Interbike 2013: Specialized SWAT under-bibs

October 7, 2013

Jessica Stein hunts down some smugglers’ undies.

Is that a bottle under your shirt?
Is that a bottle under your shirt?

Much as it sometimes seems that SRAM is waging a war against front shifting (Hammerschmidt, doubles, XX1…), it now seems like Specialized is out to do away with the hydration pack.  And who can blame them?  For an hour or two, 3L of water water as well as everything from the last backcountry epic are probably overkill.  With their new SWAT-compatible frames and accessories, Specialized have been secreting tools and spares away on their ’14 bikes: chain tools in the steerer, multi tools in shock mounts, and tubes in bottle cages.  But what about everything else?

Hangs over baggies' waistband
Hangs over baggies’ waistband

Meant to be worn under baggies, these Mountain Bib Liner Shorts caught our eye by providing an impressive amount of on-body storage.  The three jersey-style pockets are only attached for about half their height, allowing their contents to sit over baggy shorts’ waist bands.  More storage is also available at the wearer’s thigh- a great place to keep snacks edible on cool days.

Even if they’re not for everyone, in a year when most products were incremental improvements over last year’s model, the willingness of a large company to take someone’s hey- I don’t like wearing a pack thought to its logical conclusion is more than welcome.  And the US$88 suggested retail pricing isn’t half bad, either.

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