My flight landed early in New York City. I caught a shuttle to New Jersey, two hours away to a resort called Crystal Springs, where a women-specific event launched with a dozen brands and around 50 attendees.
“We got the idea for the event after a meeting at Interbike,” said Pat Hus, a VP with Interbike. “We know that women represent a powerful force in the industry.”
The women’s outdoor industry has been steadily growing over the past few years. Many brands are catching up with women’s-specific gear.
All these products were made for women. They are not simply men’s gear shrunken down. Each brand has women on staff, including product designers, as well as female athletes they sponsor.
I loved the fit and function (and look) of the new Giro Road line, which includes tops, pants, jackets, and other pieces. I wore the pants on the plane, and they are versatile enough that I simply could hop on a bike at the event and not change.
Packaging and overall product aesthetics are made with women in mind. This does not mean pink and pastels dominate. In fact, Novara impressed me with its stealth, matte gray/black color schemes on a new line of bikes.
There were break-out sessions and clinics. At lunch the topic was on trends on women in biking. People For Bikes and the Outdoor Industry Women’s Coalition gave presentations.
According to Hus, the event will grow and diversify for next year. We look forward to the 2015 Women’s Story as well as watching the women’s outdoor industry continue to grow.
—Amy Oberbroeckling is an assistant editor at GearJunkie.com