We had 2 1/2 days after SIA to unpack and re-pack for ISPO, ship out the remainder of our orders, catch up with emails, change our auto-responders, and make sure none of our bags were over 50.0 lbs. It was a mad dash to the airport, but once we were sitting on the plane there was nothing left to do but sleep and get caught up on our Hollywood movies.
5 of our 6 bags ended up in Munich … the missing one of course with our 2011/2012 fleet of bindings. Doh! At least we budgeted an extra day before the show to deal with things like this so it wasn’t too much of a panic. Three train rides and three flights of stairs later (lugging 100lbs+ each) we made it to Feldkirchen where we were staying. Our warm welcome to Germany started off with a random dog peeing on Jeff’s bag, which was even funnier than it sounds when you’re sleep deprived.
ISPO was amazing. Splitboarding has really gained popularity in Europe since last time. A year ago, many of our conversations started with “it’s a snowboard that splits apart to form two skis” … followed by silence and a perplexed look from the bystander. This year people were coming up to us “hey, that’s a splitboard! I’ve never seen one in person…and you’re the Spark binding guys!” We did much less demonstrating how a splitboard works and much more technical discussions on how our bindings and accessories improve the experience. With the word “splitboard” becoming everyday vocabulary, we saw many new board manufacturers catching on having at least one split in their line. What a difference a year makes …
Of course one of the best parts about our annual tradeshow migration is meeting up with industry friends and having some fun:
After the show we stuffed our 3 board bags, 3 roller bags, and 3 of us into a rental car and drove across Switzerland with plans to spend a few days riding in Chamonix…(photos and story coming next!)