of no where and took me straight there. Not only were  the colours a great eye catcher to the usual aluminium pots and pans, but they were foldable, light and durable enough to stand under a gas stove. Great for outdoor kitchens that needs little space. For a moment, memories of me as a little girl and my girlfriends flashed by as we played with our toy kitchen utensils. Must have! (again) I want!

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Rockwell: I saw these guys last year in the new comers, when they were displaying the prototype of their egg-shell looking helmets built to the Vaco12 technology. Bean bags on your head. This year, these helmets were ready for the shelves. Cyclists and skiers can soon expect to find them at the local retailers. Climbers will still have to wait a while. CE certified and everything. And no, the model on the left doesn’t come delivered and packaged in the box, but the right one does.

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Wanderlust and hikes

Osprey’s new travel collection and Climbing packs are now lighter. When you walk in their booth, you’d want to immediately grab one of their Ozone and Shuttle bags and run off to the airport. And while you are running away, you might be interested to know that the Mutant 38  Climbing Back pack stayed as the ISPO award winner 14/15, and is still voted to be the athletes choice at the Osprey’s website.

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© Osprey

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If you’ve been wondering how to know if the pack really fits, there’s help. Recently, the Osprey PackSizer™ App was released. It is the world’s first digital pack fitting tool. It measures your torso visually to find the right fit for your next pack. All it needs is a picture and a few clicks.  The App is available for download for Smartphones in both versions here: IOS and Android.

This Ultralight Stuffpack blew me off. It weighs 60 g and you can stuff it all into a small pack about the size of a mens wallet. It’s waterproof, has comfortable mesh harness and it’s made of 40D Double Ripstop Sil Nylon.

 

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© Osprey

Snow shoes from Tubbs Flex VRT (vertical) presents new models with their new Dynamic Fit TM locking system called BOA. You lock your snow/Mountain boots in with just one twist.  It comes in the right colours to win every ladies heart. Even the Mountaineer model (right) for deep pow looks promising and much slimmer than ones I used in my last snow shoe trip to Allgäu.

© Kochalpin.at

Flex VRT © Kochalpin.at

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Mountaineer

 

Alpine, technical gadgets and climbing

The North Face combined this year their Thermoball jackets into Hybrid jackets that insulates and perform while you sweat. What took my complete attention was their new ABS Modulator which can be strapped together with any back pack of yours, big or small, used in an avalanche situation. This meant less restriction in using a usual ABS back pack that might not be right for your size, weight, length. This product gives you freedom in using your very own favourite back pack. The 2 small packs are strapped on the left and right of the back pack and inflating the system is triggered with a  tug from the front. This ABS System is one of the award winners of 15/16 as well.

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DSC08790_049 Oh, and a whole set of new winter trail running shoes now with Vibram soles will want to transform you immediately into a trail runner in the winter.

 

For the ultra-light climber and the quick onsight, 9.2 mm ropes are now sighted at most of the booths. Here, one from Edelweiss.

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Petzl revamped all their headlamps to perform at least 30% better than they used to. More lumen. More light. In the climbing segment, the new Petzl Sitta harness is so far the lightest of it’s kind. There’s even an little divider on the QD-rack for you to organize the different quickdraws on your belt. The buckle is now more coated to give a smoother experience, when you tug it close, or while opening. Looks pretty much like the hirundos, but is way lighter.

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The Connect Adjust is new in 2015. The adjustable arm can be set to the ideal length for rappelling maneuvers on multi-pitch routes, for mountaineering, or when moving along a fixed line in canyoning. It’s tiny and works best together with a screw carabiner. More safety and comfort for the climber. Ispo Award winner 2015

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Petzl has also a new “RAD (Rescue And Descend) system” for those of you dwelling around glaciers. The 3.9kg pack weighs a little over 1kg and holds the equipment necessary for crevasse rescue, rappelling, or roping up on skis to traverse a crevasse zone. Another Ispo Award winner 2015

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It was love at first sight. Garmin’s newest collection, the Fenix 3 GPS Sportwatch has been released recently. Newly integrated  EXO-Antenne on the ring, coloured display, WiFi, Live tracking, Bluetooth, Barometer, GPS, and so on .. A digital must have to carry on your wrist for all the trail runs or back/cross-country trips.

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Jack Wolfskin’s hydrophobic down is impregnated against water. This jacket does it so well, it floats. This Texapore downshell tec jacket is  100% waterproof with its 800 cuin  down filling. So if you want to go swimming, don’t forget your down jacket. (and no, you definately won’t float!)

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Another Award winner this year: Odlo’s sexy underwear not only for the ladies. The new Evolution Blackcomb Warm is seamless, body hugging and when you bend, it won’t slip off your precious behind. Loved the colours and cutting. Looks almost too pretty to wear this inside.

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The future of climbing guide books lays in your smartphone. DIGITAL. Who would want to always carry an extra kilo when you have it all in your smartphone? Enziano offers the basis thats ready to be filled with everything you would want to know about a route, access and areas. You take only what you need, when you need it. With bigger smartphone displays in the market, it’s not a matter anymore to discuss about the tiny topos at the crags.

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Vertical Life, originating from Brixen, south Tyrol in Italy, has been drawing a lot of attention with their ZLAG! Board contests and won the Ispo Award this year too. Their Training boards comes now in different variations and holds.  At the same time, a whole new range of guide books appears on the shelf and is slowly covering plenty of awesome areas in europe. You buy the book, you get access to the app too and all its future updates. We have been taking a closer look at their services and visiting areas near their home base. Come by again soon to find out how it worked.

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And then there was the opportunity to work yourself out on a trampoline if you haven’t had enough. Looking at him made me really tired. Hats off to the show master who can talk and jump all day just to draw some attention. Are you looking for a job?

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Summary of this years Ispo

Nothing which would really knock you out. Fashion garments are heading back to retro and urban styles, the colours goes a tone down and heads towards earthen colours, which is actually much friendlier to my taste. There’s a lot of talk about animal awareness in tracing and gaining the raw materials, and there’s going to be plenty of garments with a hybrid insulation in Autumn/Winter 15/16. Expect to see a soft shell with down, or primaloft, and other kinds of insulation .

 

My highlights of the day was catching up with familiar faces like Ines Papert and  Markus Bock, having good conversations with all the brand marketers and extending the network with diverse Outdoor Bloggers.  It is always an experience to meet faces behind the blogs and find out what makes them tick. At the end of the day, when the business cards are all gone, creativity knows no borders

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Chilling out at the Marmot Booth, this year was entertained by the Band Two of us. (looked a little more like a threesome here) . Yeah, so there goes another ISPO this year.

German Band - Twoofus

 

No outdoor trade fair would be complete without the visit of outdoor bloggers all with similiar passion in mind. Here are some of their impressions (in german):

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